Role overview

The Office is seeking an investigator to join their team to undertake examination and investigations under Section 8 and Section 9 of the Ombudsman for Children Act (as amended) which refers to the investigation of complaints against public bodies, schools, voluntary hospitals and a number of other bodies in receipt of public funding.


The investigator should not only have an aptitude for examining complaints, but also an understanding of the issues concerning the rights and welfare of children, the relevant legislative and administrative framework, the regulatory environment and the standards of administration required of public bodies in the area of children’s rights and welfare.




Job Purpose

The role of the investigator is to conduct impartial, independent and thorough examination of complaints. They objectively analyse the matters raised by the child, or the adult representing the child, as well as the responses/actions of the public body, identify the salient issues and reach a fair conclusion including, where appropriate, seeking appropriate redress. The investigator will manage a caseload and may undertake systemic investigations where appropriate.



Key Responsibilities

  • To work with both children and adults when reviewing and/or investigating complaints;

  • To examine and investigate complaints presented to the Ombudsman for Children’s Office within jurisdiction and in accordance with the Ombudsman for Children Act 2002 (as amended);

  • Adhering to the procedures of the complaints and investigation team within the Ombudsman for Children’s Office while at the same time being alert to and willing to highlight possible improvements and developments of those procedures;

  • To keep up to date with and develop a good understanding of relevant legislation, policy and practice regarding children and young people;

  • To represent the office of the Ombudsman for Children at national public fora;

  • To contribute to the submission of annual reports or any reports as requested by the Oireachtas;

  • To work with relevant agencies to progress children’s issues;

  • Complaint examination. This involves:

    - Analysis of complaints with a view to identifying the key issues.

    - Engagement with complainants to ascertain a full understanding of the core issues and to ensure that expectations are properly    


    - Carrying out appropriate research into the complaint, which may include seeking advice.

    - Reaching a fair outcome.

    - Meeting complainants and officials in public bodies.

    - Managing large caseloads in an efficient manner.

  • Conducting investigations within an agreed timeframe;

  • Developing expertise in specific areas through examining related cases/systemic issues;

  • Promoting good administration in public bodies by making presentations on the role of the Ombudsman for Children’s Office;

  • Building positive relationships and working effectively with colleagues, people that contact our offices to make complaint and with public bodies to establish and maintain their confidence and respect.




Essential Requirements

Candidates must, on the closing date for this competition, satisfy the following requirements:

  • A qualification of at least level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications from a recognised university or other third level institution in a relevant discipline

  • At least 3 years’ relevant experience in the evaluation or analysis of complex issues relevant to the role of investigator

  • Possess the core competencies described below.



Specialist Knowledge/Expertise:

  • Possess a full understanding of relevant legislation, policy and practice regarding children and young people.

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principles underpinning the work of Ombudsman.



Analysis and Decision Making:

  • Proven ability to gather information from a variety of sources such as documentation and through interviews and be able to identify inter-relationships and linkages.

  • Ability to source, analyse and evaluate information for applicability and relevance.

  • Ability to make clear, timely judgements on complex issues that are fair and proportionate.



Interpersonal & Communication Skills:

  • Ability to develop and maintain productive relationships with key stakeholders throughout an investigative process

  • Ability to communicate effectively with children and young people in order to elicit their views

  • Ability to manage conflict and be empathetic, fair and impartial with all parties.



Report Writing Skills;

  • Ability to write reports presenting complex information in an easily understood and accessible format using plain English for publication.

  • Possess strong computer skills with advanced skills in Word and Outlook, and a working knowledge of the Microsoft Office suite.



Management and Delivery of Results:

  • Excellent organisation and people management skills including an ability to prioritise and exercise flexibility in order to achieve results.



Drive and Commitment:

  • Demonstrated commitment to the promotion of the rights and welfare of children.

  • Be self-motivating and committed to a high standard of work performance.



Key competencies for effective performance at Assistant Principal level:

  • Leadership

  • Analysis & Decision Making

  • Management & Delivery of results

  • Interpersonal & Communication skills

  • Specialist Knowledge of Public Sectorand government policies for the sector

  • Drive & Commitment to Public Service Values




It is an absolute requirement that candidates declare any potential conflict of interest at the application stage of the recruitment process. Failure to declare such conflicts of interest which later come to light may result in the candidate being disqualified from the competition or if the candidate is offered and takes up a role with the OCO on the basis of misleading information may result in immediate dismissal from the OCO.




How to Apply

All candidates should visit  where there is a full list of available positions in the OCO with the corresponding downloadable information booklet for each position. There will also be a link to the online application portal to where all applications must be submitted.


To apply, candidates must provide an up to date Application Form and submit their application form via the online application portal below.


Only Application Forms fully submitted online will be accepted into the campaign. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date.





Closing Date




Sigmar Recruitment recruiting on behalf of the Ombudsman for Children

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Recruitment Enquiries:

Shane Mullen


tel: +353 1 9619774