Adviceline Freephone 0808 278 7808
Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Generalist Adviser

Salary £21,695 – £22,571 (based on experience and qualifications) 

F/T (37 hours a week) 

Generalist Adviser to advise across all channels (Phone, Webchat, Email & face to face). 

Key aspects of role:  

  • Local client’s across all areas of generalist advice, including Debt, Housing & Benefits. 
  • Deliver fantastic customer service and able to build a rapport, via various channels, with the primary method being the telephone.  
  • Is able to work at pace, whilst still maintaining quality 
  • Recording detailed case notes 
  • Able to help clients move forward with their issues 
  • Able to work as part of the office team and play your part in helping as many people in the community as we can, linking up with different projects we run.  

You must have an understanding of, and commitment to Citizens Advice aims , principles and equal opportunities. 

Benefits: 

  • Employer contribution to pension 7% 
  • Holiday: 24 days pa (pro rata) plus Bank Holidays and 1 additional day per 12 months. Up to 4 days Christmas closure. 
  • Death in service insurance (inc Employee Assistance Programme) 
  • Flexible and hybrid working negotiable 
  • Learning and development opportunities 

Closing date: Monday 18th July 2022, 5pm 

Charity 1056102. Company 3191085. Financial Conduct Authority FRN: 617537 

Job Description 

Employer: Cambridge & District Citizens Advice
Responsible to: Help Through Hardship Lead & Ops Manager
Based at: 66 Devonshire Road, Cambridge. CB1 2BL + Home working 

Cambridge Citizens Advice is delivering advice to the local community via their Adviceline, Webchat, Video Call & some face to face.  

The adviser carries out an exploration to find out about the client’s circumstances, provide advice to client and agree achievable next steps. This could include carrying out a benefit check, help the clients with ideas to increase their income, assess and assist with any emergencies, look to see they are getting the required help to deal with their debts and assess for a foodbank/ fuel voucher.  

Main Responsibilities 

  • Providing Advice to assist Foodbank Helpline callers 
  • Planning and Development 
  • Service Delivery 
  • Administration 
  • Training, Development and Recruitment 
  • Research and Campaigns 
  • Other duties and responsibilities 

Advising clients using the most appropriate channel  

This likely to involve (but is not limited to): 

  • With their exemplary customer service and people skills the adviser is able to quickly establish a great rapport with the client and is able to actively listen to the client. 
  • Carrying out a full exploration of the clients background, current situation & establish what their goal is by contacting us and giving the client the appropriate advice & agree achievable next steps to move the client forward 
  • Advising clients whether their income and personal circumstances indicate that they may be entitled to any grants 
  • Advising the client of ways they could increase their income & steps on how to achieve this, where appropriate.  
  • Offering and calculating a benefit check to ensure the client is receiving all of the benefits they are entitled to, where appropriate. 
  • Checking whether they are in immediate need with help for food, gas, electricity or accommodation or other emergency situations and take appropriate action 
  • Checking whether client is in debt and is getting the appropriate help and support in dealing with these issues 
  • Ensure advice conforms to the Bureau’s Quality Standards and procedure, with every client.  

Planning and development 

  • Advise Management on service delivery issues and problems 
  • Contribute to activities, procedures and systems so as to promote common practices within the advice team 
  • Utilise IT systems and other resources 
  • Participate in bureau initiatives as appropriate and contribute to the work of associated committees, working parties and projects 

Service Delivery 

  • Provide advice and Information to clients by telephone, email, webchat, video call & face to face- working from the office and/or from home as specified in your contract 
  • To deal with client referrals from our trusted partners who are local agencies 
  • Have the ability to multi-task and be agile, adapting to the channel that has the most demand.  
  • Ensure that systems are developed and maintained for case recording, statistics, follow-up work and quality control, in partnership with other members of the team. 
  • To be a team player and attend meetings as necessary 
  • To meet the targets set out by the Operations Manager 
  • The adviceline operates between 9am and 5pm so you need to ensure coverage for the service between these times. 

Administration 

  • To ensure effective and efficient administrative systems are maintained 
  • Abide by the health and safety policy with regard to staff, equipment and premises with statutory requirements 
  • To record an account of the client’s circumstances and the advice and information given to them on Casebook together with their name and personal details if they are prepared to provide this information. 
  • To work in accordance with the requirements of Data Protection 
  • Collect and report such statistical information with regard to client contacts, advice given and workload as required 

Training, development and recruitment 

  • Keep up to date with legislation, case law, policies and procedures relating to relevant subject areas and undertake appropriate training 
  • Read relevant publications provided by the Bureau 
  • Attend relevant internal and external meetings as agreed with the line manager 
  • Prepare for and attend supervision sessions/team meetings as appropriate internally and externally 
  • Assist with service initiatives for the improvement of services and make recommendations where improvements can be made 
  • To ensure that you make time in your own calendar, for your own development (each month) 
  • During a 12-month period, you achieve the equivalent of 16 CPD points and record these within your own learning account. 

Research and campaigns (Social Policy) 

  • Assist with social policy work by providing information about clients’ circumstances, either anonymously or with the client’s consent 
  • Provide statistical information on the number of clients and nature of cases and provide regular reports to Bureau management 
  • Monitor service provision to ensure that it reaches the widest possible client group 
  • Alert other staff to local and national issues 
  • Liaise with statutory and non-statutory organisations and represent the Service on outside bodies as appropriate 

Other duties, and responsibilities 

All staff at CCAB are required to: 

  • Have a full commitment to the aims and vision for the organisation as laid out in the business plan and take part in annual processes such as business plan reviews, production of annual and other reports, etc. 
  • Have a commitment to on-going change management in order to achieve those aims and objectives 
  • Have an understanding of and commitment to, the aims and principles of the service and its equal opportunities/diversity policies 
  • Have an active commitment to promoting Social Policy/Research and Campaigning as a key driver for effecting a positive change for our clients 
  • Have a commitment to working as a team player – supporting and respecting each other in a time of limited staff resource – having a flexible approach to covering functions that may be outside a specific job 
  • Abide by health and safety guidelines and share responsibility for your own safety and that of colleagues 
  • Undertake duties in a resource efficient way, minimising impacts to the environment wherever possible 
  • Undertake any other duties connected with the operation of the Bureau as may be required from time to time 

Person Specification 

 

Factor Essential Desirable
Experience Experience of providing Generalist advice  CAB certificate of general advice
Experience of using a benefit calculator to estimate client’s probable awards
Knowledge Understanding of the benefits system Understanding of other related benefits, debt and housing 
Skills and Competencies Ability to implement and promote equal opportunities policies and relate to clients in a non-judgmental way  Completed the generalist advice programme on Skillbook 
Numeracy skills for monitoring and analysis of statistical information for project funders and management   
Ability to prioritise and manage own workload. 
Effective oral and written communication skills with particular emphasis on ability to work with a wide cross-section of clients, reports and correspondence 
Competent at using computers and other IT equipment and resources to facilitate supervision and case checking 
Proficient typist 
Ordered approach to the prioritisation and management of work and an ability and willingness to follow and develop procedures 
Ability and willingness to work as part of a team and to maintain a positive attitude whilst under pressure 
Is resilient & able to deal with clients who are in crisis and have complex, urgent issues. 
Ability to problem solve and think on your feet 
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