Principal DCE Advisor

Date:  25 May 2023

Wellington, NZ


About us

The Ministry of Social Development is a people-centred organisation. We’re in communities across the motu, working with partners to help New Zealanders be safe, strong and independent.
We provide social policy and advice to government and assistance, including income, employment and housing support to people of all ages, families, whānau and communities.
As a Te Tiriti o Waitangi partner we are committed to supporting and enabling Māori, whānau, hapū, Iwi and communities to realise their own potential and aspirations.
Our people are as diverse as the communities we serve. We care about the wellbeing and success of our people and provide a supportive and inclusive working environment where people can thrive and be who they are.



Principal DCE Advisor - Wellington


About the role 
Nau mai haere mai ki Te Manatū Whakahiato Ora!

The Office of the Deputy Chief Executive, Strategy and Insights is looking for a highly experienced and influential person with a background in policy or strategy, who would be motivated by work where whānau and communities are at the heart.

If you are a seasoned public servant, a critical and strategic thinker, and like a complex and collaborative environment then this might be the ideal role for you.  This role could be part-time for the right person. 


We want to hear from you if you are looking for a role where you can:  


  • Use your deep understanding of the issues facing the social sector
  • Provide robust advice and recommendations to the Deputy Chief Executive, Group leadership team, and other senior leaders in the Ministry
  • Bring your strategic thinking and political nous to a small team that thrives in ambiguity



You’ll need to work closely with the Group leadership team to manage risks and issues, prepare briefings, and work across the social sector on behalf of the DCE. You will need the confidence to develop and manage relationships at all levels across the Ministry and outside the organisation. 


This role will suit someone with considerable experience in a senior policy or strategic advisory role. It requires someone who values kanohi ki te kanohi engagement, has a working understanding of te ao Māori, and can produce high-quality written and verbal advice. You’ll also need a finely tuned risk radar and the appropriate discretion to hold the confidence of senior leaders. 


A good understanding of the machinery of government is essential and experience in an organisation that serves the public is desired.


Key attributes we are looking for: 


  • Critical thinking, sound judgement and political sensitivity
  • Excellent verbal and writing skills with the ability to provide concise, well-constructed written reporting
  • Ability to deliver under pressure
  • High integrity and accountability
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; able to establish, build and maintain effective and appropriate relationships at all levels of an organisation



How to apply


To apply, click the 'Apply Now' button to upload your CV, cover letter and complete the online application form.  


Note: Your cover letter will be a key part of our assessment process, so please highlight how your experience relates to the key responsibilities listed in the position description. 


All applications must be made online.  If this is not possible or if you have any queries, please contact us at


Internal MSD Employees – please apply through your myHR portal at work.  This will ensure that your myHR employee profile is visible as internal candidate.



Closing date: Sunday, 11th June 2023



Joining us

Joining MSD means being part of a whānau that celebrates the diversity each individual represents.  We show manaaki, we care about the wellbeing and success of people and want everyone to thrive, and be who they are in a supportive and inclusive working environment. We work together to make a difference for communities while doing the right thing with integrity. We are a Treaty partner committed to strengthening relationships with Māori, Hapū, Iwi and communities to realise their own potential and aspirations.

If you have any support or access requirements, we encourage you to tell us when you apply so we can assist you through the recruitment process.


MSD has a COVID-19 vaccination policy that encourages, but does not require, employees to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and its variants, unless the role is identified as requiring vaccination at the time.