Senior Personal Assistant to the Bishop of Chichester

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This post provides an opportunity to work in a small team (which includes the Bishop’s Senior Chaplain, the Bishop’s Administrator and the Palace Finance Officer) to support the Bishop of Chichester’s ministry. In the close-knit office team, roles over lap and co-operation is required between all staff members. All staff play their part in offering hospitality to visitors and responding to queries. The Bishop’s Senior PA and the Bishop’s Administrator in particular, will support one another in their respective tasks. Nonetheless, within the team each person has a distinct role and takes a specific lead.

  • To take the lead in the day to day work of the office.
  • To manage the Bishop’s appointments and diary and to make practical arrangements relating to his ministry.
  • To understand the Bishop’s priorities and expectations and to anticipate and suggest information he may need.
  • To oversee filing and records; and to prepare material for archiving.
  • To develop and maintain good working relationships with the Bishop’s senior staff as well as those who work in the Diocesan Office at Church House Hove, the Cathedral Office, the Archdeacons’ and Suffragan Bishops’ offices and the Registry.

Lead Duties

  • To manage and maintain the Bishop’s electronic diary, and to ensure the accuracy of the information recorded in it and shared across the Bishop’s office team and the Bishop.
  • To provide a day file, briefing notes and, where appropriate, verbal briefings for the Bishop.
  • To arrange a weekly meeting with the Bishop and the office staff to better understand his priorities and expectations, and to anticipate his requirements for forthcoming events.
  • To ensure that the Bishop has all necessary paperwork and information in advance of meetings and engagements, liaising with other members of the Bishop’s office staff, the Bishop’s Senior Staff, Diocesan staff and external people and organisations as necessary.
  • To be well informed in the case of telephone or email inquiries, taking the initiative to re-direct enquiries or to obtain further information, and acting appropriately on any administrative matters that arise.
  • To ensure prompt handling of the Bishop’s correspondence, taking the initiative to re-direct enquiries, to obtain further information or to refer more complex matters to the Bishop’s Senior Chaplain.

Other Duties

  • With the support of the Administrator, to take the initiative to draft responses to correspondence (whether in their own name or the Bishop’s name) and liaising with the Bishop’s Senior Chaplain and the Bishop to draft responses to more complex matters.
  • To prepare draft guest lists and invitations and to co-ordinate events, including overseeing the Administrator in making administrative and catering arrangements for ordinations, summer marquee events and other regular or one-off events.
  • With the Administrator, to liaise with the Cathedral and the Registry concerning licensings, ordinations, large Diocesan services (such as the Chrism Eucharist) and other events.
  • To work with the Senior Chaplain and the Administrator to maintain an effective and comprehensive filing system in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
  • To deputise for the Bishop’s Senior Chaplain in administrative matters in their absence, including taking minutes at Archdeacons’ and Bishop’s Staff meetings.

Please see job description for full main responsibilities


Personal Effectiveness

  • Use a practical approach to tasks
  • Be able to prioritise effectively
  • Have confidence to challenge the Bishop and the Bishop’s Chaplain when appropriate
  • Work well in a small team
  • Shares the faith, worship and mission of the Church of England
  • Has an aptitude for understanding the systems, structures and terminology of the Church of England.


  • Establish and maintain excellent working relationships with colleagues and other contacts
  • Have a polite, helpful manner
  • Communicate effectively with people at all levels, both inside and outside the organisation
  • Demonstrate excellent presentation, layout and accuracy in text production


  • Manage work flow flexibly to prioritise tasks in order to meet deadlines
  • Follow office and related procedures
  • Have an aptitude for developing and reviewing office systems in response to changing demands and the availability of new technology


  • Demonstrate an aptitude for supervising and training staff effectively.
  • Competent in managing own workload and effectively delegating to and supporting others with their workloads
  • Be committed to own personal development and encouraging others in their development
  • Use good judgement in knowing when to delegate


  • Educated to university degree level
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Word, and Outlook, and have a willingness to learn Excel, Access, and Explorer


  • Hold a full driving licence and have a willingness occasionally to drive to meetings off-site.
  • Capable of promoting the Christian faith, supportive of the work of the Church and the ability to share in the ethos of the Bishop’s office and household.

Please see job description for full ideal requirements list

As we are a member of the Armed Forces Covenant, we welcome all applications from those you have served in our Armed Forces and their families

We are committed to building a culturally diverse workforce. As part of this commitment, we welcome applications from people, regardless of their background. As a Disability Confident committed employer, it is important to note that there may be occasions where it is not practical or appropriate to interview all disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria* due to high volume. We limit the amount of interviews conducted to five applicants per open post we advertise.

*Where applicable depending on post requirements.