The British Council is the world’s leading cultural relations organization and creates opportunities for people in the UK and worldwide to understand each other, to work together and learn from one another. We see this as crucial to building secure, more prosperous and sustainable futures for us all. We build trust and understanding between different countries and cultures and develop strong international links that are of benefit to people in Britain and the rest of the world.
Exams Officer – Fixed Term Contract
- Job Type: Contract/Full Time
- Qualification: BA/BSc/HND
- Location: Abuja, Lagos
Location: Lagos, Nigeria Application Link
Location: Abuja , Nigeria Application Link
Role Type: Business Delivery
Pay Band: PB 4 – H
Duration: Fixed Term contract (6 months)
Reports to: Assistant IELTS Administrator, Lagos / Head of IELTS Operations/Head of Schools
- To support Examination Services in Nigeria in delivering exams and tests and to maintain them at the highest professional standards as set out in the British Council’s EQCA (Examination Quality & Compliance Standards), examinations boards and partner standards.
Internal Operating Context – Regional
By 2050 the population of Sub Saharan Africa will be 2 billion people, with the majority living in an urban environment. The region will have a middle class the size of Europe. 70% of the population is under the age of 25, and this demographic will grow at 15% year on year for the next 10 years. Generally the region is becoming more politically stable. There are on average 50 elections each year, many of which are more open and transparent than before. The majority of countries in SSA are developing economies. Gender inequality remains and life for women and girls on the continent remains challenging.
While economic growth is significant, it comes from a low base. Income per capita has doubled and foreign debt levels have halved since 2000. Aspirations to become middle income countries as written in national development plans in the next 10 years are optimistic. The World Bank longer view forecasts that ‘almost all’ African countries will be middle income by 2050. Across the region government priorities focus on economic growth, education and skills, and youth employment. The opportunity and challenge for prosperity and security is the population explosion, meeting aspirations of a youthful continent. Critical to this is improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the English and Exams businesses across the region. Two major global change initiatives to increase the effectiveness of these operations will be implemented in SSA over the next 2-3 years.
Internal Operating Context – Local
- Nigeria is now officially the largest economy in Africa. It is also the most populous country with over 180 million citizens. The UK is its largest trading partner. Nigeria holds significant political power in the region and internationally and its society retains a positive attitude to the UK. Therefore, there continue to be major opportunities for the UK and British Council to build on our strong existing relationships with the Nigerian government, institutions and customers/audiences. However, there are complex and substantial risks to this work i.e. security and compliance.
- Nigeria is the British Council’s largest operation in sub-Saharan Africa with offices in 4 cities – Port Harcourt in the south, Kano in the north, Abuja the Federal capital and Lagos the commercial centre. We also have a number of project offices across the country. Our 200 staff work across a range of states delivering large scale contracts, partnership programmes, examinations, projects as well as services in Arts, Education & Society and English & Exams. We are already achieving substantial impact and income (current annual income is £27.2 million) and have plans to grow and develop our impact further. Partners and clients include government, public and private institutions, foundations, private sector organisations and civil society. We work closely with the wider UK mission including DFID and UKTI.
- 42% of Nigeria’s population is under 14. The government has recognised that its Vision 2020 must address the aspirations of this young population as part of its drive to achieve peace and prosperity. This has led to unprecedented interest and investment in Education, the Arts and good governance. This alignment with the UK’s priorities creates a growth environment for the British Council. To be successful in this, we need to build understanding with our UK stakeholders of Nigeria as an emerging economy with substantial commercial and development opportunities as well as the challenges they may be more familiar with. In this we will seek to integrate our approach with that of the wider UK mission.
- We intend to expand and scale up our existing programmes, contracts and services in the Arts, Education & Society, English & Examinations and develop offers to fill important gaps such as in Skills. We also intend to ensure that we have a good balance of partnership, customer services and client funded work across all these sectors. To do all this we need to create the right enabling environment. In addition to developing the professional and technical expertise of our staff, we need to support them to build their relationships within Nigeria, the region and the wider global network.
- This will ensure we develop as well as adopt and use best practice. We also need rigorous and compliant frameworks to support our work in areas such as finance, tax & status, security, procurement, compliance and quality management. We have new premises in Kano and have a major premises project under development in Abuja. However, there is still more work to be done, especially in Lagos and Port Harcourt to ensure our premises and technology support our brand reputation for integrity, innovation and professionalism.
- The Exams business in Nigeria has grown significantly in recent years. We doubled our income and volumes between 2011 and 2013. In 2014/15 we delivered 90,000 examinations, this financial year the target is 100,000 exams on a turnover of £8.5m. Nigeria examinations work encompasses School exams, IELTS, and a wide range of academic and professional qualifications.
