Governance Coordinator

Durham University

Governance Coordinator  (
Job Number:
University Secretary’s Office
Grade 5:  £25,285 – £28,131 per annum
Fixed Term  Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date
: 11-Jun-2023, 6:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable. 

The University

At Durham University we are proud of our people.  A globally outstanding centre of educational excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, a unique and historic setting – Durham is a university like no other. 
Across the University we have a huge variety of roles and career opportunities, which together make us a large and successful community, which is a key hub of activity within our region and nationally.  Whether you are at the very start, middle or end of your career, there is a role for you. We believe everyone has their own unique skills to offer. 
We would be thrilled if you would consider joining our thriving University.  Further information about the University can be found here

The Role and the Department

Governance Support Services (GSS) is located in the University Secretary’s Office (USO). The University Secretary is responsible for overseeing the University’s governance, assurance and compliance framework and processes and provides independent advice to the University governing body (Council), Senate and the Vice-Chancellor. GSS therefore operates at the highest level of University governance. The GSS team includes three Senior Governance Officers (SGO) and three Governance Coordinators.

The Governance Coordinator(s) support the SGOs and Head of GSS in providing administrative support to the University’s most senior governance committees, including Council and its committees, Senate and the University Executive and its committees. Governance Coordinator(s) liaise with senior members of University staff, including heads of faculties, departments, colleges as well as external stakeholders.

Governance Coordinator(s) help maintain administrative systems for logging, tracking and reporting on business items, making logistical arrangements for meetings, helping prepare draft agendas, collating and publishing meeting materials via an online portal, preparing minute templates, and managing the formal committee record. They also provide support to other governance activities (e.g., projects, initiatives, etc.) and the effective operation of USO and GSS business.

Governance Coordinators work as a team to provide an integrated administrative support service but also develop particular understanding of the committees for which they are the lead support coordinator.


This is a fixed term contract until 31st March 2024


Working at Durham  

A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following fantastic benefits: 

•    27 Days annual leave per year in addition to 8 public holidays and 4 customary days per year – a total of 39 days per year.  The University closes between Christmas and New Year .
•    No matter how you travel to work, we have you covered.  We have parking across campus, a cycle to work scheme which helps you to buy a bike and discount with local bus and train companies.
•    Lots of support for health and wellbeing including discounted membership for our state of the art sport and gym facilities and access to a 24-7 Employee Assistance Programme.
•    On site nursery is available and children’s clubs in the summer holidays.
•    Family friendly policies, including maternity and adoption leave, which are among the most generous in the higher education sector (and likely above and beyond many employers).
•    There is a genuine commitment to developing our colleagues professionally and personally.  There is a comprehensive range of development courses, apprenticeships and access to qualifications and routes to develop your career in the University.  All staff have dedicated annual time to concentrate on their personal development opportunities. 
•    The opportunity to take part in staff volunteering activities to make a difference in the local community
•    Discounts are available via our benefits portal including; money off at supermarkets, high street retailers, IT products such as Apple, the cinema and days out at various attractions. 
•    We offer generous pension schemes. 


Durham University is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion

Our collective aim is to create an open and inclusive environment where everyone can reach their full potential and we believe our staff should reflect the diversity of the global community in which we work.  As a University equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) are a key part of the University’s Strategy and a central part of everything we do.  We also live by our values and our Staff Code of Conduct.  At Durham we actively work towards providing an environment where our staff and students can study, work and live in a community which is supportive and inclusive. It’s important to us that all of our colleagues are aligned to both our values and commitment to EDI.

We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force including people with disabilities, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.  If you have taken time out of your career, and you feel it relevant, let us know about it in your application.  If you are a candidate with a disability, we are committed to ensuring fair treatment throughout the recruitment process. We will make adjustments to support the interview process wherever it is reasonable to do so and, where successful, reasonable adjustments will be made to support people within their role.

What you need to demonstrate when you apply/Person Specification  
When you apply it is important that you let us know what skills/experience you have from a similar role and/or what skills/experience you have which would make you right for this role.  Further information about the role and responsibilities is at the end of this job description.  Where a criteria has an asterisk* next to it, it may be given additional weighting when your application is considered.    


When you apply it is important that you let us know what skills/experience you have from a similar role and/or what skills/experience you have which would make you right for this role.  Further information about the role and responsibilities is at the end of this job description.


