Senior Policy Advisor

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Tēnei tūranga – About the role

The Senior Policy Advisor is a team member position in MBIE. As part of the Policy team, the Senior Policy Advisor is responsible for supporting the overall capability of the team.

The Senior Policy Advisor:

  • Undertakes complex policy analysis, leads development of innovative, practical and durable policy options (including through engagement with stakeholders), and provides authoritative policy advice often in areas that are complex and sensitive.
  • Takes the lead and project manages complex policy work and project teams.
  • Enhances the overall capability of the team through coaching and mentoring team members during their day-to-day work and against their longer-term development plans.

Ngā herenga – Requirements of the role

Personal specifications

  • A good tertiary qualification.
  • Must have the legal right to live and work in New Zealand.

Policy knowledge and skills

  • Understands the current government context, policy agenda and priorities and demonstrates flexibility, adaptability and strategic agility as the needs and priorities of the Minister and the Ministry change.
  • Is able to use strategic thinking to identify what is important for the policy area in the medium and long term and system thinking to see policy issues in the wider context.
  • Understands and is able to select, adapt and use a range of up-to-date frameworks, principles, tools and methods and can draw on experience in different policy domains to apply them appropriately to given policy issues.
  • Is able to use advanced critical thinking, reasoning and judgement to identify policy issues; shape an ambiguous, complex or unclear policy issue into a tractable policy problem; identify its root causes; explore and evaluate relevant information and integrate it into the development of policy options.
  • Is able to build requisite knowledge for different policy issues quickly, draw on in-depth knowledge of the policy area as well as broad knowledge from other policy domains, and critically use evidence and information from multiple and diverse sources to draw inferences and come to conclusions based on available evidence.
  • Is able to apply an outward-looking approach to building relationships with external stakeholders, delivery agencies and government agencies, understands their different perspectives, and is able to manage differences of views and reflect them in advice.
  • Is able to use judgement to identify and assess policy options against the desired outcomes, identify their cost-effectiveness and impact, identify risk and effective mitigation strategies, deal comfortably with uncertainty and make innovative, practical and durable recommendations without the total picture.
  • Is able to use policy project management processes to lead and manage projects effectively
  • Is able to navigate effectively and flexibly through standard policy advisory processes and Cabinet requirements.
  • Is able to use a range of oral, written and visual mediums to communicate effectively in diverse situations.

Takohanga tuhinga o mua – Key accountabilities and deliverables

Policy activities and tasks

  • Leads, scopes, shapes, plans and manages policy projects in risky, complex, ambiguous or sensitive areas.
  • Contributes to developing a strategic view of the policy agenda in the medium and long term and analyses policy issues in a strategic and system context.
  • Applies advanced frameworks and methods of analysis to identify policy problems, analyse the issues, and identify and assess the policy options.
  • Applies advanced system, strategic and critical thinking, clear and logical reasoning and sound judgement to analyse policy issues.
  • Critically synthesises information from a wide variety of domains and uses in-depth knowledge of the policy area to draw sound conclusions based on the judicious use of the available evidence.
  • Has established some areas of subject matter or domain depth.
  • Leads engagement with delivery agencies, stakeholders and government agencies to ensure the advice provided is practical and effective.
  • Develops innovative, practical, effective and durable policy options that will help to achieve the desired outcomes.
  • Provides clear, accurate and well-reasoned policy products that anticipate and meet the needs of the Minister and communicate complex issues and concepts clearly and succinctly.

Work management

  • Use project planning and management techniques to effectively to carry out the agreed policy work, using initiative to resolve most conflicts, manage risks and coordinate work with others.
  • Works with some guidance on the overall policy objectives, within the resources available and provides timely reports on progress.
  • Leads multiple pieces of work concurrently and actively and independently plans and manages work load.
  • Takes a leadership role in cross-MBIE and cross-government policy projects.
  • Chairs and contributes to meetings, including where matters are complex or sensitive, require negotiation or solutions.

People Leadership

  • Leads project teams and understands and utilises the capability of team members to deliver high quality project outputs.
  • Provides intellectual leadership by bringing new ideas and knowledge to policy discussions and leads strategic conversations in the policy area.
  • Provide supervision, guidance, coaching and mentoring and on-the-job training to team members.
  • Contributes to the performance of the team through providing peer review and quality control including projects and tasks that the Senior Policy Advisor is not leading

Capability development

  • Takes responsibility for own professional development, working with manager, to seek opportunities to learn.

