Festival Of Communities Assistant

Job Description

Job Context 

The Centre for Public Engagement (CPE) at Queen Mary University of London sits within the Office of the Principal, and is an established team working across the institution to offer support and guidance to colleagues developing public engagement activities. The CPE works across Queen Mary’s three faculties and professional services to support a culture of high quality, mutually beneficial engagement.  

The Festival of Communities is an annual event organised by Queen Mary in collaboration and partnership with local community organisations in Tower Hamlets. The festival is designed to celebrate life in Tower Hamlets, and bring local residents together with staff and students at Queen Mary. It features interactive, hands-on activities linked to research taking place across the university, community activities and stalls, and family friendly activities such as face painting. More information can be found at www.qmul.ac.uk/festival 


Job Purpose

The Festival of Communities Assistant will work in the Centre for Public Engagement (CPE), supporting the delivery of the Festival of Communities taking place on the 8th June 2024. The Festival operations are run each year by the CPE along with a local event production company. This role will support the CPE team in the planning and run-up to the Festival as well as taking on an operational role during the event itself. 

The role will primarily be based in the CPE office in Mile End and Dept W, with flexibility to work remotely when needed.  

We anticipate this role being 0.2 FTE in the first instance (from April), with the potential to increase the number of hours closer to the Festival (May - June) if the candidate has this flexibility.


Main Duties & Responsibilities 

  • Respond to queries from Queen Mary staff and students, and local organisations about taking part in the Festival. 

  • Support the wider promotion of the Festival of Communities internally and locally, liaising with local organisations and schools, arranging the distribution of leaflets and posters and online presence. This includes dropping off Festival packs to each school. 

  • Arrange for railing banners to be put up with support from a local event management company.  

  • Support the Festival of Communities social media platforms and create new content. 

  • Respond to communications queries in the shared Festival email inbox. 

  • With support from the CEM, liaise with exhibitors (both internal and external), providing event information and coordinating the drop-off of equipment. 

  • Prepare logistics for the Festival, including but not limited to, signage, exhibitor lists and other equipment needed. 

  • Work as part of the Festival of Communities delivery team, ensuring exhibitors and Festival Crew are supported and using initiative to solve problems as they arise. 

  • As part of the delivery team, ensure a positive experience for all visitors and exhibitors during the Festival of Communities weekend (8th June). 

  • Support the set up and pack down of the Festival, in Stepney Green Park. 

  • Create and share post-Festival communications internally and externally. 

  • Undertake other duties to support the Centre for Public Engagement within the scope of this role, as determined by the Community Engagement Manager and Public Engagement Manager. 

  • Demonstrate a commitment to QMUL’s ideals of equity and diversity. 

The above list of responsibilities is not exhaustive and the jobholder may be required to undertake other duties commensurate with the level of the role, as reasonably requested by their line manager. 

This job description sets out the duties of the post at the time it was drawn up. Such duties may vary from time to time without changing the general character of the duties or level of the responsibility entailed. Such variations are a common occurrence and cannot in themselves justify a reconsideration of the grading of the post.  



For any enquiries please contact: 

Ife Akinroyeje  - Community Engagement Manager 

Email – i.akinroyeje@qmul.ac.uk 

Or email - festival@qmul.ac.uk  



  • Appropriate relevant academic/vocational qualifications (A Levels, NVQ Level 3, BTEC Level 3) or considerable relevant experience, or equivalent vocational experience in a similar environment  


  • Degree or equivalent qualification, or significant relevant experience in a similar environment 


Below lists the essential and desirable requirements needed in order to perform the job effectively. Candidates will be shortlisted based on the extent to which they meet these requirements.


  • Experience supporting event logistics and operations 

  • Excellent interpersonal skills - able to interact with a diverse range of contacts from multiple disciplinary backgrounds 

  • Ability to adapt to competing priorities and use own initiative to find solutions 

  • Excellent communication skills – written and verbal 

  • Excellent IT skills, including effective use of spreadsheets, email, word processing and databases (Microsoft Office) 

  • Proven analytical and problem-solving capability  

  • Able to demonstrate excellent attention to detail 

  • Required to be flexible in working hours and work across different sites as necessary. 


