Any SMF office (Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle).


15 Apr


Head of Partnerships & Income Development

Place of work: Any SMF office (Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle). We operate a hybrid model of work, with flexible days in the office depending on business need and your preferences. Some travel, to other SMF offices and other locations, will occasionally be expected.

Contract and hours: We are looking for the right candidate and while we envisage this being a full-time role (37.5 hours per week) we are very open to part-time, compressed hours or other flexible working arrangements.

Permanent contract. Occasional evening or weekend work may be required, for which time off in lieu will be given.

Benefits: 25 days holiday per year pro rata, plus bank holidays. 5% Employer contribution to pension following successful probation period, in line with auto-enrolment pension requirements.

Reports to: Chief Executive  

Management responsibility: Currently managing a team of 9 with 3 direct reports

Salary Band: £56,000 - £59,000 plus £2,200 London weighting if applicable  

Closing Date: 09:00am on Monday 15th April 2024.  

About the Social Mobility Foundation  

The Social Mobility Foundation (SMF) is a national charity that aims to make a practical difference in social mobility. We want young people from all backgrounds to have fair access to high quality education, career opportunities and progression.

Our vision is a society where talent from all backgrounds is nurtured, harnessed and rewarded. We unlock potential, broaden horizons and create opportunities with and for ambitious young people who face structural barriers in education and work because of their socioeconomic background (where they grew up, went to school or the occupation of their parents or guardians).  

We do this by:  

  • Directly supporting young people; we nurture the knowledge, confidence and networks of high-achieving young people through our programmes.  
  • Influencing employers; we influence employers to ensure people with potential can get in and get on in professional life.  
  • Advocating for social mobility; we campaign on structural social mobility issues and amplify the voices of young people from lower socioeconomic backgrounds.  


About the role

The SMF has just agreed a new three-year strategy with bold ambitions to develop our programmes to have more impact on more young people, and to increase our influence on the systemic barriers to social mobility. As our Head of Partnerships & Income Development you will own the development and delivery of our income generation strategy so that we can build the partnerships and secure the resources we need to meet these ambitions.  

You will primarily be accountable for overseeing and developing our impressive portfolio of corporate funding relationships and partnerships, through which we deliver on our strategic priorities and generate most of our income – currently £3m annually. You will also lead the development of our other income streams including trusts and foundations, events, earned income, and pro bono partnerships.

As a valued member of the senior management team, you will work closely with the board, Chief Executive and senior leadership colleagues to shape and deliver our strategy and business plan and develop our charity and our people.

Commercially minded and experienced at building and stewarding strong, mutually beneficial partnerships, the successful candidate will be an inspiring leader who can empower their team to be creative, proactive and tenacious and leverage our networks of support. You will be passionate about providing access and opportunity for young people across the UK, capable of working at the very highest level, and excited by the personal professional growth this role and the organisation could offer you.

Person Specification

Essential skills and experience

  • Experience in securing strategic funding partnerships, including scoping opportunities and prospects, setting targets and building a pipeline, shaping compelling offers and proposals, pitching for new business, and building long term relationships
  • Experience in managing a significant funding portfolio, stewarding and developing corporate partnerships and other funding relationships, ensuring effective account management and maximising opportunities for growth
  • Confident in representing the SMF externally and engaging with different stakeholders
  • Excellent interpersonal, negotiating and influencing skills
  • Excellent communication skills, able to write and present compelling cases for support and create fundraising and marketing assets
  • Effective planning and organisational skills with experience of managing and monitoring multiple projects  
  • Excellent numeracy skills, able to manage budgets, set and monitor team and individual income targets and KPIs, and present data clearly and concisely
  • Able to motivate, develop and inspire a team of high performing staff with a willingness to build capability and ensure that high standards of performance and behaviours are maintained
  • Thinks and works collaboratively across the organisation, including as a key member of the senior management team
  • Committed to the aims of the Social Mobility Foundation

Desirable skills and experience

  • Experience of raising income from trusts and foundations, and/or major donors and individuals
  • Experience of developing new products and services and shaping a commercial offer
  • Understanding of employee volunteering programmes and volunteer recruitment
  • Experience of working with young people
  • Able to harness Salesforce CRM as a tool for partnership and income development


Main responsibilities

  • Responsible for creating and implementing a robust income generation strategy to support and enable the achievement of the SMF's strategic ambitions, setting targets, monitoring and reporting on income performance and supporting accurate forecasts and projections
  • Work collaboratively with SMT colleagues and across the charity to identify funding and partnership needs and opportunities, shape compelling cases for support and align our income generation strategy and offer to funders with our mission, targets and priorities  
  • Responsible for overseeing and stewarding SMF’s portfolio of corporate partnerships, setting and reporting on income targets, maximising existing partnerships and taking lead responsibility for stewardship of flagship relationships
  • Responsible for developing a robust new business pipeline, setting targets, developing our offer and securing new partnerships (corporates, trusts and foundations and events
  • Responsible for developing the potential of other income streams including individual giving and philanthropy
  • Lead a culture of excellent relationship management across the SMF and ensure the right resources, systems and skills are in place across the charity and for all staff that interact or hold relationships with partners
  • Work collaboratively with the Head of Advocacy and Campaigns to grow earned income through the Social Mobility Employer Index and develop related products and services for employers
  • Oversee the development of and delivery of our volunteering offer including our award-winning student mentoring service, ensuringwe build mutually beneficial volunteering partnerships
  • Represent the SMF externally with funders, partners and other stakeholders, seeking opportunities to increase the organisation’s network and build our influence and reputation as an effective charity partner  
  • Manage, motivate and develop the team, setting team and individual goals and evaluating performance, coaching and motivating staff and supporting professional development and staff wellbeing
  • Lead across the organisation, fostering a collaborative and high-performance culture and modelling leadership behaviours
  • Work with the CEO and fellow members of the SMT to shape the SMF’s strategic priorities, set the annual business plan and key projects, and monitor delivery and performance

How to Apply

Interested candidates should apply to our application portal Breathe by submitting the following information by 09:00am, on Monday 15th April 2024.  

  • A cover letter outlining your suitability for the post along with specific examples from past experience and skills. Please ensure a contact number is included.  
  • A short statement answering the question: ‘Tell us about a significant funding partnership which you were instrumental in securing or growing. How did you identify the opportunity, what skills did you use to secure it, and what were the outcomes and benefits?’ (800 words maximum)  

Please note that generic applications, AI generated applications, and CV’s will not be considered. If you have any questions about the role, please contact Sarah Atkinson at


Job Description

(11.98 MB)

(11.98 MB)

(11.98 MB)

(11.98 MB)

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