Fixed Term Parental Leave Cover until Feb 2025

Help shape the future of our organisation by leading our safety and wellbeing strategy

Go beyond compliance, embedding safety and wellbeing into our culture

Be part of a tight-knit, supportive team in a flexible environment

About us

With around 200 staff, the Manawatū District Council is big enough to provide career growth and progression opportunities, but small enough that you can get to know everyone in the team. We're committed to delivering great services and making a real difference for our community.

Our organisation has worked hard on our safety and wellbeing programmes over recent years, scoring ‘outstanding' for 7 of the 10 SafePlus categories for 2023, the top score in the 2020 LGNZ Health and Safety Survey, and we were the joint winners of the 2021 NZ Workplace H&S Award for Governance. We're looking for someone exceptional to continue this great work, with our current Safety and Wellbeing Adviser taking up a 12-month secondment in another department, covering a parental leave absence.

The role

Reporting directly to the General Manager - People and Corporate, you will:

Lead the development and implementation of our safety and wellbeing strategies, policies, procedures and systems

Provide expert specialist advice to management, staff, the Safety and Wellbeing Committee, elected members, contactors (internal and external) and volunteers

Coordinate our internal and external audit processes, including SafePlus

Engender a continuous improvement approach to safety and wellbeing, bringing others along on the journey

Lead our diversity and inclusion programme

Skills and experience

We're open to a range of backgrounds and experience in this role. We're not interested in old-school health and safety stalwarts who take a compliance or authoritarian approach.

So, what you'll absolutely need:

Experience in health and safety management

Experience in and knowledge of the relevant NZ health and safety legislation, codes of practice, guidelines and standards

To be able to communicate effectively with a wide demographic and have a high standard of written work

To be able to build relationships and trust both within and outside the organisation

To be pragmatic and practical while showing conceptual thinking

To demonstrate high levels of emotional intelligence and empathy in all situations

An appreciation of te ao Māori or the willingness to learn

What we'd love you to have:

A tertiary degree in Health and Safety or a related field; or equivalent experience

The confidence to present in front of a group of people

What we'll offer

An organisation that values a modern, holistic approach to safety and wellbeing (including Safety Differently/Safety II concepts)

A collaborative, supportive team with a genuinely family-friendly environment

Access to a range of staff wellbeing support, with five weeks' annual leave

The salary for the role will depend on your level:

Safety and Wellbeing Adviser $75k - $101k

Senior Safety and Wellbeing Adviser $83k - $110k

Where we are

If you're already in the Manawatū, you'll know how good we have it with a perfect mix of big city attractions in Palmerston North, and lots of smaller towns, villages and rural lifestyle opportunities in the district. We're a stone's throw from the sea, the mountain and Wellington is just a couple of hours to the south. We've got some of the best schools in the country, a thriving university and the region is, we think, one of the best places in New Zealand to raise a family. If you're looking to leave the grind of the inner city and find a better way of life for your whānau, check out more about the Manawatū here. Relocation support would be available to the successful candidate.

How to apply

Sound like you? Please click the ‘apply' button below. For a confidential discussion about the role, contact Frances Smorti, General Manager - People and Corporate at or on 027 202 3625.