View Vacancy - Estates and Security Officer - (45/22 CPT)

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer.  We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.
Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (Operations and Corporate Services)
Estates, Security

Main purpose of job:

The British High Commission to South Africa oversees the UK Government’s operations in South Africa across the following locations:

  • The British High Commission Pretoria (BHC)
  • The UK Visas & Immigration Office in Pretoria
  • The UK Department for International Trade in Johannesburg (DIT)
  • The British Consulate General Cape Town

Its Estates and Security Teams, based largely in Pretoria with some staff in the locations above, are responsible for delivering property and security services to support the work of the Mission.

The Estates and Security Officer will work under the supervision of an Estates Manager and Security Manager and will help manage security and estates work at British High Commission’s Offices and properties in the Cape Town area.  The Officer will also support security services for British Consulate Cape Town staff and Diplomatic families, and for UK Government visitors to Cape Town.

On the Estates side, the position will effectively act as a facilities manager for the Consulate office, a number of residential properties and the British High Commissioner to South Africa’s Official Residence in Cape Town. 

On the Security side, the position will take on a role to provide accurate security advice and support to diplomatic families, staff and official visitors, to review security risks and implement mitigating measures to these risks, and to oversee works and installations.  It also includes supporting and planning for high level visits and engagement with relevant security departments.

The role requires an individual who can work flexibly across multiple, and sometimes competing, priorities and who can demonstrate high standards of professionalism and deliver a very high quality customer service. The jobholder will need to be willing to work flexibly to help others, including responsiveness out of normal work hours and at anti-social times occasionally, contribute to Estates and Security work covering all British High Commission locations and staff throughout South Africa, take on different tasks where work pressures are heavy, cover leave absences and deal with emergencies.  This can involve calls and work dealing with customers and contractors in the evenings and weekends, for which a mobile phone is provided.

Whilst the role is based in Cape Town, the jobholder will be part of Estates and Security teams covering all of South Africa and will therefore need to work remotely to these other locations on a range of admin tasks.  The individual will likely need to travel to Pretoria occasionally (funded fully by the British High Commission).

The Estates and Security Officer plays a crucial role in:

Preparing our residential properties for occupation by our staff, which requires forward-planning, attention to detail and strong organisational and time-management skills

Dealing with on-going maintenance issues in offices and residential properties, requiring skills in administration, IT and multi-tasking numerous concurrent activities

Providing a professional service to our office staff and occupants of residential properties, for which a thorough understanding of customer service and good communications skills are essential

Managing the work of contractors which are engaged to deliver property and security services, maintenance and other security works, which requires planning and strong communication skills.


The role is ideally suited to an individual who:

Enjoys managing an operation and who takes pride in it running smoothly and without complaint.

Has strong administrative skills, is a good planner, has lots of initiative and wants to develop experience in estates-related work, finance, security work and running projects

Is a good communicator and people-person, who takes pride in good service and enjoys working in a busy team, yet can work proactively and with drive independently.

It is essential for the jobholder to have a valid driving licence as driving (in a company vehicle) to sites is required.

Experience of facilities management / property management or working in a security services delivery team would be a bonus though having the skills and qualities outlined above are the key attributes for the successful jobholder.

Roles and Responsibilities:

The below roles and responsibilities are general guidelines. The role is not limited to the detail below and the responsibilities are subject to change from time to time with prior consultation if circumstances, structures, work pressures or priorities alter, or if absences need covering.