Your application should cover the following criteria:

Essential Criteria

1.    Five GCSE’s at least Grade C or level four (or equivalent) including English Language and Mathematics or a Post-16 qualification or equivalent experience.
2.    Experience of working in a busy office environment delivering front line administrative services to a high standard.
3.    Experience of managing time to meet deadlines and working under pressure without compromising on quality.
4.    Experience of providing advice and guidance to a range of customers and colleagues.

5.    Excellent spoken and written communication skills including the ability to develop effective working relationships, both internally and externally.
6.    Strong digital competence across a range of digital devices and apps including,  Microsoft 365 applications and business systems.
7.    Ability to solve problems yourself and as part of a team and resolve issues, plan solutions and make pragmatic decisions.
8.    Committed to continuing professional development.
9.    Ability to participate in networks to share and discuss good practice and exchange information.
Desirable Criteria

1.    Experience and expertise in providing high quality secretarial support to committees

2.    Experience and proven ability to design and implement office systems and procedures

How to apply

To progress to the assessment stage, candidates must evidence each of the essential criteria required for the role in the person specification above.  Where there are desirable criteria we would also urge you to provide any relevant evidence.  Please don’t forget to check if there is any weighted criteria (see above).

While some criteria will be considered at the shortlisting stage, other criteria may be considered later in the assessment process, such as questions at interview.  

Submitting your application 

We prefer to receive applications online.  We will update you about your application at various points during the process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system. Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to ensure you receive all emails 
What you are required to submit:
•    A CV 
•    A supporting statement which shows examples of how you meet all of the essential and desirable criteria within the Person Specification  

Contact details 
If you would like to have a chat or ask any questions about the role, James Walsh would be happy to speak to you. [email protected]

Typical Role Requirements  

Service Delivery

•         Show a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and the University’s values.

•         Ensure that relevant regulatory and professional standards ensuring compliance with University Statutes, Regulations, Policies and Procedures are being used within services being delivered by your team.

•         Help to develop and implement policies and procedures relating to your service area.

•         Respond to queries and provide information/advice, while raising more specialist or complex queries with more experienced team members.

•         Use your experience and problem-solving skills to investigate and resolve issues relevant to your role such as support of the scheduling of business for the USO and GSS Teams as well as the University’s governance framework and make recommendations based on your findings.

•         Monitor and evaluate service delivery to ensure compliance with University Statutes, Regulations, Policies and Procedures, including Governance Handbooks.

•         Collaborate with internal and external partners to ensure seamless service provision supporting the USO and GSS Teams as well as the University’s governance framework.

•         Monitor and maintain information to ensure accuracy and completeness in support of the scheduling of business for the USO and GSS Teams as well as the University’s governance framework.

•         Analyse data and information and provide reports for higher level decision makers, as required.

•         Prepare written reports for consideration by management and/or committee members, as required.

•         Contribute to the development and implementation of policy and procedures within area of working.

•         Continually review what is required from staff,  to make sure the best possible service is provided.

•         Ensure that processes and business systems effectively support the services being delivered by the team.

•         Ensure that data is accurate and provide reports and analysis of patterns and trends to senior colleagues.

•         Capture and share information and data that needs to be shared with relevant networks and committees.

•         Prepare reports for senior managers.


Planning and Organising

•    Plan and organise own workload to deliver the role.

•    Organise and schedule assigned resources, activities and events.

•    Monitor processes and activities to ensure team priorities are met.



•    Provide specialist support and advice to team members on governance matters.

•    Explain and provide instruction to other team members on how to correctly record and manage data.

•    Make changes to the services provided by your team in discussion with other team members.

•    Identify opportunities and contribute to decisions on how to improve services being delivered by the team.

•    Seek feedback from staff and anyone else that you come across as part of your role on their requirements from your service and recommend improvements to senior colleagues.



•    Use your knowledge and expertise to provide advice and guidance to resolve problems and respond to a wide range of queries.

•    Provide instruction and demonstrations to others within University Secretary’s Office.

•    Create good working relationships with other team members and anyone else that you come across as part of your role to work together on joint activities.

•    Liaise with staff in other areas, to ensure that services are being delivered in an efficient and collaborative way.

•    Create good working relationships with internal and external partners and suppliers to work together on joint activities.

•    Build relationships with contacts and contribute to internal and external networks to share good practice and exchange information.

•    Liaise with external specialists and service providers to plan the delivery of services and events.


•    Any other reasonable duties.

Please note that in submitting your application Durham University will be processing your data. We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement Privacy Notices – Durham University  which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.  


When appointing to this role the University must ensure that it meets any applicable immigration requirements, including salary thresholds which are applicable to some visas

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