Author Topic: "diary of a benefits scrounger" blogger now working for Maximus.  (Read 24680 times)

lankou

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Just the relevant bit copied and pasted:-

http://diaryofabenefitscrounger.blogspot.co.uk/2015/01/new-job.html

And so to the point. From today, I will be responsible for making sure that as many of those improvements are made during this period of change and pause as possible. MAXIMUS have asked me to be their Head of Customer Experience, and it seems, have given me fairly free reign to devise a strategy to bring about a wide range of improvements to the service from a customer perspective.
The job covers all aspects of customer experience and the easiest thing I can do is copy the job description below.  I hope anyone I've already lost to explosions of horror might at least take a look at it and imagine me doing the job. It is not insignificant in scope.


Of course there are considerable benefits to both myself and MAXIMUS in this development. I will be giving the same 300% passion and commitment to them that I have been giving to campaigning. I won't be writing about them, I'll be working with them.


Crucially, it's a campaigner's job  to change things, not just to make a lot of noise. That noise is supposed to lead society, stakeholders and commentators to the point where real change can be achieved.


In the last 6 years, I never felt that was the case, but at this moment in time, finding myself in this exceptionally unexpected situation, I simply believe that I can do more good now, here, by doing this, than I can do with all of my other interests.


Whilst I have to make an enormous - almost cosmic - mindset shift to take this direction, MAXIMUS also have to bring me into their trust and with very little to go on, accept that I will attempt to do the job as skilfully and imaginatively as I can. My past opinions have hardly been filtered. Everyone knows that I'm obsessive about changing this, Giving me a job to keep me quiet would be to not know me at all.


I've had just 3 weeks to think about all of this and come to terms with it. I've already done my worrying and wondering and weighing up. I've already had to decide to change absolutely every last thing about my life and take this step. My husband will give up work - he's already resigned to support me and care for us all, amazing man. I will be working full time, I will lose almost every bit of support I currently get from the social system, I will face criticism, I might hurt people who are disappointed. These are all huge considerations.


But I have to try to finish what I started. MAXIMUS have the contract. Things are being re-thought now. The election period is coming now. The job was available now.


Someone is going to do it. I can do it, with all of my knowledge and personal experience of what is wrong with the system at the moment and a rich research background to draw on from the Spartacus Network reports and all of the other amazing research done by DPOs, charities, individuals, groups and academics over the last few years.


If everything continues as before, if change is achingly slow and the reputation of ESA remains as toxic as it ever was, then by me taking on this job, it won't be because no-one cared. It won't be because no-one knew what needed to be done. I believe that I know what to do and there's no doubt that I care. Harrington and Litchfield have recommended what to do, the Work and Pensions Committee have recommended what to do. My own Spartacus Network and many others have recommended what to do.


Now it just needs to be done. Positive change will take time, but I believe I can help effect that change.  Whatever becomes of ESA and WCAs and whatever party wins power and however public opinion waxes and wanes, whatever assessment may or may not exist now and in the future, it has to be as good as it can be.


Whoever administers the contract - and now it will be MAXIMUS - if they can make it caring, dignified and clear to understand, whilst making it very clear that decisions are ultimately not taken by them, but by the DWP, then there is no reason for this to be a toxic contract. Clearly, I hope it won't be. I hope I can make a difference, and I'm confident that if I can't, then no-one could have.


My life will change completely, as will the lives of my family. Yet again, they will throw every last card up into the air and support me to do what I need to do. And I do need to at least try to do it. I need to see if WCAs can become something people don't dread or disdain. But the thing that won't change is my commitment to trying to get it right. That will never change whoever I work for and whatever I do."




Job Description


JOB DESCRIPTION
Job Title:                   Head of Customer Experience
Reporting to:            Service Management and Improvement Director

Purpose of the role

Reporting to the Service Management and Improvement Director, the Head of Customer Experience will continuously appraise the various aspects of our service to deliver and focus improvements from the perspective of the customer going through the experience.

Key Accountabilities

Define and communicate the new Customer Experience vision by fully engaging with internal colleagues as well external parties including the Customer Reference Group, and other interested stakeholders.
Outline “the journey” to achieve the customer experience vision including key landmarks and measures of success.
Undertake research and analysis activities to build a first-hand understanding of the current customer experience as seen through the claimants’ eyes, across all touch points.  Establish an improvement cycle by formalising regular inputs from stakeholders, claimant complaints received, quality assurance findings, and other sources.
In collaboration with the leadership team, managers, IT and other relevant departments identify potential service improvements that would enhance the experience of customers. This will require the Head of Customer Experience to work collaboratively with all business leads and stakeholders and contribute to the development of business cases for improvements.
Play an ambassadorial role in developing a stronger “customer experience” mind-set and culture within the business, ensuring that all employees are absolutely consistent in their understanding of what their contribution is to the customer experience.
Report on the activities conducted, summary of findings and recommendations made on a monthly basis.
Continue to develop practices and build a collaborative network of internal and external stakeholders with the goal of establishing a strong reputation for customer focus and improvement.

CANDIDATE PROFILE


Essential Experience
Able to demonstrate experience in a leadership role with an established relevant network in the sector and a reputation for delivering exceptional “customer experience.”
Strategic planning & delivery leadership.
Experience of operational management
Project leadership on a multi-site, multi-stakeholder level
Competencies
Creativity to innovate
Analytical, research orientated
Commercial acumen – justifying investment
Customer engagement/focus
Project management – delivery focussed
Change orientated
Influencing skills
Attention to detail
Communication & presentation skills
Decisive leadership
Inspirational
Results orientated


DarthVector

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I wish her luck, and I hope she succeeds in improving things.

oldtone27

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What a wonderful load of waffle. I think that is deliberate in respect of the blog. I hope it is.

