Investigator and Communications Officer – OmbudsPEI

Investigator and Communications Officer – OmbudsPEI

October 13, 2022

OmbudsPEI is currently seeking to hire an Investigator and Communications Officer in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. Apply online only no later than Monday, November 7th, 2022 at 4:30p.m. ADT.

Job Description: Investigator and Communications Officer (the “Investigator”)

Reports to: Deputy Ombudsperson

Location: Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

Compensation and Benefits:

  • Level 20 ($67,509 to $84,396 per annum) ($34.62 to $43.28 per hour)
  • Pension
  • Health and Dental Benefits
  • Life Insurance

Purpose

As Investigator and Communications Officer with the Offices of the Ombudsperson and Public Disclosure Commissioner (OmbudsPEI) your role will be to investigate complaints about government maladministration, whistleblower disclosure and complaints of reprisals. Working as part of a small team, you’ll be accountable for conducting thorough investigations and getting to the heart of the matter. Building on your experience, you will listen carefully to both sides, ask the right questions and use sound judgement – as well as drawing on the expertise and knowledge of those around you. We are looking for a strong team player who thrives on intellectual challenges and who is able to conduct investigations and produce reports which are impartial, thorough and compelling.

You’ll need to build trust, manage expectations and explain what you think, and why – in person, in writing and over the phone. You’ll thrive in an environment where no two days are the same.

To be considered for this role, you’ll need to demonstrate: superior communication skills; the ability to clearly articulate concepts and thoughts, both orally and in writing; strong research skills and capability; effective listening, interpersonal, analytical, critical reasoning, problem-solving and judgement skills; a strong sense of what is right and fair and the ability to be tenacious and resilient in the face of challenge; a working knowledge of government; knowledge of the work of the Office; professionalism and integrity; the ability to multitask, set priorities and work in a complex office environment; advanced personal organization and attention to detail; innovation and creativity; problem-solving to achieve fairness and consensus; a high level of personal motivation and commitment to supporting, maintaining and improving the efficiency of the office and to meeting targeted deadlines

With fairness at the heart of everything we do, we embrace difference and treat everyone as equals. We are committed to being a great place to work – attracting and developing people from a wide range of backgrounds. We want everyone to perform at their best and provide a supportive environment to ensure the highest quality of work.

About the Offices and Our Team

The Offices of the Ombudsperson and Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner are independent offices of the Legislative Assembly. Under the authority of the Ombudsperson Act and the Public Interest Disclosure and Whistleblower Protection Act (the Acts), the Ombudsperson/Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner investigates complaints of unfairness and disclosures of wrongdoing and reprisals. The offices of the Ombudsperson/Commissioner operate as one office (the office) fulfilling the mandates of each role under the Acts. This work is different from other positions within the public service as the nature of the work is that of an oversight body on the public sector.

All staff must be able to respond to scrutiny while maintaining confidentiality and the integrity of the office. They also require a superior appreciation of the role and work performed by a classical or executive model of the Ombudsperson’s Office.

Responsibilities

Receive Complaints and Attempt Early/Informal Resolution

  • Receives complaints and inquiries by mail, email, telephone or in person and obtains all relevant information by asking clarifying questions, requesting documentation where appropriate and conducting appropriate follow-up where necessary
  • Uses a variety of communication skills to obtain relevant information from complainants via telephone or in person. This includes communicating with people who may be distressed or emotionally distraught or who face other challenges
  • Assesses complaints to determine whether they fall within the Ombudsperson’s mandate and clearly and effectively communicates the rationale for this assessment verbally and in writing where required
  • Determines appropriate referrals for complaints which are outside the Ombudsperson’s mandate or for which there are appropriate alternative avenues of recourse and communicate this information to complainants
  • Summarizes and documents complaints using the office’s case management system
  • Triages complaints, prioritizes and identifies next steps to attempt resolution
  • Flags exceptionally serious, sensitive or systemic complaints to management’s attention
  • Reviews and analyzes complaints and identifies and frames issues for follow-up
  • Conducts research and makes inquiries in order to identify opportunities for potential resolution or to make appropriate recommendations on the disposition of complaints
  • Identifies applicable legislation, regulations, policies or procedures and applies relevant sections to the issues identified in order to attempt resolution or to make appropriate recommendations on the disposition of complaints
  • Communicates with complainants and government officials to attempt resolution of complaints, using a variety of conflict resolution strategies

Investigation and Evidence Gathering

  • Drafts investigation plans for consultation and early identification of issues by assessing the scope and determining the methodology and techniques required to carry out a thorough and effective investigation
  • Conducts thorough and objective investigations, involving both individual and systemic issues with a focus on rigorous fact-finding, fairness, timelines and attention to details
  • Coordinates list of people to be interviewed, communicate with complainants, public sector staff and witnesses and conducts on site interviews and inspections to gather evidence
  • Plans and conducts thorough interviews using a variety of interview techniques and record statements using electronic recording equipment
  • Identifies, obtains, reviews and analyzes all documentation relevant to the investigation
  • Identifies potential investigative barriers and recommends effective solutions

