Head of operations: waste and streetscene

Play a key role in bringing together the council’s waste collection and street scene services across the county.

A photograph of the North Yorkshire coast next to a photograph of a man in a high visibility jacket smiling in front of a waste collection vehicle.

Welcome Letter from Michael Leah, Assistant Director Environmental Services

Thank you for your interest in this fascinating new role which has been created following the unification of eight separate councils to form the new North Yorkshire Council in April 2023. This is a pivotal time for North Yorkshire - our new council has the largest geographical area in England and is the third largest unitary authority.

Our new council enables us to streamline services and deliver efficiencies of savings at a time when, like all local authorities, financial pressures will be significant, whilst at the same time maximising opportunities of scale and improving outcomes for residents and businesses. With many rural residents, the council places communities at the heart of what we do. We aim to be the most local large council in England and, at the same time, ensure that we are in a strong position to manage the challenges ahead, including rising costs and increased demand for services.

A portrait of Michael Leah, Assistant Director Environmental Services

North Yorkshire is a thriving and stunning place. Our residents are proud and our economy is thriving. Through your services that enhance the look and feel of our place, you will ensure that people continue to feel proud to live and visit this great county. Your services have the privilege to deliver critical daily services to each and every resident in the county. Your performance focussed and visible leadership enables you to robustly achieve the operational requirements of your services to meet customer expectation. You have the confidence of senior stakeholders, including partners and elected members, and hold influence to ensure the service's reputation is enhanced.

As the Head of operations for waste and streetscene, you will play a key role in bringing together and harmonising the council’s waste collection and street scene services across the county. Waste collection and street scene services sit within two assistant director areas, and therefore you will work within two policy frameworks and report in a matrix management approach. This is a unique career opportunity in a visible, high profile role.

As the senior responsible officer, you will set the strategic direction for the service and lead the operational teams to achieve the aims set within that strategy. You will ensure operational services deliver a customer focused commercial waste service that supports colleagues in delivering an increase in commercial waste income, from the existing and an expanded customer base. 

You will help attract commercial income through the trade waste service as well as helping generate income through domestic chargeable services, for example garden waste collection service. You will ensure services meet and, where possible, exceed our obligations under waste management legislation and environmental best practice.

This is a critical and fast-moving role, with a large remit at a pivotal time for you and for the council, providing you with a career enhancing opportunity. The role has responsibility for services delivered from eight operating sites with 500 staff and a budget of £20million that may grow if outsourced services are transitioned internally. Therefore, I am looking for a highly visible and experienced senior leader from within the sector who can demonstrate the ability to transform the service and motivate teams as we begin our journey of change and development. You will be a seasoned leader, with a successful track record in strong employee relations and working directly with employee representatives, such as union officials. The role will enable you to shape your services by determining a new structure, in line with the council’s operating model, that will bring together the combined capacity of the former eight councils and external partners to support the organisation moving forward. In addition to shaping the new service, you will also develop and embed the new council's strategic policies for waste and streetscene.

You will be welcomed by talented colleagues who are passionate about delivering exceptional services to North Yorkshire residents. You have the opportunity to integrate successful services to create and further develop services and your teams' career pathways, at the same time as delivering services to each and every resident of our great county.

If you are interested in being part of our team and in making your mark in North Yorkshire, then we look forward to your application. If you want to speak to one of our recruitment colleagues to learn more about the role, please do get in touch.

Michael Leah, Assistant Director Environmental Services

A photograph of two people in high visibility jackets smiling in front of a recycling collection vehicle next to a photograph of a town in North Yorkshire.

About the role

Title: Head of operations: waste and streetscene
Salary: £73,755 to £82,065 plus relocation package
Location: Northallerton / hybrid
Contract: full-time, permanent

Your key objectives as Head of operations: waste and streetscene will be to provide effective strategic and operational leadership and management for the executive, technical and administrative functions of the following:

  • domestic waste and recycling collection services – residual, recycling and garden waste
  • hazardous waste, clinical waste and operational management of the commercial waste service alongside mini recycling centres
  • street cleansing and litter control
  • public conveniences
  • environmental enforcement including, fly-tipping, littering, recycling contamination and allied matters and the removal and disposal of abandoned vehicles
  • works contracted externally
  • service response to emergencies and lead business continuity planning

In leading these services you will:

  • act as a senior leader within the service’s partnership arrangements including Yorwaste, City of York Council and Allerton Waste Recovery Park
  • work with colleagues to ensure contracts facilitate an efficient operational service and that operations are aligned with key contractual commitments to deliver best possible income from arrangements
  • support the management, monitoring and control of key contracts including dry recycling and garden waste disposal contracts, to ensure that quality services are provided in an efficient and effective manner
  • accordingly help ensure best possible income from recycling arrangements
  • act as a point of escalation for customer interactions with the service, recognising and dealing with potential political issues
  • coach and develop managers across the services to develop a safe, efficient service in line with the wider council priorities and values
  • ensure that service delivery meets customer expectations and develop innovative ways of delivering high quality and efficient service processes and procedures that deliver on statutory guidelines, national and local standards
  • provide any necessary reports to the Environment Agency and liaise with the environment agency officers as and when required on waste management Licence matters

You will carry out roles identified within the resilience and emergencies and business continuity policies. These include ensuring plans exist within their service area and appropriate officers are able to respond both in and out of hours as required.

