Ref: 1624955

Original Listing

Company: 1624955

Salary: 40,613 - 44,241

Closing Date: Closing date: 3 Apr 2019

Location: Bristol, South West, is the preferred location. Other FC office locations may be considered.

IT Technical Lead

Background Information

Forestry Commission England’s Forest Services (FS) are the Government’s forestry experts responsible for enabling land owners and managers, businesses, civil society organisations, and local communities (the "forestry sector") to protect, improve and expand England's woodlands. It achieves this through regulation, incentives and advice.

The Strategic Development team is responsible for driving change and continual business improvement across FS, providing analytical, business performance management, business planning, development and communications capacity.

The IT Technical Lead sits within the Strategic Development Team and reports to the Strategic Development Team Manager.

Purpose of the job

FS is currently undergoing IT service transition. Our new IT services are being provided from another part of the Forestry Commission (Forest Enterprise England - FEE) and from a small number of external suppliers.

The IT Technical Lead is an important new role within FS. You will be responsible for the overall technical architecture for FS and for being the intelligent (technical) customer for our new IT services as we move into ‘business as usual’. You will provide the technical leadership for our IT transformation programme, working closely with the Change Programme Manager (who leads on project management) and with technical colleagues in FEE and external suppliers. You will also work closely with FS Development Manager, who is responsible for developing and delivering improvements to business systems and processes, providing them with technical advice and guidance. You will ensure that FS achieves maximum business benefits from its new IT service provision. You will also ensure that strong technical links are maintained with other parts of the Defra group, particularly the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) and Natural England (NE).

Key Work Areas

1) Own and maintain the overall technical strategy and architecture for FS (the “Enterprise Architecture”) ensuring that FS architecture is secure, robust and resilient.
a. Ensure that any new system developments led by the Development Team or our IT suppliers fit within the Enterprise Architecture.
b. Understand and define the scope of different suppliers of IT services to FS and the technical interfaces between them, ensuring that these services and interfaces continue to work well together.
c. Identify technical solutions to meet ongoing or new business requirements, ensuring they are well defined.

2) Provide technical leadership for FS’s IT transformation programme, working closely with the Change Programme Manager, Development Manager and others, and ensuring that technical requirements are understood, conveyed and met.
a. Ensure that new application and infrastructure improvements are sustainable, offer long term value for money and reflect the overall technical strategy of the business.
b. Work with external suppliers, the RPA, FS EU Exit team and other relevant FS managers to ensure that all FS IT systems are ready for day 1 of EU Exit.
c. For new or changed business requirements/problems proactively research possible IT solutions, advise the business on the possible approaches and design the high-level technical solution including how this will be split between multiple suppliers (if needed). Assess solutions from the different IT suppliers to ensure they meet the agreed technical requirements and fit together within the overall Enterprise Architecture.

3) Represent FS on various Defra or RPA-led Data and Legacy governance groups and industry Architecture Boards, ensuring continuing interfaces and data feeds between FS and RPA/other relevant systems.

4) Provide technical expertise and direction for the day-to-day delivery of FS IT services:
a. Be the intelligent (technical) client with FEE and other suppliers.
b. Manage processes established for assessing and agreeing proposed changes/fixes to FS IT applications.
c. Support technical problem resolution and work with the relevant suppliers/ managers to identify and implement solutions to them.
d. Support the delivery of IT development projects including input of technical advice and guidance to business cases and feasibility studies, outline solution reviews, progress reviews, risk workshops, testing and acceptance events as required.
e. Provide technical specification/ requirements for the procurement of new IT services and/or re-tendering of existing IT services.
f. Identify key government IT initiatives and industry trends that will impact FS, and ensure that they are reflected within relevant strategies and plans.
g. Manage the work of external contractors as required.

5) Keep abreast of IT service provision within the broader Defra group, with a view to potential longer-term transition to this service.


Making Effective Decisions
• Analyse and use a range of relevant, credible information from internal and external sources to support decisions.
• Present strong recommendations in a timely manner outlining the consideration of other options, costs, benefits and risks.

Seeing the Big Picture
• Understand the strategic drivers for your area of work.
• Remain alert to issues and trends which might impact your work area.

Working Together
• Establish professional relationships with a range of stakeholders.
• Collaborate with these to share information, resources and support.

Delivering at Pace
• Act promptly to reassess workloads and priorities when there are conflicting demands to maintain performance.