Livingston James is delighted to be supporting Colleges Scotland with another critical role – Director of the Employers’ Association

*Please note this opportunity is now closed to further applications. Should you be interested in similar roles and wish to have an exploratory discussion, please contact Douglas Adam at [email protected].


Colleges Scotland is the collective voice for the college sector, and as the membership body, represents three strategic regional bodies and all 26 colleges in Scotland, which deliver both further education and around 26% of the provision of all higher education in Scotland.

Collaboration is essential if Scotland is to continue building a world-class education system, and the college sector is committed to working with partners across the public, private, third sector, and trade unions to capitalise on societal transformations, digital innovations, and changing demands in education.

Enabling the effective delivery of the National Bargaining Agenda, the College Scotland Employers’ Association:

  • Supports its members to achieve their collective ambitions whilst also ensuring they have the workforce and resources to deliver excellence for their students.
  • Delivers progress and sustainable outcomes for college staff in partnership with the recognised staff trade unions. This takes place through the effective national collective bargaining forum of the National Joint Negotiating Committee.


Ensuring Colleges Scotland Employers’ Association effectively supports members to achieve their collective ambition, the new Director will:

  • Ensure the Employers’ Association has a clear direction, identity and voice and takes both ownership of, and a proactive approach to, National Bargaining.
  • Develop and maintain effective relationships with a range of external stakeholders (including Scottish Government, Scottish Funding Council, college chairs and principals and trade unions) to deliver true partnership working.
  • Work closely with the relevant key personnel, including both interim Joint Secretaries, to ensure agreement is reached, at both a strategic and operational level, to enable the delivery of the National Bargaining agenda.
  • Ensure, through established negotiation mechanisms, that appropriate pay and grading models and national conditions of service are agreed and implemented.
  • As a key spokesperson for the Employers’ Association, represent the sector at a national level on key National Bargaining areas ensuring the organisation’s contribution to the national agenda is valued and impactful.
  • Lead on the development of Scottish Funding Council Business Cases to secure funding / deliver additional resources.
  • Drive innovation and best practice across all employment relations activities.
  • As a member of Colleges Scotland’s small Executive team, directly contribute to the development of strategies and operational plans that ensure the achievement of Colleges Scotland’s strategic aims.


The successful candidate will be a strategic and solutions focused leader with excellent stakeholder management experience coupled with a proven track record in building and maintaining a wide range of collaborative relationships and partnerships. Whilst previous involvement in advising on strategic HR/employment relations issues and relevant exposure to both trade union negotiation and consultation processes would be beneficial it is not essential.

An accomplished communicator the successful candidate will also be able to demonstrate:

  • Experience of leading the development, implementation and delivery of strategies and large-scale projects.
  • Relevant employment legislation knowledge, or the ability to quickly gain an understanding of, pay systems, pay bargaining, employment relations, workforce development systems and benchmarking processes.
  • Strong ambassadorial and presentation skills with the ability to express views convincingly and coherently using a variety of media.
  • Relevant employee management experience including involvement in managing and mitigating employment relation issues and risks.
  • Strong political acuity coupled with the ability to operate effectively and rationally in a highly politicised environment.


Colleges Scotland is currently reviewing working arrangements which include agile working and whilst this post is based in Stirling, it is envisaged that the successful candidate would not necessarily need to be in the office on a full-time basis.

This is a unique and exciting opportunity that will directly support a sector involved in increasing inclusive and sustainable economic growth in Scotland. To learn more about the role please see the profile below or visit


Colleges Scotland – Director of Employers’ Association PP


Colleges Scotland is an equal opportunities employer and positively encourages applications from suitably qualified and eligible candidates regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief, marital status or pregnancy and maternity.

All third party introductions will be forwarded to Livingston James.

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