£21,000 Starter - £29,000 Experienced
37 to 40 a week (evenings / weekends occasionally)
Where to start
You can get into this job through
an apprenticeshipworking towards this rolevolunteeringapplying directly
You could complete a revenues and welfare benefits practitioner higher apprenticeship if you're working for a local authority or advice organisation.
This apprenticeship will typically take 12 to 18 months to complete.
You'll usually need 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A-Levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship.
You could start as an admin assistant with an advice organisation and work your way up with further training in welfare rights.
You'll usually need GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent qualifications, in English and maths.
Many people start by volunteering in an advice centre.
As a volunteer you would receive training in interviewing skills and advice topics like welfare benefits and housing. It can take between 6 and 12 months to get enough experience to apply for jobs.
You can apply for jobs if you have experience of supporting people facing difficult situations, for example, those with money, family or housing problems. A qualification in counselling, legal work or advice and guidance could be useful, though your employer may give you on-the-job training.
The ability to speak a second language or a qualification in British Sign Language could be helpful for some jobs.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- customer service skills
- sensitivity and understanding
- knowledge of psychology
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Restrictions and Requirements
You'll need to pass enhanced background checks
What you’ll do
In this role you could:
- check clients are claiming all the benefits they are entitled to
- help people fill in forms
- help clients get ready for appeals
- speak on behalf of clients at appeal tribunals
- work with benefits agencies and other organisations
- refer clients to other services
- keep confidential records
- learn about relevant laws and welfare reforms
- publicise your service or welfare campaigns
- train staff and volunteers
You could work in the community, at a client's home, in a court, in an NHS or private hospital or at an outreach centre.
Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could move into specialist advice and casework, or be promoted to a team leader or management post.