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Lead Psychologist job in New Zealand

Position: Lead Psychologist
Industry: Justice
Service: Community Safety & Offender Rehabilitation
Contract: Permanent Full Time
Location: New Zealand
Job #: 8

These psychology jobs are suited to those with proven management and leadership skills within forensic psychology services.

Duties include recruitment, performance management, staff development, clinical leadership, reporting, financial management, and ensuring service delivery meets contractual as well as health and safety obligations.  Some roles may have a small component of direct service delivery such as completing clinical and risk assessments.

The successful candidate will be motivated by the desire to make a difference and will be able to commit to the vision and values of our clients, particularly around strategies for building safer communities and developing effective culturally appropriate rehabilitation programmes.  

These positions will provide the opportunity to demonstrate skills, knowledge and experience: in building capacity through strategic development and innovation; of developing and managing relationships through engaging stakeholders; competently communicating directions.

The jobs favour applicants with the intellectual and personal capacities of: conceptual thinking; influencing others; being outcome focused; resilience. 

 Ideal candidates will:

  • have a post graduate qualification in clinical or forensic psychology along with familiarity with the 'risk, need and responsivity model' and the 'what works literature'.
  • be competent in risk and clinical assessments of high risk offenders and have excellent English writing skills, including forensic report writing.
  • be able to demonstrate effective management, clinical leadership and supervisory skills.
  • possess an understanding (or willingness to develop) of transcultural psychology and have the ability to engage with Maori and Pasifica cultures.
  • have good time management and problem solving skills, along with the ability to make sound decisions.
  • be an effective communicator with strong relationship management skills.
  • be prepared to consent to criminal conviction and substance misuse background checks.

If interested then apply in order to be evaluated. You don't have to be an active job seeker to apply. Feedback will be provided.  

Suitably matched applicants will receive information about the employers, the locations, and an estimate of likely salary and details of any relocation assistance.

Short-listed psychologists will receive guidance in making applications and interview preparation.

Job alerts will then be forwarded as roles become available.

Expressions of interest are encouraged from both local and overseas psychologists.  New Zealand immigration visas would be available for qualifying overseas candidates and their families.

Shortlisting Criteria

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Case Study

Natalie is a clinical psychologist recruited from the UK. This is what she had to say.

Job hunting from halfway around the world proved no barrier. After two years working in forensic mental health services in the UK, she says New Zealand sounded like an ideal change.

"I wanted to move away from the hectic London lifestyle but was not yet ready to move home to Ireland. I applied for the job in Wellington before moving and was pleasantly surprised at how easy the process was. I was interviewed over the phone, then it was relatively straightforward to obtain visas and to register as a clinical psychologist in New Zealand,"

Natalie says her favourite part of the job is working therapeutically with a complex group of people. "I love the diversity of the role. I work with individuals in prison and the community; I have the opportunity to complete assessments, provide interventions, work on research projects, and supervise others."

Empathy, understanding and analytical skills are vital, along with the ability to step back and make clear decisions about how best to help each individual. "Working therapeutically with offenders requires patience, tolerance and a willingness to work with the person at their level and their pace."

My employer welcomes psychologists with clinical or forensic backgrounds and provides excellent working conditions and a clear career structure. "It is a progressive organisation that respects its psychologists. There's a strong emphasis on rehabilitation and psychologists play a key role in this," says Natalie.

As for her new home: "New Zealand is an easy place to move to and a great place to live, especially if you enjoy the outdoors. It's every bit as beautiful as it is made out to be."