The joint executive director for Adult Social Care and Integrated Commissioning is a key role both for the local authority and for health, says Surrey County Council’s chief executive Joanna Killian

Healthy, wealthy and green Surrey may have an image of affluence, but it is not the full picture of the county, Surrey County Council’s chief executive Joanna Killian explains. That is why the public sector across Surrey has a strong levelling up agenda.


“Our major priority is making sure no one is left behind,” she says. ”There are pockets of deprivation with significant health inequalities and a stark gap in life expectancy between neighbouring communities within the county. This has to change.”

Joanna Killian 3x2Joanna Killian

At the heart of Surrey’s strategy is an ambition to create sustainable communities, keep children safe and support people with education, skills and employment opportunities to ensure everyone meets their full potential.

And there is a host of work to be done on health and wellbeing, ensuring residents live healthy, active and fulfilling lives, giving everyone the health and social care support they need. Those ambitions, part of Surrey’s Health and Wellbeing Strategy, permeate through everything Surrey does.

Claire Fuller 3x2Dr Claire Fuller

And whilst health and wellbeing is centre stage in most local authorities – particularly in the aftermath of the coronavirus crisis – Surrey is a little different. The county has a health devolution deal that is working to make its vision a reality.

Now Surrey County Council and the local NHS have come together and are looking for a joint executive director for Adult Social Care and Integrated Commissioning to work across the wider health and care partnership, to deepen relationships and to develop the strategy for improving health outcomes of local people.

Ms Killian explains: “The health and wellbeing agenda runs through everything we do at Surrey, through health and social care, of course, but also in the way we think about supported housing, the challenge of climate change and the importance of great education and high quality work for wellbeing.”

“Surrey is committed to thinking of health as the starting point for the way we build all our services.”

The joint executive director for Adult Social Care and Integrated Commissioning is a key role both for the local authority and for health, she says. It will involve commissioning services for adults across the county – for elderly care, mental health, learning disabilities, autism and support for carers.

“It is a really big role, with a really large budget to oversee, but at its heart it is about the people of Surrey.”

In addition to the size of the role, there is also a complexity. The successful candidate will be responsible to both Ms Killian and the County Council members and to Dr Claire Fuller and the clinical commissioning group.

Dr Claire Fuller, who is the senior responsible officer for Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership, and the interim accountable officer for NHS Surrey Heartlands CCG adds: “This is a complex role. We are going to have to be increasingly creative in how we provide services in a world that will be so different. As we continue our journey of health and care integration, this joint role will be critical in how we take that forward. The post-holder will be equally accountable to the Council and to the local NHS and a key member of both the Council’s senior leadership team and the Surrey Heartlands ICS executive team.”

While the new director will need to have a background of social care – the post comes with the statutory responsibility for social care – the ideal person will also be someone with experience of health systems. But crucially, Ms Killian says: “It has got to be someone who is a leader and a relationship builder. They have to be highly resilient and able to cope with constant change.”

The council is currently in pursuit of unitary status. As well as the raft of change brought about by covid-19 – changes to work patterns, budgets, local economies and priorities – the new candidate could find themselves in the midst of a completely changing organisation. The ability to deal with flux will be crucial.

Dr Fuller continues: “Our health and social care partnership is highly regarded. We have a devolution deal and need to continue to maximise the benefits for the people of Surrey.

“There is a great relationship between health and the Council in Surrey, and a really strong shared vision than binds us together. And that’s supported by increasingly integrated strategic and operational mechanisms to translate our vision right through to the frontline.

The new joint executive director for Adult Social Care and Integrated Commissioning will have the unique opportunity to be at the cutting edge of that. They will be helping to build and develop our partnership, leading change and above all, delivering better health and wellbeing outcomes for local people.”

Ms Killian adds: “This is a job for someone who loves a challenge, can convert the complex into the simple and is focused on making a difference to our residents.”

To learn more and apply to Surrey’s vacancy of joint executive director for Adult Social Care and Integrated Commissioning view the job advertisement by clicking here.