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Head of Psychological Services HMP Kilmarnock

Job Req ID:  61648
Posting Start Date: 

Kilmarnock, 0, United Kingdom, KA1 5AA

Contract Type:  Full Time
Job Description: 


At Serco, not only is the nature of the work we do important, everyone has an important role to play, from caring for vulnerable people to managing complex public services.  We are a team of 50,000 people responsible for delivering essential public services around the world in areas including defence, transport, justice, immigration, healthcare and citizen services. We are innovators, committed to redesigning and improving public services for the benefit of everyone.



Head of Psychological Services

HMP Kilmarnock

Salary £50,000 + Car + Company Benefits 



The Job Opportunity


The purpose of this role is for a Senior Forensic Psychologist to manage and provide strategic leadership of the Psychological Services Department in HMP Kilmarnock. This includes working as part of the Senior Management Team at the prison under the management of the Director. To provide management and delivery of Psychological Services ensuring that psychological work is compliant with the BPS and HCPC codes of conduct. Additionally, this post will be a key stakeholder in the Rehabilitative Culture strategy of the prison.


The job holder will largely excel in the area of individual prisoner risk assessment, intervention and safer custody (regarding both self-harm and violence reduction). The jobholder will have the opportunity and requirement to develop the Psychological Services Department at HMP Kilmarnock and will have responsibility providing direction and clinical decision making over OLR (Order of Lifelong Restriction) Risk Management Plans.


The job holder will be working with complex prisoners and prison staff and applying their experience and competence in the area of psychology to reduce the risk of harm and re-offending by undertaking complex risk assessment of prisoners, conducting research, providing consultancy and delivering training for staff and interventions (individual and group) for prisoners.


Daily Duties will Involve


The job holder will be required to carry out the following responsibilities, activities and duties:

  • Line management and overall responsibility for the Psychological Services and Interventions department
  • Responsible for relevant baselines with regard to Offending Behaviour Programmes; liaising with the Director and Controller to give reliable projections of completions and to meet these projections.
  • Ensure they maintain their professional Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) registration
  • Manage own Continued Professional Development (CPD) requirements and maintains professional standards
  • Lead and Co-ordinate the staff Care Team and provide post-incident care to prison staff; including psychological debriefing where appropriate.
  • Coordinate the delivery of staff support systems; including training and providing supervision to peer supporters.
  • Contribute to the management of critical incidents through the provision of psychological knowledge and advice, where suitable competence and training has been demonstrated
  • Contribute to other offender management processes (usually with more complex cases in work such as personality disorder assessments)
  • Lead on risk assessment and resulting risk management of complex, vulnerable or high risk prisoners. Will be competent to undertake the full range of risk assessments including the more complex risk assessments
  • Act as Programme Manager of all Offending Behaviour Interventions and ensure the provision of supervision, training, mentoring and support to interventions staff as required.
  • Act as a "professional witness" in RMT meetings, multi-agency meetings, and other formal settings where psychology input is required
  • Conducts relevant research including data gathering and analysis and presentation of results
  • Provides professional supervision of Forensic Psychologists in Training (FPiT) including Supervision to ensure that a FPiT is able to develop through the steps towards chartered and/or registered status
  • Provides consultancy support to colleagues in the Senior Management Team (SMT) in relation to areas such as psychology services, rehabilitative culture, being trauma informed, safer custody, staff training, research and evidence-based working and working with specific populations of prisoner
  • Input into the Safer Custody of the prison
  • Develop strategies such as intervention strategy and input into the Rehabilitative Culture strategy
  • Offer professional opinion to multi-functional teams conducting offender reports e.g. risk reports, parole reports on high risk or vulnerable prisoners
  • Conduct full case reviews on complex cases and offers authoritative advice on next steps relating to progression
  • Review cases and consider the recommendations from the Risk Management Team (RMT) in relation to Psychology work and assessments. You will also maintain a caseload of prisoners including OLR and lifer-sentenced prisoners
  • Strategically lead and develop the delivery of psychology services. To sit on the Senior Management Team (SMT) of the prison.


The duties/responsibilities listed above describe the post as it is at present and is not intended to be exhaustive. The Job holder is expected to accept reasonable alterations and additional tasks of a similar level that may be necessary in consultation with the Director and Head of Custodial Psychological Services.


What we are looking for in our candidates



  • The job holder will be Chartered with the BPS and Registered as a Practitioner Psychologist with the HCPC and must have significant experience post-qualification.
  • They will have had experience of managing people or leading teams.



  • Experience of writing Parole Reports
  • Experience of conducting a range of Psychological assessments including PCL-r, WAIS, SARA, HCR20, SARN, SRA, RSVP.
  • On the Register of Applied Psychology Practice Supervisors (RAPPS) with BPS.
  • Experience of supervising FPiTs
  • Experience of Offending Behaviour Programmes.
  • PCL-r certification


On occasion we receive significantly more applicants than expected for some vacancies and under such circumstances we reserve the right to bring forward the closing date of the advertisement. We therefore strongly advise you to apply for the role promptly to avoid disappointment should the closing date be brought forward. Serco is a Disability Confident Employer committed to employing and retaining people with disabilities.  Disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria for the job will be given the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities at an interview. For help with your application please contact 0345 010 4000.

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