Vacancy -- Chief Nursing Officer for Wales

Recruitment Principles

The Welsh Government's recruitment processes are underpinned by the principle of selection for appointment on merit on the basis of fair and open competition as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles.

Vacancy Details

Health and Social Services
Senior Civil Service 2
Circa £93,000
Full time (applications are welcome from people who work part time, as part of a job share or who work full time)
Pan Wales

Closing Date

15/02/2021, 13:00

Purpose of Post

The Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) is the head of the nursing and midwifery professions in Wales and as such sets the professional agenda and future direction for these professions. Given the impact of the professions on improving health and delivering world class safe and effective healthcare, the role supports the achievement of the best health and care outcomes by providing transformational leadership of the professions. The post holder is the senior adviser to the Welsh Government on all matters related to nursing and midwifery education and practice.

The CNO provides expert professional advice on nursing and midwifery matters in health and social care, including legislation – specifically the Nurse Staffing Levels (Wales) Act 2016. The Office of the Chief Nursing Officer (OCNO) also has policy responsibilities in relation to maternity and breast feeding services, quality and safety of care in NHS Wales (in tandem with the Chief Medical Officer) and promoting the health of learning disabled people. The officials within the OCNO work with a number of other directorates within the Health and Social Services group providing expert professional advice to support delivery of Welsh Government priorities.

As a Director within the Welsh Government, the CNO is accountable to the Director General Health and Social Services/ Chief Executive NHS Wales and as a member of the Health and Social Services Group Executive Directors Team will participate fully in the corporate management of the Welsh Government’s Health and Social Services Directorates.

The CNO has clear responsibility of part of that leadership team to drive forward delivery of the Welsh Government objectives for Health and Social Services set out in ‘A Healthier Wales’, ten year strategy, as well as performance of services measured against the national performance framework. The post holder performs a significant professional role in the Welsh Government’s oversight of the NHS Wales’ delivery and performance as a whole.

The CNO provides leadership of the Nursing and Midwifery professions within Welsh Government and externally, collaborating effectively with senior leaders across NHS Boards, Council of Deans Wales, Trade Unions, Professional Organisations, Care Home sector, UK government directorates, UK wide professional organisations, the Nursing & Midwifery Council and other UK wide regulators, as well as other partners to support and ensure the delivery of Welsh Government priorities.

The CNO will have responsibility for approximately 15 staff.

Disability Confident

Welsh Government accepts the social definition of disability, in which it is recognised that barriers in society act to disable people who have impairments or health conditions or who use British Sign Language. We are committed to removing barriers so that all (or potential new staff) can perform at their best. The Equality Act 2010 uses the medical definition of disability (“a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term impact on a person’s ability to carry out normal day to day activities”).

We guarantee to interview anyone who is disabled whose application meets the minimum criteria for the post. By ‘minimum criteria’ we mean that you must provide us with evidence in your application which demonstrates that you generally meet the level of competence for the role and any qualifications, skills or experience defined as essential. We are committed to the employment and career development of disabled people.

If you have an impairment or health condition, or use British Sign Language and need to discuss reasonable adjustments for any part of this recruitment process, or wish to discuss how we will support you if you were to be successful, please email as soon as possible and a member of the team will contact you to discuss your requirements and any questions you may have.

A Great Place to Work for Veterans

This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans initiative.

Welsh Language Requirements

The Welsh Government is a bilingual organisation and Welsh language skills are considered an asset to the organisation. We encourage and support staff to learn, develop and use their Welsh language skills in the workplace. 

The following list of language requirements represents an objective assessment by the line manager on behalf of the Welsh Government of the Welsh language skills required to undertake the duties of this particular post.

Welsh language skills need to be learnt when appointed

Social Partnership

In Welsh Government, the relationship between the employer and trade unions is based on social partnership. We believe our goals can best be achieved by management and trade unions working together.

Our 3 recognised trade unions are:
•         PCS
•         Prospect
•         FDA

This relationship is underpinned by a partnership agreement. This sets out how our unions work with Welsh Government on issues such as:
•         pay
•         terms and conditions
•         policies and procedures
•         organisational change.

Our Welsh Government trade union colleagues work together to give their members a real say in the workplace. They make sure that the interests of their members are promoted and protected. They also help reduce inequalities and improve terms and conditions.

The Welsh Government has an excellent track record of working in partnership with its trade unions. We encourage staff to get involved. We support you to join a recognised trade union, to ensure your voice is heard in the workplace. and to learn more about trade unions and partnership working.

Assessment Process

Shortlisted candidates will take part in a media exercise w/c 15 March 2021 via Microsoft Teams.

Shortlisted candidates will take part in a Fireside Chat with the Minister for Health and Social Services w/c 15 March 2021 via Microsoft Teams.

Interviews will take place late March/early April 2021. These will also take place virtually via Microsoft Teams. Interviews will last around 45 minutes.

How to apply

Completed application form, an up to date CV, together with a personal statement of suitability for the post should be submitted by the closing date.  All applications for this vacancy should be made online via the Welsh Government's online application system.  If you have an impairment which would prevent you from applying on-line, please e-mail to request an application pack in an alternative format or if you need to request a reasonable adjustment related to an impairment in order to submit your application.

To apply, you'll need to have an account on our online application system.  Click the 'Apply' button below, and you'll be asked to 'Log in' if you already have an account, or 'Register' if you don't yet have an account.  Registration takes just a few minutes to complete.  You'll need an e-mail address to be able to register.  Once you've registered for an account and logged in, you'll be taken to the online application form, which you'll need to fully complete and submit before the deadline on the closing date.  

If you’d like to apply for this vacancy in Welsh, please use the ‘Newid Iaith / Change Language’ link at the top of this page, to take you to the Welsh version of this advert, from which you can apply in Welsh.

For further information regarding the Senior Civil Service recruitment process within the Welsh Government, please see the SCS Recruitment Guidance for External Candidates (link). Further guidance on Preparing Your Personal Statement (link) is also available.

When evidencing your suitability for the post, it is recommended that you refer to the Civil Service Competency Framework (link)

Other information about the vacancy

All applications for this vacancy will be anonymised at the sift stage. The panel will take into account your personal statement and CV but, these documents should be anonymised when you submit your application.
Interviews will take place late March/early April 2021.
Dr Andrew Goodall on

This vacancy is closed to applications.