  • Experience in creating posts for social media 

  • Experience of public engagement, outreach or related activities 

  • Experience in a customer or visitor-focussed environment 


Essential: Requirements without which the job could not be done. 

Desirable: Requirements that would enable the candidate to perform the job well. 


We can only consider candidates who can begin work on the week commencing the 12th of august. 

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to an assesment day onsite on the week commencing the 22nd of July.

Please note that the end date for this role may change depending on workload. 

Roles and responsibilities 

  • Provide professional and courteous support to students and other callers via telephone, guiding them through the clearing process and addressing their inquiries.

  • Assist applicants with the completion of application forms, ensuring accuracy and compliance with university policies and procedures.

  • Act as a knowledgeable resource, providing information on available courses, admission requirements, and any other relevant details.

  • Maintain accurate and up-to-date records of interactions and application progress.

  • Collaborate with the admissions team to ensure a smooth and efficient clearing process.

  • Handle confidential information in a secure and responsible manner.

  • Support admissions officers on ad-hoc tasks


Please see above 


  • Previous experience in a customer service role, demonstrating excellent interpersonal and communication skills.

  • Ability to communicate effectively over the telephone / emails with a clear and professional voice.

  • Strong attention to detail and organizational skills to handle multiple tasks and applications simultaneously.

  • Familiarity with university admissions processes or clearing procedures is a plus.

  • Proficiency in using computer database and software applications relevant to the role.

  • A commitment to providing outstanding service and maintaining a positive and helpful attitude.

The post is to support funded interview research concerning learners of colours’ experience of pursuing graduate career plans. The post would involve recruiting interviewees, setting up interviews, conducting interviews and preparing transcripts for analysis. You would receive full training and supervised throughout all activities. You would conduct around 12 interviews in total as part of this project. Given the focus of this project, you would also need to be a learner of colour (i.e., of African or Asian cultural heritage).

Main Responsibilities

· Utilise and deploy basic research techniques under the supervision of a senior member of staff.

· Assist in the planning and implementation of specific research activities, as directed (specifically, arranging interviews with individuals via email/phone).

· Assist in the collection of data including conducting interviews and focus groups, as appropriate.

· Assist in the analysis of qualitative data, as directed (specifically, conducting interviews either face to face or via Microsoft Teams).

· Contribute to the solution of problems encountered in the research context, referring issues as appropriate to the senior staff (the project lead, Dom Conroy).

· Administration around interview transcript production.

· Potential involvement with initial analysis of interview transcript data.

· Attend weekly (at first) face to face meetings to discuss ongoing work.

· Assist with the presentation of information on research progress and outcomes to relevant sponsors etc (namely, at the Advance HE July 2024 conference and the BERA September 2024 conference).

· Participate in the documentation of the results arising from research activity.

· Contribute towards the publication of research findings in suitable publications.

· Planning and managing resources

· Work to deadlines and manage competing priorities, with direction as appropriate from the line manager. University/school profile

· As appropriate, liaise with relevant internal and external contacts/organisations in related areas of study.

The purpose of the job description is to indicate the general level of responsibility and location of the position. The duties may vary from time to time without changing their general character or level of responsibility.


See Experience/Skills required field


Additional details

To apply for this post, you need to be either a current London Met student or within 18 months of studying for a degree at London Met. This is a requirement of ‘Met Temps’ the agency through which recruitment for this role is being administered. As above, given the focus of this project, you would also need to be a learner of colour (i.e., of African or Asian cultural heritage). To work in this role you would need to register with Met Temps, but note that this can be done retrospectively and you can apply for this role by emailing the relevant application materials to me directly. The rate of pay for this role will be the minimum London pay wage of £13.15 per hour.

Role profile

  • Cover the residence's front desk and deliver the highest standards of customer care in line with Fit for Kings’ commitments. 

  • Cover all reception duties including checking in guests, keeping track of keys, greeting and directing all visitors and managing the phones and email accounts.

  • Responsible for providing a professional, accurate, and efficient service to a wide range of people, including current residents, members of the public, colleagues, and external agencies. 