Reading the blog I found myself asking - What's the job?

Reading the description I find myself asking - What's the job?

It seems vaguely about customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction about what exactly?

I presume it is about the 'benefits system' but that is more courtesy of Lankou's title than the content of the piece.

Like Darth, I hope she improve things, but I am not sure what things. The descriptions are meaningless which leaves me to conclude the job is meaningless and probably provided to tick some bureaucratic box or other.

I may be an old cynic but stuff like this reinforces my cynicism.  >confused<

lankou

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I may be an old cynic but stuff like this reinforces my cynicism.  >confused<

It does smack of promoting the Bolshie shop steward to a management non-job in order to get a peaceful life.

Sunshine

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I am thinking good luck to her and good luck to us because it sounds like we still need it.

I wish she had not said the bit in the second part of this sentence,

Quote
I hope I can make a difference, and I'm confident that if I can't, then no-one could have.

It would be fantastic if Maximus were to come to message boards like Ouch Too and ask for our input, but unfortunately I don't think that is going to happen anytime soon.

DarthVector

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In my experience, most job descriptions are written by people who know nothing about the job. I've had a fair few jobs where I didn't find out exactly what I'd be doing until I'd been in the job for a week or two.

It's particularly obvious when you have an HR / admin person trying to write an engineering job description, because the result tends to either make no sense at all, or require so much knowledge & experience that you'd need to discover the Fountain of Youth to acquire it.

oldtone27

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I'm still not clear what the job IS. Does anyone know?  >erm<

Offworld

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So does she now subscribe to the doctrines of Unum and the political/corporate establishment's
ideological perspective on the  relationship between economic system, people, work and country?
 >confused<  If not, how could she do that job?

lankou

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I'm still not clear what the job IS. Does anyone know?  >erm<

I think you mean can someone please translate the job description in the thread opener into English.

Sunshine

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The pay grade and hours of work might be good to know too.

It is proving a difficult thread for me to post to because I don't want to be suspicious or negative after all I might be working with Sue in the future  ;-)  >lol<

I read more of what Sue had written on this blog post and what she says about the ESA Support Group is unsettling.

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Though my application was successful, the letter to confirm my "success" - being written off to a lifetime of £108 per week - was almost unintelligible even to my admittedly illness addled, but nonetheless, degree-educated brain.

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It is not inherently a good thing for Support Group numbers to be high. If some of those people who qualify would actually rather like to work, but are terrified of an intimidating and farcical system of support that actually leads to a life of fear of change. Being terrified of an assessment letter or experiencing actual anxiety and distress every time a brown envelope from the DWP falls through the door is never going to lead people to engage. I know, I wouldn't have dreamt of it. I was terrified of the brown envelopes myself and I hoped a sensible system could be in place before I ever had to go near another ESA assessment. However, it's a brave company that attempts to make reasonable adjustments for my kind of impairment and any that does will face many new challenges.

When Sue was was award ESA Support Group she was posting about how sick she was etc and anyone who is that sick should be put in the Support Group because it is there for people who can't or shouldn't work. A quick Google search of all the obstacles sick and disabled people face in day to day living shows that all but the 'favoured' (eeeek I don't like that word but it fits) all but the favoured few are going to have to accept how life really is and make the best og it.

It is also worth mentioning that Sue blogged about a recent operation being successful and her health improving. At the time I read about that I did think Sue's job prospects would improve.


Offworld

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Quote
It is not inherently a good thing for Support Group numbers to be high. If some of those people who qualify would actually rather like to work, but are terrified of an intimidating and farcical system of support that actually leads to a life of fear of change. Being terrified of an assessment letter or experiencing actual anxiety and distress every time a brown envelope from the DWP falls through the door is never going to lead people to engage.
If that's the concern, then surely advocating in favour of Citizens Income would make more sense than going to pr-front for an  American multinational appointed by the UK convergence-with-USA political establishment to impose the Unum line on illness, disability and "work"?

And isn't "lead people to engage" an IDS type of phrase?

Sunshine

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Quote
And isn't "lead people to engage" an IDS type of phrase?

It is a phrased people in power often use to talk about how they need people to entire a dialogue with those in power so the people can learn and understand the status quo needs to be maintains. For people who watched the old Body Snatchers tv series the word podded was used to describe 'bringing people over to aliens way of thinking'.

Leading people to engage can be a good thing as long as the people involved know the reality of situations and are not given false hope or made to feel they are the ones who are wrong headed.

Mabelcat

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It's a dilemma.  Do you agitate from outside the system or subvert and try to influence from within?  As a service user consultant employed by the NHS I constantly ask myself this question.  I'm not sure there's a right answer.

KizzyKazaer

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So does she now subscribe to the doctrines of Unum and the political/corporate establishment's
ideological perspective on the  relationship between economic system, people, work and country?
 >confused<  If not, how could she do that job?

It has to be said, if you want change, you stand a better chance of effecting it if you're 'on the inside', as it were.  This doesn't mean you have to leave all your ideals at the door!

However, like Sunshine, I was a little dismayed to read this bit:

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I hope I can make a difference, and I'm confident that if I can't, then no-one could have.

Obviously it would be great if that difference can be made, but isn't it just a little arrogant to assume that one is the only person that can do it?

I wish her all the best, though.

Fiz

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I think they have dressed her up as the child catcher and given her a horse and candy cart .. come and get your lollipops, nothing to be afraid of at your wca .. but the cage won't change