  • Organising tasks required in managing a portfolio of residential accommodation including site visits, managing contractors, tracking progress and record keeping.
  • Organising work to deliver facilities management activates in offices and properties including planning / scheduling of work and ensuring staff have the correct information about works and property issues.
  • Raising requisitions orders and receipting funds on the British High Commission’s IT systems, dealing with financial issues and budgeting requirements and researching and assessing works quotes and costs.   These tasks include remote working for the British High Commission’s South Africa-wide Estates and Security teams by supporting budget and finance duties related to properties, offices and estates and security work at other British High Commission locations.
  • Conducting property assessments, against periodic schedules or in response to issues arising, ensuring British High Commission standards are met, compliance with Health & Safety requirements, and a high standard of customer service for staff and residential occupants.
  • Monitoring maintenance requests, ensuring that issues are addressed in line with agreed standards and deadlines, and communicating with staff and residential occupants.
  • Estate and Security administration duties, including internal record-keeping on properties, service suppliers, contractors, budget issues and asset registers.  Management of property information and inventories, including on the British High Commission’s IT systems.  These tasks include remote working for the British High Commission’s South Africa-wide Estates and Security teams by supporting admin duties related to properties, offices and estates and security work at other British High Commission locations.
  • Using experience / knowledge to observe and highlight any estate or security concerns, including accompanying contractors, related to property inspections and maintenance around generators, electrical, plumbing, security equipment and other similar issues.  Assess health and safey standards and security standards at properties and offices and report on these to managers.
  • Manage and directly supervise the team of contract guards at properties and offices to deliver consistently strong performance against a set of high standards and agreed operating procedures.  Oversee control of access arrangements, mail screening, customer service to visitors and response to incidents at the British High Commission offices and properties.
  • Provide advice on physical and procedural security matters, and about local security threats, risks and trends (covering different areas of Western Cape, and its facilities, eg, hotels, places to visit etc.), to staff, UK Government visitors to Cape Town and to managers based in Pretoria / BC premises.  Support visits to Cape Town by UK Government representatives, including VIPs, in particular security considerations for the logistical and public-facing elements of such visits.
  • Develop, maintain and utilise strong working relationships with relevant South African Police Service, local Provincial and Municipal government and private security contacts to inform and support the delivery of British High Commission security services and policies.
  • Liaise with landlords and building managers to ensure security, fire safety, and health and safety standards are met, including regular testing fire, incident and bomb procedures.  Reporting on these to managers based in Pretoria.
  • Provide a strong contribution, in addition to the above day-to-day tasks to the morale and team spirit of the local Corporate Services team, and other teams, in the British Consulate in Cape Town, especially related to learning and development, teamwork, collaboration and support to others, respect to colleagues, and diversity and inclusion.
  • Deliver professionally other tasks and new work as delegated by managers on an ad hoc basis, often outside the above areas, in order to support the work of the British High Commission in South Africa.

Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

Oversee works funded by the British High Commission estates and security budgets, including researching quotes, assessing these and ensuring costs offer good value for money, financial processes are managed effectively on the IT system and budgetary information is recorded, reported and maintained accurately.

  • Strong computer literacy
  • Fluency in both written and verbal English 
  • Multi-tasking, planning, communication with customers and time management skills
  • Valid Driver’s licence, the jobholder must be able to drive.
  • Experience in responding to issues of an urgent nature and knowing how to prioritise emergencies
  • Administration experience, including dealing with external contractors and being able to deliver proactively on their own initiative.
  • Experience in property management / facilities management / working in the security sector
  • Budgetary experience
  • Full training is provided though to the successful candidate if they do not have this experience.
Communicating and Influencing, Delivering at Pace, Developing Self and Others, Making Effective Decisions, Managing a Quality Service
23 November 2022
Administrative Officer (AO)
36.5 hours
South Africa
Cape Town
British Consulate General
R 242,848.44 per annum
1 January 2023

Learning and development opportunities (and any specific training courses to be completed):

Full training is provided to the successful applicant for all job-related skills.  The British High Commission also offers a huge range of learning and development opportunities, including financial support through study grants.

Working patterns:  

Flexible hours are possible at times, especially to compensate for evenings or weekends worked.  However, site visits and engagement with contractors in weekly daytime working hours limit the opportunity for working from home, or other remote working, or fully flexible work patterns.

Any other information (or specific local Post requirements):

The role requires the officer to take calls in the evenings and weekends to respond to estate maintenance and security issues.  A mobile phone is provided and an allowance over and above salary is paid for this.

During visits to Cape Town of UK Government staff, including VIPs, and when events are staged, evening / weekend working will occasionally be required.

The jobholder must be able to drive given site visits etc.  A company vehicle is used for such journeys.

Occasional travel to Pretoria to meet managers, learn skills and build networks with colleagues.

  • Please complete the application form in full as the information provided is used during screening.
  • Please check your application carefully before you submit, as no changes can be made once submitted.
  • The British High Commission will never request any payment or fees to apply for a position.
  • Employees recruited locally by the British High Commission in Pretoria are subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local employment law in South Africa.
  • All candidates must be legally able to work and reside in the country of the vacancy with the correct visa/work permit status or demonstrate eligibility to obtain the relevant permit. 
  • The responsibility lies on the successful candidate to:
  • Obtain the relevant permit
  • Pay fees for the permit
  • Make arrangements to relocate
  • Meet the costs for relocation 
  • The British High Commission do not sponsor visas/work permits except where it may be local practice to do so. 
  • Employees who are not liable to pay local income tax on their Mission salary may have their salaries reduced by the equivalent local income tax amount.
  • Information about the Civil Service Success Profiles can be found on this link: Please note:  AA=A1, AO=A2, EO=B3, HEO=C4, SEO=C5
  • Reference checking and security clearances will be conducted on successful candidates.
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This opportunity is closed to applications.