- Customer service, operational quality and compliance assurance are critical to the business. Nigeria’s operating context means that risk management and contingency planning will be ongoing areas of focus. Developing flexible and appropriate delivery models will be critical in responding to the challenges of working across the country. There are a number of initiatives underway to address these needs. The Global New Operating Model for Exams (GNOME) and Global Financial Change projects are critical to our business plans.
Main Accountabilities: (including people management and finance)
- As Exams Officer, the post holder will be line managed by an Operations Manager or IELTS Administrator in Lagos.
- This role will support delivery of all examinations administered from the Lagos office.
- This role will ensure that assigned tests are delivered in a timely manner
- All administrative procedures are in full compliance with examination boards, partners and EQCA standards.
- Reliability: to ensure examinations are delivered securely according to board requirements
- Quality and Compliance: to deliver a high standard of customer service to our schools and their candidates. As measured by our own Exams Quality Standards, Customer Service Standards, and inspection visits from Cambridge International Exams, IELTS and other examination boards as required.
- Finance: all British Council standards for managing finances are met with relation to income reconciliations, cash handling, managing purchase orders, managing contracts and procurement.
- Administration of examinations (pre-test)
- Overseeing the taking delivery of examinations materials and checking them prior to exams commencing, packing and returning scripts, maintaining logs appropriately.
- Answering enquiries about exams.
- Exam registration procedures including receiving and collating registration forms, entering and retrieving data on exam board registration portals, payments and exams correspondence including dispatch of results.
- Assist with recruitment and management of venue staff (invigilators, examiners and inspectors).
- Assist with evaluation of new associate schools, agents and other educational institutions.
- Assist with searching for and evaluation new venues.
- Delivering Examinations on test days which includes:
- Supervision of venue staff
- Ensuring adherence examination day procedures
- Delivering speaking tests
- Overseeing practical examinations
- Post-Examination administration
- Secure and accurate despatch of test answers and materials to the examination board. Maintaining accurate logs of examination paper movements.
- Effective delegation of duties when absent on leave or through illness etc.
- Venue staff creation, scheduling and payment.
- Assist with monitoring and training of invigilators.
- To be part of the recruitment, training and monitoring team for venue staff.
- To act as liaison between examiners and the relevant operations managers and trainers.
- To assist in planning agent briefing events, and to support agents in the registration and preparing candidates for exams.
- To assist schools with becoming associate centres, as necessary.
- To assist Exam/Grant Funded Services (GFS) project managers in delivery of Education/Skills-specific events, including assisting with managing relationships with stakeholders.
- To assist with managing administration of exams with professional bodies partners, as necessary.
Marketing & Customer Service:
- To assist in providing data for marketing action plan and business planning.
- Seeking and using customer feedback to improve service delivery.
- To assist the Regional Sales Manager in appropriate marketing of examinations in Nigeria.
- To follow a programme of visits to schools/educational institutions/training providers to build relationships with existing and potential clients to expand the business.
- To assist in customer service, delivery of other examinations and other duties as required in this small office, especially in times of staff absences.
- To assist with preparation and submission of income reconciliations to agreed timescales.
- To record income correctly on the FABS (Finance and Business Support) system and in a timely manner.
- To comply with Contract and Procurement standards.
Continuing Professional Development:
- To ensure that elective and mandatory training is completed. To contribute to centre and national meetings and working groups.
- Country Exams Manager, Deputy Country Exams Manager, Examination Officers elsewhere in Nigeria and globally, Customer Service Staff Nigeria, Finance Manager Nigeria, Regional Exams Team, IELTS team, Professional Exams Team, Schools Team
- Vocational and higher education training providers in Nigeria and the UK. IELTS Regional Team. School Principals, Educational Agents, AISEN, APEN, ELTAN and other professional teaching associations; venue staff, enquirers, candidates.
- Bachelor’s degree in any Numerate course of study – Minimum / essential
- A qualification in examinations management – Desirable
- Shortlisting – Assessment Stage
Role Specific Knowledge & Experience:
- Providing and monitoring service within quality standards – Minimum / Essential
- Working quickly and accurately to tight deadlines – Minimum / Essential
- Experience of handling and reporting on payments from customers – Minimum / Essential
- Training and managing a team to deliver to quality standards – Minimum / Essential
- Arranging meetings with stakeholders – Minimum / Essential
- Experience of delivering examinations in a timely and secure manner – Desirable
- Shortlisting and Interview – Assessment Stage.
- Fluency in written and spoken English – Minimum / Essential
- Shortlisted candidates will need to demonstrate that they meet the required standard through the APTIS test which will be administered as part of the recruitment and selection exercise Shortlisting and interview – Minimum / Essential
- Shortlisting and Interview – Assessment Stage.
Deadline: 12th December, 2018