The post is based at County Hall, Northallerton with hybrid working and requires some travel across North Yorkshire and occasionally beyond. We are open to discussions regarding bases in other council locations, however key meetings with executive members and management take place in Northallerton.

The post is politically restricted under the terms of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989.

Our values, behaviours and ambitions underpin everything we do.

Key documents

 Job description (pdf / 381 KB)
North Yorkshire Council structure
Relocation policy

Photographs of buildings and streets in North Yorkshire.

Hear from some of our staff encouraging people to join us


Watch this video to hear Debbie describe her role and our service.


Watch this video to hear George describe his role and our service.

Malton refuse loader

Watch this video of a refuse loader in Malton talking about working in this service.


"I am Nigel and I have worked as part of waste and street scene for 39 years after joining when I was 18. With the exception of driving, at some point since starting, I have undertaken every operational frontline service role including being part of the emergency flood response team. Basically, I love the job. I get to work outdoors in a lovely area and we work hard but have a good laugh at the same time working with some great colleagues. The early starts mean early an finish which allows me to help with the grandchildren and, when I was younger, the early finish allowed me to train and play football for Northallerton Town and do other things. The job still keeps me fit and you get plenty of holidays. If this sounds right for you, I would recommend you give it a go. You will never know until you have tried it."

- Nigel

An aerial view of a North Yorkshire town.

Living in North Yorkshire

North Yorkshire is a thriving county that adapts to a changing world and remains a special place to live and work. 

North Yorkshire's natural beauty is captured in its three areas of Outstanding Natural Parks, National Nature Reserves, stunning coastlines, scenic rural villages, vibrant cities and market towns. North Yorkshire really is a beautiful, thriving and special place to live and work, rich in heritage and culture.

North Yorkshire features significantly in the ten best places to live in the UK in Halifax Quality of Life Survey. The Quality of Life index aims to quantify where living standards are highest in the UK by ranking local performance across a range of indicators.

Richmondshire was placed second in the list, a position boosted by excellent personal wellbeing factors (life satisfaction, happiness).

Hambleton was placed fourth and Ryedale was placed eighth, a truly commendable achievement and another incredible accolade for North Yorkshire. 

Figures released by the Office for National Statistics bulletin positions North Yorkshire as the safest place in England with extremely low crime rates.  

In addition, the county benefits from excellent road and rail links, with easy access via the east coast mainline, the A1(M) and A19. Leeds, York, Newcastle, Durham and Teesside are all easily commutable, and London and Edinburgh are just two hours away by train. 

From its lively cities to pretty villages, rolling countryside and grand coastline, Yorkshire has so much to offer including great employment opportunities for your family members, along with a higher proportion of schools which are good or outstanding compared to national figures.

As a whole North Yorkshire offers a high standard of living working in a stunning location.

You can find out more about what North Yorkshire has to offer on the No place like North Yorkshire website.

A view from above of houses and green space in North Yorkshire.

Why work for us

We are strong performing authority, with supportive political leadership, and talented teams providing the platform to have a fulfilling, challenging and successful career in a truly stunning place.

A recent peer challenge found that the council is a good place to work, with strong leadership and a loyal and committed workforce who have access to well-regarded training and development.

We pride ourselves on being an employer of choice, offering a range of training and development opportunities and career progression allowing you to manage your own development journey and empowering you to control your career. Your career can change with your life here in North Yorkshire.

We positively encourage flexible working and we provide you with the technology you need to work from a wide variety of locations. 

We believe in the importance of inclusion, which is why we are always working towards being a more diverse, equitable and inclusive employer. Find out more about our equality, diversity and inclusion work on our working for us page. You can bring your whole self to work, and we will support you to be the best that you can be. 

Our values, behaviours and ambitions underpin everything we do.

In addition to your salary, we offer a range of great benefits to help you financially make life a bit easier. These include:

  • career average employer contribution pension scheme
  • green car and cycle schemes
  • travel loans
  • shopping and gym discounts

You can find more information on the range of benefits we offer on our total rewards page.

Images of town and coast views in North Yorkshire.

Key dates

Closing date: 26 September 2023, 12 midday

Shortlisting date: 29 September 2023

Interview date: 12 October 2023

Contact us and apply

For an informal confidential discussion about these opportunities, please contact either:

Please submit one Word document that details a comprehensive CV, including current salary, and a supporting statement outlining your suitability for the role.

Applications should be emailed to Sophie.Smith2@northyorks.gov.uk

It is important that your written application fully addresses the experience criteria as detailed in the person specification.

You should include contact details for at least two referees, one of whom must be your current / most recent employer. If you specifically do not wish referees to be approached without your permission, please indicate this.

We will remove your personal details from your application on receipt to enable anonymised shortlisting, therefore it is important that your application is made using one Word document. Please do not send PDF versions.

Please ensure that you have included both your work and home telephone contact numbers and e-mail addresses where applicable.

We believe in the importance of inclusion, which is why we are always working towards being a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive employer. You can find out more about our equality, diversity and inclusion work on our working for us page.

This is a politically restricted post.

We are committed to directly recruiting staff and will not accept applications nor services from agency suppliers in respect of our vacancies.