Disposition/Resolution of Complaints

  • Recommends appropriate disposition of complaints according to an evidence-based analysis of the issues
  • Prepares correspondence and other documentation, which clearly and cogently communicates the substance of the complaint, the issues that were dealt with by the office and the rationale for the assessment and disposition of the complaint. Correspondence and other communications must be easy to understand and reflect the appropriate tone and message, which are consistent with the organizational direction of the office
  • Ensures that the disposition of complaints and the rationale for such is clearly and appropriately recorded in the office’s case management system

Other

  • Prepares cases summaries for use in the Ombudsperson’s Annual Report or for other purposes
  • Analyses trends and patterns in complaints in order to identify potential systemic issues
  • Summarizes complaint information and/or the results of the trends analyses for the purpose of briefing management and/or to assist the communications team in responding to media and other inquiries
  • Shares information with colleagues on relevant complaint issues and trends including through informal briefings at team meetings
  • Provides assistance, as requested by management, during the conduct of assessments and investigations, including conducting research and reviewing documentation
  • Researches material for and writes/edits a variety of communications materials including reports, press releases, backgrounders, videos, speeches, opening remarks, outreach materials and e-newsletters
  • Participates in outreach activities to promote awareness of the office and its operations
  • Provides support and assistance to the Ombudsperson and other members of staff who are delivering speeches or other presentations.

Work Environment

  • The office offers a highly charged, demanding, energetic and challenging workplace with opportunities to work on interesting cases directly affecting Islanders. We emphasize a hard-working productive environment that encourages professional development and teamwork.
  • The Investigator may be called upon to work evenings and weekend. Travel may be required on an occasional/infrequent basis. Site visits (indoor/outdoor) in various terrain and environments (such as correctional facilities).
  • Regular computer work that could place strain on the eyes, hand, arm and neck, muscles/tendons.
  • The Investigator must ensure that the confidentiality obligations of the Office, as set out in the Acts, are adhered to and must routinely handle confidential information using appropriate safeguards and discretion.
  • The Investigator is expected to work collaboratively with their team members and colleagues on the investigations team and elsewhere in the office.
  • You are expected to work autonomously and exercise initiative, using appropriate judgment to determine when consultation with management is appropriate. You are expected to work effectively and efficiently with minimal supervision, taking the initiative to find solutions to any problems which occur and to identify creative ways to improve the quality of service provided.
  • The Investigator occupies a busy and demanding position, which requires regular multi-tasking and the ability to deal professionally and competently with a high volume of work. You must be capable of dealing with competing demands and priorities and be highly organized in your work. A maximum amount of flexibility is required in order to ensure that complaints are dealt with in a timely and responsive fashion.
  • Members of the public and government officials rely on you, as a delegate of the Ombudsperson, to provide timely and accurate information at all times. You are expected to act with a high degree of integrity and professionalism at all times and in all of your dealings. Failure to present a professional, courteous and competent image or to provide accurate and timely information or results has the potential to have adverse impacts for individuals and on the Office, it’s credibility and reputation and ultimately its operations.
  • The type of work performed by the Investigator is not conducive to the rigid application of policies and procedures. You are expected to take a principled approach to decision making, using sound judgment and common sense while ensuring that the organizational principles of the office are respected, such as integrity, professionalism, timeliness, thoroughness, accuracy and relevant and meaningful communication. Advice, guidance and support is available from colleagues and you are expected to determine when consultation is appropriate. Decisions on individual cases are made pursuant to an evidence-based analysis of clearly identified issues and are subject to review by managers.

Qualifications

  • Post-secondary degree or diploma in a field related to one or more of the following: law, social science, political science, psychology, journalism or public administration, or an acceptable combination of education and experience.
  • Experience in conflict resolution, developing/drafting investigative plans, gathering evidence, interviewing and report writing is required. Investigative reports should address individual and systemic issues and include identifying and applying relevant legislation.
  • Knowledge of mediation theory and conflict management practice
  • Proficient with using office management software and case management information systems.
  • Experience providing intake, complaint handling and resolution services along with referral information in a regulatory oversight setting (considered an asset).
  • Satisfactory criminal record background and vulnerable person sector check.

How to Apply

Apply online only at: https://hrportal.catsone.com/careers/101546-OmbudsPEI/jobs/15770657-Investigator-and-Communications-Officer

Deadline: Monday, November 7th, 2022 at 4:30p.m. ADT

The Offices of the Ombudsperson and Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner is fully committed to creating an inclusive environment and building a team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, religion, ethnicity, gender, disability, citizenship status, marital status, or sexual orientation.

We thank all applicants for their interest, however only those under consideration for the role will be contacted. The Offices of the Ombudsperson and Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner strives to provide a barrier-free process and make every effort to accommodate individual applicant needs. Accommodations are available upon request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process. A request for accommodations will not affect an individual’s candidacy. Please contact our recruiting partner recruitment@carvogroup.com if you require an accommodation.

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