Local government revenues officer

benefits officer

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would help to collect the money needed to pay for local public services. You’d explain to people how much their contribution is. You could also help people get the financial help they deserve. You would work for a local council and deal with housing benefits, rents, council tax and non-domestic rates.

As a revenues officer you would collect rents, council tax, non-domestic or business rates and deal with the related administrative work. You’d apply the rules carefully and fairly so that everyone pays the right amount and gets the money they are entitled to.

You would:

  • Calculate rents, council tax and business rates
  • Send bills and reminders
  • Collect and record payments
  • Deal with enquiries face to face and by phone, email and post
  • Keep accurate clerical and computerised records
  • Recover arrears of rent or council tax
  • Make home and business visits
  • Identify possible discounts on charges like council tax and business rates
  • Take legal action where necessary
  • Attend court when required

As a benefits officer, you would arrange the payment of housing and council tax benefits.

You would:

  • Check if a person is eligible for benefits
  • Check and process claim forms
  • Arrange payments
  • Communicate with other services like social services, housing associations and government departments
  • Deal with enquiries face to face and by phone, email and post
  • Keep accurate paper and computer records get back money when a benefit has been wrongly paid
  • Arrange legal action when necessary

With experience, you may also work on housing valuations or investigate potential cases of fraud.

In both roles, you would deal with a wide variety of people and need to clearly explain complex rules and processes to them. People may become upset or angry, so you’d need to be tactful but also assertive.

Working conditions

Hours

In a full-time job you would work 35 to 37 hours a week, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally be asked to work at the weekend or in the evening. Part-time work is often available.

Environment

You would be based in an office which would be partly open to the public, and spend some of your time dealing with enquiries at a counter or reception.

Travel

In some jobs you would travel around your local area to visit benefit claimants at home.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Communicating with people
  • Explaining things
  • Working as part of a team
  • Helping customers
  • Being tactful
  • Communicating ideas through writing
  • Accuracy
  • Using computers
  • Finding solutions to problems
  • Working with numbers
  • Paying attention to detail

Build your skills

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

Qualifications at SCQF Level 4-5 minimum.

Useful subjects

  • Maths (required by most employers)
  • English (required by most employers)
  • Business
  • ICT
  • Administrative and numerate subjects

Helpful to have

Qualifications that demonstrate ICT, administrative and financial skills such as Skills for Work Financial Services (SCQF level 5).