Relationship Management

  • Maintains relationships across a variety of functions and locations.
  • Draws upon multiple relationships to exchange ideas, resources, and know how.
  • Actively seeks to build and maintain a network of contacts.

Wellbeing, health & safety

  • Displays commitment through actively supporting all safety and wellbeing initiatives
  • Ensures own and others safety at all times
  • Complies with relevant safety and wellbeing policies, procedures, safe systems of work and event reporting
  • Reports all incidents/accidents, including near misses in a timely fashion
  • Is involved in health and safety through participation and consultation

Tō tūranga i roto i te Manatū – Your place in the Ministry

More information about MBIE's structure

To mātou aronga – What we do for Aotearoa New Zealand

Hīkina Whakatutuki is the te reo Māori name for the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment. Hīkina means to uplift. Whakatutuki means to move forward, to make successful. Our name speaks to our purpose, Grow Aotearoa New Zealand for All.

To Grow Aotearoa New Zealand for All, we put people at the heart of our mahi. Based on the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi / The Treaty of Waitangi, we are committed to upholding authentic partnerships with Māori.

As agile public service leaders, we use our breadth and experience to navigate the ever-changing world. We are service providers, policy makers, investors and regulators. We engage with diverse communities, businesses and regions. Our work touches on the daily lives of New Zealanders. We grow opportunities (Puāwai), guard and protect (Kaihāpai) and innovate and navigate towards a better future (Auaha).

Ngā matatau – Our competencies

Cultivates innovation We create new and better ways for the organisation to be successful by challenging the status quo generating new and creative ideas and translating them into workable solutions.

Nimble learning We are curious and actively learn through experimentation when tackling new problems by learning as we go when facing new situations and challenges.

Customer focus We build strong customer relationships and deliver customer-centric solutions by listening and gaining insights into the needs of the communities we serve and actively seeking and responding to feedback.

Decision quality We make quality and timely decisions that shape the future for our communities and keep the organisation moving forward by relying on an appropriate mix of analysis, wisdom, experience, and judgement to make valid and reliable decisions.

Action oriented We step up, taking on new opportunities and tough challenges with purpose, urgency and discipline by taking responsibility, ownership and action on challenges, and being accountable for the results.

Collaborates We connect, working together to build partnerships with our communities, working collaboratively to meet shared objectives by gaining trust and support of others; actively seeking the views, experiences, and opinions of others and by working co-operatively with others across MBIE, the public sector and external stakeholder groups.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi

As an agency of the public service, MBIE has a responsibility to contribute to the Crown meeting its obligations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi (Te Tiriti). Meeting our commitment to Te Tiriti will contribute towards us realising the overall aims of Te Ara Amiorangi – Our Path, Our Direction, and achieve the outcome of Growing New Zealand for All. The principles of Te Tiriti - including partnership, good faith, and active protection – are at the core of our work. MBIE is committed to delivering on our obligations as a Treaty partner with authenticity and integrity and to enable Māori interests. We are committed to ensuring that MBIE is well placed to meet our obligations under the Public Service Act 2020 (Te Ao Tūmatanui) to support the Crown in strengthening the Māori/Crown Relationship under the Treaty and to build MBIE’s capability, capacity and cultural intelligence to deliver this.

Mahi i roto i te Ratonga Tūmatanui – Working in the public service

Ka mahitahi mātou o te ratonga tūmatanui kia hei painga mō ngā tāngata o Aotearoa i āianei, ā, hei ngā rā ki tua hoki. He kawenga tino whaitake tā mātou hei tautoko i te Karauna i runga i āna hononga ki a ngāi Māori i raro i te Tiriti o Waitangi. Ka tautoko mātou i te kāwanatanga manapori. Ka whakakotahingia mātou e te wairua whakarato ki ō mātou hapori, ā, e arahina ana mātou e ngā mātāpono me ngā tikanga matua o te ratonga tūmatanui i roto i ā mātou mahi.

In the public service we work collectively to make a meaningful difference for New Zealanders now and in the future. We have an important role in supporting the Crown in its relationships with Māori under the Treaty of Waitangi. We support democratic government. We are unified by a spirit of service to our communities and guided by the core principles and values of the public service in our work.

What does it mean to work in Aotearoa New Zealand’s Public Service?(external link) — Te Kawa Mataaho The Public Service Commission

MBIE value: Māia - Bold & brave, Pae Kahurangi - Build our future, Mahi Tahi - Better together, Pono Me Te Tika - Own it