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To me, applying for a new job is a bit like buying a new house. It’s a really significant thing to do, but you often only get some official paperwork and a brief look around what you’re thinking of buying, be it a new house, or a new boss, organisational culture and set of work opportunities and challenges. You eventually move in and it’s only then that you really discover what you’ve really bought.

So, for anyone who’s had a look at the Director of Member Services job description and is interested, I’m going to try and set out a bit more about the opportunity: the context, our ethos and priorities, who you’d be working for and with, and why the role is available.

More about the role

Firstly, the easy bit – the role is available because Elaine Wiscombe, our first ever Director of Member Services, is retiring after an extremely successful 8 ½ years in the role. Then some context – she joined us after the PPF Board made the strategic decision to insource PPF member services in response to our growing membership and given that looking after our members, alongside managing the Fund, is the core of what PPF is here to do. The Board wanted to set a vision of exceptional service for our 430,000+ members, and for the organisation to be in control of delivering it.

We insourced PPF member services in 2015, followed by FAS member services in 2018, and have been delighted to win a number of awards since, including the Institute of Customer Service’s Best Customer Experience award in 2017, a ringing endorsement that we’d achieved our objective of benchmarking ourselves against the best customer service, wherever that may be found. We want our members to trust us because we do what we say we’ll do, our people to be proud to be part of the team, and our services and the way we operate to be innovative and continuously improving.

With increasing competition for a decreasing pool of experienced defined benefit pensions administrators, we’ve invested a great deal in growing our own talent, with an in-house training and quality assurance team, strong internal career development opportunities, and a successful pensions administration apprenticeship programme under our belts. This has paid off, with excellent retention rates, and an engaged bunch of employees.

Members are generally able to contact us through their channel of choice, and we provide an excellent service across all channels. We’ve been at the forefront of offering digital services to our members, and want to continue to develop that channel further, whilst also ensuring that we meet the needs of all our members.

You’d be working for the Chief Customer Officer, currently me, a member of both the PPF’s Executive Committee and Board, and someone who’s been involved with the PPF from the very beginning, who feels deeply passionate about what we do and how we do it. Your other senior management colleagues would be the Director of Scheme Services, who oversees the scheme assessment process and member complaints, amongst other things, and the Director of Performance Improvement, who is responsible for a range of important support functions including our Technical team, our Quality Assurance and Training team, and our Digital team.

Interested in applying?

If you’d like to find out more, I’d love to have an informal chat, and Elaine, the current role holder, would also be happy to speak to anyone – just get in touch with me or Gary Brignall, my Recruitment colleague, and we’ll set something up.

Sara Protheroe is our Chief Customer Officer