National Health & Safety, General Manager

Base is negotiable but there will be a requirement to regularly attend meetings in the Corporate Office, Heuston South Quarter, Dublin 8
 Salary:  See Description for Details
Other   Permanent
Closing Date: 17/02/2020 Closing Time: 12:00
Recruitment start: 23/01/2020


Job Summary

The Child and Family Agency was established on 1st January 2014 and is responsible for improving wellbeing and outcomes for children. It represents the most comprehensive reform of services for the development, welfare and protection of children and the support of families ever undertaken in Ireland. It is an ambitious move which brings together some 4,000 staff who were previously employed within Children and Family Services of the Health Service Executive, the National Educational Welfare Board and the Family Support Agency.

The Child and Family Agency has responsibility for the following range of services:

  • Child Welfare and Protection Services, including family support services
  • Family Resource Centres and associated national programmes
  • Early years (pre-school) Inspection Services
  • Educational Welfare responsibilities including School completion programmes and Home School Liaison
  • Domestic, sexual and gender based violence services
  • Services related to the psychological welfare of children
  • Adoption & Alternative Care

Further information is available on www.tusla.ie

Purpose of Role:

  • To provide technical guidance and support to Tusla Child and Family Agency at a national level for the development, implementation and ongoing review of the Tusla Safety and Health Management System, ensuring continuous improvement based on systematic organisational learning.
  • To set up, maintain and improve systems that underpin an effective integrated health and safety governance system at a corporate level.
  • To provide specialist advice, guidance and instruction regarding health and safety matters to the Board, Senior Management Team, senior managers and others, ensuring that Tusla meets statutory obligations and achieves high standards of health and safety compliance.
  • To liaise with external stakeholders such as the State Claims Agency and the Health and Safety Authority on an ongoing basis.

Job Objectives

Main Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Act as the organisation’s lead in the development, establishment, oversight and review of Tusla’s National Health and Safety Management System and implementation plan.
  • Develop and oversee the organisations strategic approach to the management of health and safety at a national level (including the establishment of national objectives and targets with relevant to health and safety risk management).
  • Promote a positive safety and health culture in Tusla through the establishment of robust health and safety processes and risk management controls.
  • Lead on the development of national policies, procedures, protocols and guidance relevant to occupational health and safety matters.
  • To manage the National Health and Safety Department (Health and safety specialist team and administrative supports).
  • Provide health and safety advice and guidance to the Tusla Board, Senior Management Team, management and staff on an on-going basis in accordance with health and safety statutory and other requirements.

Corporate Governance

  • Establish and maintain procedures, including monitoring and other means such as review and auditing, to ensure that the Board and the Senior Management Team are accurately appraised on the management of health and safety compliance in Tusla.
  • Provide input into the Corporate and Business Plan process (objectives and targets) to meet specific health and safety requirements on a risk based approach.
  • Review and update as appropriate Tusla’s National Health and Safety Management System.
  • Manage the budgetary process for the National Health and Safety Department, including the preparation of business case submissions for resources to address specific occupational risk management deficits.
  • Provide guidance to all managers and staff and contribute to the development of corporate policy and decision making activity.
  • Respond to changes in legislation and national policy in relation to health and safety and develop policies to ensure compliance and implementation on an ongoing basis.
  • Provide ongoing update and input into the Corporate Risk Register on items of health and safety risk at a national level and to similarly ensure health and safety risk at a departmental.
  • Establish robust systems to allow for appropriate organisational responses to be applied to national recommendations relevant to health and safety risk management from internal and external sources.
  • Act as lead liaison with the Health and Safety Authority on health and safety management matters arising at a national level.
  • Act as liaison with the State Claims Agency on health and safety management strategies aimed at reducing the incidence of harm and providing advice and support to claims management structures to reduce cost to Tusla.
  • Update, maintain and review the Corporate and Departmental Risk Register relevant to health and safety risk.

Service development

  • Develop, maintain and monitor implementation of a three-year occupational health and safety management action plan and report on progress to the Tusla Board and Senior Management Team on a regular basis.
  •  Develop a comprehensive suite of policies, procedures and guidance as appropriate on all matters of occupational health and safety risk pertinent to the Agency.
  • Advise the Tusla Board and Senior Management Team on planning for safety and health, including the setting of realistic short medium and long term objectives, priorities and establishing adequate systems and performance standards for health and safety management and oversight at a national level.
  • Ensure that health and safety management is effectively integrated within all directorates and activities of the Agency (e.g. Child Protection and Welfare Strategy, Estates Strategy, HR recruitment and retention strategy etc.)
  • Work closely with the line managers to coach, encourage and support a positive and proactive culture of Health & Safety – including the development and implementation of appropriate policies.
  • Ensure that systems are in place to evaluate and review performance against agreed targets and performance indicators.
  • Liaise with the Quality Assurance Directorate to ensure appropriate and effective procedures for reporting, investigating, recording and analysing incidents are developed and revised at suitable intervals.
  • Develop and maintain effective systems for Tusla wide learning and improvement with regard to health and safety.
  • Ensure effective processes for document management (ensuring privacy by design is applied to all data processing activities undertaken by the (National Health and Safety) Department.
  • Liaise with key internal stakeholders to identify strategies and prioritise actions for managing risk.


  • Ensure that senior managers are informed of changes to legislation and actions required to ensure compliance with respect of health and safety management.
  • Promote Tusla health and safety education and training programmes for national implementation.
  • Foster and promote a positive health and safety culture where staff learn from incidents report adverse incidents in a timely manner.
  • Establish and develop national processes for health and safety consultation and engagement (e.g. Health and Safety Committee’s).
  • Provide health and safety technical expertise, advice and support to the Agency’s National Health and Safety Steering Committee.
  • Work in partnership with other internal work groups and colleagues, leading and directing areas of work as appropriate.

The above Job Description is not intended to be a comprehensive list of all duties involved and consequently, the post holder may be required to perform other duties as appropriate to the post which may be assigned to him/her from time to time and to contribute to the development of the post while in office. 

Please refer to the Candidate Information pack attached to this campaign for full and further detail.

Skills Required

Applicants must by the closing date of application have the following:

  • Possess a third level qualification in Health & Safety (minimum level 8 recognised on the NFQ).
  • At least 5 years’ experience of successfully implementing health and safety management systems in a complex, multi-site organisation.
  • Experience of establishing organisational Health and Safety arrangements and systems.
  • Experience leading an organisation through internal/external enforcement and compliance audits
  • have the requisite knowledge and ability (including a high standard of suitability and management ability) for the proper discharge of the duties of the office


A candidate for and any person holding the office must be fully competent and capable of undertaking the duties attached to the office and be in a state of health such as would indicate a reasonable prospect of ability to render regular and efficient service.


Each candidate for and any person holding the office must be of good character


Age restrictions shall only apply to a candidate where he/she is not classified as a new entrant within the meaning of the Public Services Superannuation Act, 2004).

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