Elections Manager

Councils are responsible for organising all elections held in the UK: parliamentary general elections, European parliamentary elections, council elections and any by-elections.  Elections Managers oversee the register of electors and are responsible for ensuring that the election process runs smoothly.

Work Environment
The work is mainly office-based.  The standard working week is 37 hours but there may be a need to work extra anti-social hours at busy election times and on polling day.

Daily Activities
Elections managers have regular contact with their elections staff and the council's legal services team.  They also liaise with client departments, MPs, council members, central government departments, other public bodies and external agencies.  Their main responsibilities are to:

  • liaise with all users of the service on any matters relating to electoral services and give advice and guidance on legislative and procedural issues;
  • be responsible for designing and disseminating all the statutory documentation produced;
  • prepare reports for the Council, the Executive Board, Scrutiny Boards and other committees;
  • make sure Parliamentary and European Parliamentary election accounts to the Home Officer on behalf of the Returning Officer are accurate and on time;
  • ensure that there are systems in place for the storage and destruction of material following local elections and, in connection with a Parliamentary election, arrange for all documentation to be dispatched to the Clerk of the Crown;
  • manage polling sites and polling district boundaries;
  • organise a record of election candidates and agents;
  • oversee the election candidate nomination process.

Elections managers also have overall management responsibility for the elections team and may also be asked to undertake wider corporate duties, such as:

  • taking the lead on the implications of review and inspection regimes;
  • undertaking people management related tasks such as: equal opportunities, sickness absence, recruitment and selection, training and development, disciplinary matters, discrimination complaints etc.;
  • allocating resources within the department generally.

Skills & Interests
Election managers need to be:

  • interested in politics; 
  • able to meet tight deadlines; 
  • good at working in a team; 
  • able to relate effectively to people at different levels internally and externally; 
  • IT literate; 
  • able to grasp and assimilate new information quickly; 
  • able to delegate and yet maintain effective control; 
  • able to resolve a wide range of complex electoral problems; 
  • good at preparing written reports; 
  • able to negotiate effectively; 
  • able to express concepts and ideas clearly; 
  • adaptable and able to implement change; 
  • aware of the sensitive and confidential nature of the work.

Entry Requirements
It is desirable to have an Association of Electoral Administrators Certificate in Electoral Administration.  Election Managers would also need considerable elections and management experience including:

  • the compilation of the register of electors; 
  • the organisation of Parliamentary, European and local (including parish council) elections; 
  • the review of polling district boundaries and polling places.

Future Prospects & Opportunities
There may be opportunities to progress within other departments in the council, either into other democratic services or policy related roles, or with additional training to legal roles.

Further Information & Services
Association of Electoral Administrators www.aea-elections.co.uk
Chartered Institute of Legal Executives www.cilex.org.uk
Institute of Leadership and Management http://www.i-l-m.com
Local Government Association www.local.gov.uk 
The Law Society www.lawsociety.org.uk

You may find further information about this area of work through Careers Wales (www.careerswales.com/) or in your local library, careers office or school careers library.

Related Links