  • First-line complaint handling, offering, guidance, solutions, and, where necessary, escalation to the appropriate parties.  

  • Logging and monitoring maintenance requests and escalating jobs outside of the agreed service level agreement and providing appropriate feedback to residents.  

  • Ensure all policies and procedures are followed in regard to guests, visitors and visiting contractors/maintenance teams, signing in all visitors and making them aware of health and safety and fire responsibilities.  

  • Manage all incoming post and parcels following the relevant processes.

  • Ensure housekeeping standards are high across the site, including the reception area and communal areas, bedrooms, laundry, etc.  

  • Active participation in team meetings and contribution to working practices to ensure effective service to residents.  

  • Work within a structured framework of all standard operating procedures. 

  • Provide operational support to ensure the effective delivery of a high volume of accommodation turnaround during Welcome to Kings and summer business.

  • Carry out additional tasks and ad-hoc duties when required by the management team.


 Communication & Networking  

  • Provide a range of support for students and the management team within residences.  

  • Provide an immediate source of guidance to residents and demonstrate an understanding of the range of resources within residences and campus.  

  • Professionally manage and respond to high volumes of written and verbal communication with residents and King’s departments. 

  • Provide accurate daily handovers to ensure vital information is shared between all teams and shifts.  

  • Responsible for handling a range of sensitive data in line with GDPR policies. 

  • Triage a wide range of information to appropriate people, for example, residence manager, security, welfare, and conduct teams with the appropriate discretion.  

  • Reporting maintenance matters, gathering detailed information from residents to report jobs directly in planon to ensure appropriate escalations.  


Decision Making, Planning & Problem-Solving 

  • Work autonomously at the front desk and act as the custodian of residence on evenings and weekends and at other times whilst the manager is absent. 

  • Deal with a broad range of inquiries from students, and staff, managing visitors and contractors, etc. 

  • Manage daily handover to the housekeeping team/security and relevant departments.  

  • Provide first line response to emergencies such as fire, facilities outages, and serious resident welfare matters, and escalate appropriately following residence escalation policies.  

  • Complete weekly, daily site audits relating to health and safety, and cleanliness and communicate all findings to relevant parties.  

  • Conduct room/kitchen audits, flagging any issues or concerns to relevant people.

  • Identify immediate health and safety concerns and escalate appropriately.  

  • Help the Residence Manager investigate resident conduct issues as and when appropriate.

Analysis & Research 

  • Input and extract data from a range of software functions such as Mercury, Planon, iAuditor, and KX to manage housekeeping and maintenance tasks.  

  • Management of data from planon to ensure that jobs remain in SLA. 

Teamwork, Teaching & Development 

  • Collaboration with colleagues to manage daily reception duties. 

  • Provide orientation, job training and guidance for newer team members. 

  • Guide housekeeping team and contract cleaners (summer) on daily tasks and specific areas requiring focus. 

  • Present site updates at building together forums. 

  • Managing projects such as room inspections and delivery of green impact with minimum or no supervision. 

  • Orientation of students through the welcome period. 

Physical Demands & Working Environment 

  • A mixture of high-concentration office-based and operational tasks.  

  • Manual handling requirements. 

  • Understanding of the risks involved in the working environment. 

  • Assessing site safety and security on regular inspections  

Pastoral Care 

  • Demonstrate empathy and escalate any concerns for the resident’s well-being. 

  • Handle sensitive information concerning welfare-related incidents with appropriate levels of respect and confidentiality. 

  • Assist vulnerable residents. 

  • Ensure the safe evacuation of residents in the event of fire alarms. 

  • Provide support to residents requiring first aid assistance. 



  • A-Levels or suitable relevant experience

  • Customer Service training or relevant experience

  • Higher Education

  • Hospitality Background


  • Excellent Command of the English Language

  • Strong I.T. Skills

  • Hotel/Youth Hostel/Student Accommodation reception experience

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills

  • Knowledge of foreign languages

  • Interpersonal skills

  • Be friendly, Smiley, sociable and welcoming to our students to create a great atmosphere

  • Ability to comprehend complex issues quickly