6 X Executive Officer

Higher Education Authority
€29,316 - €49,959 per year

About the Higher Education Authority
The mission of the Higher Education Authority (HEA) is to create a higher education system that
maximises opportunities and ensures a high-quality experience for students. The HEA is the
statutory funding body for the universities, institutes of technology and several designated higher
education institutions and advises the Minister for Education and Skills on the development of Irish
higher education.

Arising from the National Strategy for Higher Education, the HEA is now playing a key role in leading
the higher education system in the achievement of higher levels of performance. The HEA advises
the Minister for Education and Skills on the objectives to be set for the higher education system and
performance indicators to be applied. It is the HEA’s responsibility to ensure that institutional
objectives are aligned with national objectives, that appropriate metrics are in place to measure
performance and that funding allocations reflect performance. We are the lead agency in the
creation of a co-ordinated system of higher education institutions with clear and diverse roles
appropriate to their strengths and national needs.

The HEA performs an advocacy role for higher education to students, Government, employers and
the general public and we input into the national policy agenda through the provision of high quality,
research and evidence based policy advice to the Department of Education and Skills and other
agencies and Departments with significant interaction with the higher education system.

The HEA recently published a new Strategic Plan for the period 2018-22
The Department of Education and Skills is proposing to put in place new legislation to more fully
reflect the HEA’s current central role and responsibilities in relation to higher education, in order to
support higher education institutions to be the best in Europe.

About the Irish Research Council (IRC)
Established in mid-2012 under the Government’s Public Sector Reform Plan, the Irish Research
Council, a merger of two former councils1 is an associated agency of the Department of Education
and Skills (DES) and operates under the aegis of the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

The Council supports excellent research and enhances the provision of highly skilled human capital
by providing competitive funding across all disciplines for Masters and PhD scholarships and for
Postdoctoral Research Fellowships. The Council also funds Principal Investigator-led research with
a social, cultural and societal significance and participates in a range of EU-funded projects. In
delivering on its mission to ‘support excellent research and recognise creative individuals with
innovative ideas, thus enabling a vibrant research community which enriches Irish research, the
economy and society’, the Council also partners on several initiatives with enterprise, employers,
government departments and civic society.

The Council is currently in the process of developing a new Strategic Plan.

Context for the positions
The HEA wishes to fill a number of posts both at permanent and fixed term contract level. In addition,
the HEA wishes to establish a panel which will be used to fill positions arising from new programmes
and projects which the HEA or IRC have been requested to manage. These positions may be filled
on a permanent basis, longer term fixed term contract (2+ years) or for shorter periods to assist with
specific projects (3-6 months).

A panel last for a 12-month period from the date of interviews will be established and will be used
to fill any subsequent permanent, longer or short term fixed term contracts.
Arising from the expansion of the HEA’s work in managing the capital programme for HEIs the HEA
will be creating a new position for graduates of Architecture, Quantity Surveying, Civil or
Construction Engineering or similar programmes. This position will be filled on a 3-year fixed term

Job Description
Other than the specialist position in Capital Programmes, the location of the other posts has yet to
be finalized although it is anticipated that there will be posts in the following sections – Access Policy,
System Funding and Performance, Skills and Engagement, International Programmes and the Irish
Research Council.

The general duties of Executive Officer include;

• Assist with implementation of programmes and funding allocations to higher education
• Assist with the development of evidence-based analysis and in the development of policy papers
and/or reports Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS); Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology (IRCSET)
• Preparation of material for reply – Parliamentary Questions, Freedom of Information Requests
• Representation of the HEA/IRC at meetings, conferences etc.
• Assist with the organisation of meetings, conferences and other events
• Management of records and files in their section
• Other duties appropriate to the grade

• Higher Education Qualification, preferably at NQF level 8 or higher (Architecture, Quantity
Surveying, Civil or Construction Engineering or similar programme for the Capital Programmes
• Excellent organisational and project management skills
• Excellent communication skills (verbal and written)
• Good IT skills, including MS Excel, MS Word, MS Outlook and MS PowerPoint
• Ability to work in an effective manner with other members of a team
• Excellent time management skills
• Ability to complete tasks to a very high standard
• Knowledge and interest in Higher Education policy and development
• Knowledge and experience of public sector administration
• Scileanna láidre scríofa agus labhartha sa Ghaeilge
• European language skills

