Principal Psychologist

Job Title: Principal Psychologist
Contract Type: Permanent
Location: Chelmsford
Salary: £46,000 - £57,000 per annum
Job Published: September 30, 2019 14:47

Job Description

Principal Psychologist

Reference: 25470

Primary Location - Chelmsford

£46,000 - £57,000 per annum


Please note the position available can either be one full-time or two part-time posts, based within the Adoption, SGO Support and D-Bit teams in Chelmsford.

This is an 8B post.

Please note if you want to apply for this role on a part time basis, you will be required to cover either 3 days or 18.5 hours.

Essex County Council (ECC) is one of the largest and most dynamic local authorities in the UK, serving a population of 2 million residents, and has a very successful track record of delivering transformational change. We are committed to becoming a place where individuals, partners and communities feel proud to play their role and genuinely want to belong. We’re immensely proud of our flexible working options.

Essex Children and Families Service were rated as ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted in January 2019. We are recognised as a service who have: an exceptional leadership team; a culture of collaboration, integrity and compassion; and who effectively promote the development and wellbeing of children, young people and their families; protecting them from neglect and abuse.

To improve services to children in the care of adopters, birth families, special guardians or foster carers. Essex are investing in new clinical/counselling psychologist posts, which will be based alongside teams throughout the County.

All post holders will work with partners to promote understanding of attachment and trauma and deliver a range of early help, family support and interventions which effectively support children’s placement or family stability.

The Role
Specific individual and shared targets and objectives will be defined within the performance management framework but in essence the post holder will:

  • Provide highly specialist psychological assessments
  • Provide therapeutic input through group work, specialist advice and training to professionals and carers
  • Work alongside a team of social workers, child and family support workers and mental health coordinators
  • Provide regular clinical supervision to mental health coordinators.

The post holder will work with considerable autonomy, within professional guidelines and the overall framework of Children and Families Services’ policies and procedures. The role will be fully clinically supervised and supported by a Consultant Clinical Psychologist alongside management from Social Care service managers.

Knowledge, skills and experience

  • Educated to doctoral level training in Clinical/ Counselling psychology (or its equivalent for those trained prior to 1996), including specific models of psychopathology, clinical psychometrics and neuropsychology, as accredited by the BPS/HCPC.
  • Registration with the Health and Care Professionals Council as a Practitioner Psychologist.
  • Post–doctoral training and recorded CPD experience and /or further qualifications in one or more additional specialised areas of psychological practice.
  • Substantial assessed experience of working as a qualified clinical or counselling psychologist at a highly specialist level.
  • Two or more distinct psychological therapies and lifespan developmental psychology, including knowledge and experience in working with attachment and trauma.
  • Some experience and/or interest in adoption/fostering/trauma/attachment/social care cases, including evidence of psychological assessment and treatment of clients across the full range of care settings, with particular emphasis on fostering, special guardianship or adoption
  • Experience of delivering teaching, training and/or supervision.
  • Well-developed skills in the ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing, complex, highly technical and/or clinically sensitive information to clients, their families, carers and other professional colleagues both within and outside of the Local Authority and NHS.
  • Skills in providing consultation to other professional and non-professional groups.
  • Evidence of continuing professional development, as recommended by the HCPC.
  • Knowledge of the theory and practice of main mental health disorders and presentations and, ideally, of specialised psychological therapies in specific difficult to treat groups (e.g. disorders of attachment, personality disorder, dual diagnoses, people with additional disabilities, ADHD, Autism \Spectrum, Foetal Alcohol Syndrome, etc.).

Qualification certificates should be brought to the interview.

The role requires you to be mobile throughout a wider operational area including travelling around the county of Essex and beyond, transporting service users and their belongings and to be able to do so in an emergency. Driving licence and car or the ability to meet the mobility requirements of the role through other means is essential.

Closing date for applications: 21 October 2019.

As part of employment with Essex County Council (ECC) should your role require a DBS check you will be required to register with the DBS update service. The DBS update service ensures all registered DBS certificates are kept up to date and allows authorised parties to view the status of your certificate. This is an annual subscription and you will be responsible for ensuring this is maintained. For further information on the DBS update service please go to

Essex County Council is proud to offer an excellent benefits package to all its employees. More information can be found on

Essex County Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment.

We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity is key to our success.