Further information on the work of the Higher Education Authority and the Irish Research Council is
available at and

Closing date for applications 5.30pm Friday 1st February 2019 via email to, for the
attention of Mr. Padraic Mellett, HEA, Head of Corporate Affairs, Higher Education Authority.
Alternatively applications can be sent by post to Mr. Padraic Mellett, HEA, Head of Corporate
Affairs, Higher Education Authority, 3 Shelbourne Buildings, Shelbourne Road, Dublin D04 C2Y6.
Informal queries relating to this position should be submitted to
The HEA is an equal opportunities employer.

Principal Conditions of Service
Part 1 (Conditions which particularly apply to this position)
1. Pay: The salary scale for this position is as follows:
PPC - €29,316, €31,331, €32,461, €34,365, €36,071, €37,720, €39,364, €40,974, €42,599, €44,182
€45,811, €46,891, €48,427 (LS1), €49,959 (LS2)

Increments may be awarded subject to satisfactory service and to changes in the terms and
conditions relating to salary increments in the Civil/Public Service generally.
The rate of remuneration may be adjusted from time to time in line with Government pay policy.
Salary: The appointment will be made on the salary scale at a point in line with current
Government Pay Policy. New Entrants to the Civil or Public Sector, as defined in Circular 18/2010,
will commence on the first point of the salary scale. Different pay and conditions may apply if,
immediately prior to appointment, the appointee is a serving civil or public servant.

2. Annual Leave: Annual Leave will be 23 working days, rising to 24 days after 5 years’ service
and 25 days after 10 years’ service. This leave is exclusive of public holidays.

3. Hours of Attendance: Working hours will be in accordance with the standard arrangements
for HEA and will equate to no less than a 37 hours (net of rest breaks) per week.
No additional payment will be made for extra attendance as the rate of remuneration payable
covers any exceptional extra attendance liability that may arise from time to time.

4. Location: This position is currently based at 3 Shelbourne Buildings, Shelbourne Road,
Dublin 4. This is 5 minutes’ walk from Lansdowne Dart Station and is serviced by a number
of bus routes including 4,7, and 18.

Part II (Other conditions which apply generally to appointees to this position)

1. Tenure: Three positions will be appointed on a permanent basis in the HEA in a number of
different sections. Two positions will be appointed on a fixed-term basis. Other positions may
be filled on permanent, long-term or short-term fixed contract basis.
The appointee must serve a probationary period, which normally will last for 12 months. Should
the appointee’s services be satisfactory as regards health, conduct and efficiency generally
during the probationary period, the appointee, on completion of the period will be finally
appointed. Should the appointee’s services be unsatisfactory, the appointment may be
terminated at any time during the period.

2. Duties: The appointee will be expected to perform all acts, duties and obligations as
appropriate to this position (which may be revised from time to time).

3. Outside Employment: The position is whole-time and the appointee must avoid involvement
in outside employment/business interests in conflict or in potential conflict with the business of
HEA. Clarification must be sought from management where any doubt arises.
PPC (Personal Pension Contribution) Scale (for officers who are existing civil or public servants
appointed on or after 6 April 1995 or who are new entrants to the civil or public service and who are
making a compulsory personal pension contribution).
Different pay and conditions may apply if, prior to appointment, the appointee is an existing civil or
public servant appointed prior to 6th April 1995.

4. Sick Leave: Sick leave with full pay may be allowed at the discretion of the Higher Education
Authority in accordance with established procedures and conditions for the public service

5. Retirement and Superannuation: The appointee will be offered public service pension terms
and retirement age conditions in accordance with pension arrangements in the HEA depending
on the status of the successful appointee:

a) In general, an individual who has no prior pensionable Public Service history in the 26 weeks
prior to appointment will be a member of the Single Public Service Pension Scheme (Single
Scheme) which commenced from 1 January 2013 (Section 10 of the Public Service Pensions
(Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012 refers);

b) An individual who is on secondment will remain a member of the parent organisation’s pension
scheme and the pensionable remuneration will be based on his/her substantive grade i.e. the
grade at which the individual is employed in his/her parent organisation;

c) An individual who was a member of a “pre-existing public service pension scheme” as
construed by the Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012 and
who does not qualify for membership of the Single Scheme will be a member of the HEA’s
Staff Superannuation Scheme and Associated Spouses and Children’s Scheme;

d) At the time of being offered an appointment, the HEA in consultation with the Department of
Education & Skills and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform if necessary, will, in
the light of the appointee’s previous Public Service (and/or other) employment history,
determine the appropriate pension terms and conditions to apply for the duration of the
appointment. Appointees will be required to disclose their full public service history. Details of
the appropriate superannuation provisions will be provided upon determination of appointee’s

e) In accordance with the provisions of the Superannuation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2004
staff may not retire before their 65th birthday unless it is on grounds of ill-health. Different
retirement arrangements apply to staff employed in the public service prior to the
aforementioned 2004 Act;

f) The following points should be noted:
• Pension Accrual: A 40-year limit on total service that can be counted towards pension where
a person has been a member of more than one existing public service pension scheme will
apply. This 40-year limit, which is provided for in the Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme
and other Provisions) Act 2012 came into effect on 28 July 2012. This may have implications
for any appointee who has acquired pension rights in a previous public service employment.
• Pension Abatement: The Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act
2012 extended pension abatement so that a retiree’s public service pension is liable to
abatement on re-entering public service employment, even where the new employment is in a
different area of the public service. However, if the appointee was previously employed in the
Civil Service and awarded a pension under voluntary early retirement arrangements (other
than the Incentivised Scheme of Early Retirement (ISER) or the Health Service Executive
VER/VRS which, as outlined below, render a person ineligible for the competition) the
entitlement to payment of that pension will cease with effect from the date of reappointment.
Special arrangements will, however, be made for the reckoning of previous service given by
the appointee for the purpose of any future superannuation award for which the appointee may
be eligible.

• Department of Education and Skills Early Retirement Scheme for Teachers Circular
102/2007: The Department of Education and Skills introduced an Early Retirement Scheme
for Teachers. It is a condition of the Early Retirement Scheme that with the exception of the
situations set out in paragraphs 10.2 and 10.3 of the relevant circular, and with those
exceptions only, if a teacher accepts early retirement under Strands 1, 2 or 3 of this scheme
and is subsequently employed in any capacity in any area of the public sector, payment of
pension to that person under the scheme will immediately cease. Pension payments will,
however, be resumed on the cesser of such employment or on the person’s 60th birthday,
whichever is the later, but on resumption, the pension will be based on the person’s actual
reckonable service as a teacher (i.e. the added years previously granted will not be taken into
account in the calculation of the pension payment).

• Ill-Health Retirement: Please note that where an individual has retired from a Civil/Public
Service body on the grounds of ill-health his/her pension from that employment may be subject
to review in accordance with the rules of ill-health retirement within the pension scheme of that

6. Pension Related Deduction: This appointment is subject to the pension-related deduction in
accordance with the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act 2009. For further
information in relation to public service superannuation issues please see the following

7. Eligibility to compete: Candidates should note that eligibility to compete is open to citizens
of the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA consists of the Member States of the
European Union along with Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

8. Incentivised Scheme for Early Retirement (ISER): It is a condition of the Incentivised
Scheme for Early Retirement (ISER) as set out in Department of Finance Circular 12/09 that
retirees, under that Scheme, are debarred from applying for another position in the same
employment or the same sector. Therefore, such retirees may not apply for this position.
9. Department of Health and Children Circular (7/2010): The Department of Health Circular
7/2010 dated 1 November 2010 introduced a Targeted Voluntary Early Retirement (VER)
Scheme and Voluntary Redundancy Schemes (VRS). It is a condition of the VER scheme that
persons availing of the scheme will not be eligible for re-employment in the public health sector
or in the wider public service or in a body wholly or mainly funded from public moneys. The
same prohibition on re-employment applies under the VRS, except that the prohibition is for a
period of 7 years, after which time any re-employment will require the approval of the Minister
for Public Expenditure and Reform. People who availed of either of these schemes are not
eligible to compete in this competition.

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