Finding A Job
You can set filters specific to your interests, so you only see the jobs that are relevant to you. Filter by: area, profession, salary range, working pattern and much more. You’ll also be able to sort the results to see the most recent first. Signing up to Civil Service Jobs alerts is another great way to see the latest jobs as they are released.
Read through the full job description to learn more about the job being offered. To see a full list of the responsibilities of the role, there will be an attached Role Profile at the bottom of the page. You may find other useful information in the attachments section, such as Candidate Packs, offering you more information about the profession and team you’re interested in joining.
To attract the best people for the job, we may advertise our roles on various career-focused websites. Be aware, though, that to be considered for the job you must follow the application process on the Civil Service Jobs website. We do not accept CVs and Personal Statements sent directly to the vacancy holder.
Before applying for the role, it might be beneficial to check the Civil Service Nationality Rules. Roles in the Civil Service are open to the following groups:
- UK nationals
- Nationals of Commonwealth countries
- Nationals of the Republic of Ireland
- EEA nationals with (or eligible for) status under the EUSS
- Relevant EEA or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
- Relevant EEA or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
- Certain family members of the relevant EU & Turkish nationals
Existing Civil Servants may want to seek a loan move to temporarily carry out a different role in another government department. These types of moves are supported in the Civil Service, benefitting both the hiring organisation with filling a temporary, high-priority vacancy, but also the individual who is seeking to build their knowledge and experience.
There are a number of different factors to consider when applying for a loan move between departments. You can find out more by the visiting the Loans Policy page on GOV.UK.
When applying for a role, you will firstly be asked to provide some basic information about yourself in an Equality Monitoring form.
We ask for some information about you, including questions about your background. We’re keen to learn more about the diversity of the people who work for DfT and those applying for our roles. We use this data to continue improve how we advertise our jobs to make sure people from all backgrounds feel encouraged to apply for our jobs.
Once you have input your personal details, you will either complete an online test or be asked to submit your full application. Depending on the skills and experience we’re looking for, we may ask you to tailor your application. This could mean writing a short personal statement, uploading a CV or completing an application form addressing specific questions. Or any mix of these.
A CV is used to provide the sift panel insight into your career to date. We’re keen to learn more about where you’ve worked in the past, your responsibilities and experience you’ve gained. Your CV should clearly set out your full career history, starting with the most recent role first.
Focus your CV on the relevant skills you’ve gained from each role you’ve held and how this can translate to the role you are applying for.
Your CV shouldn’t be too long, 1-2 pages is plenty.
You should also remove any personal information from your CV that could identify you. This includes your name/title, educational institutions, age, gender, email address, postal address, phone number and nationality/immigration status.
Recruiting in this way is called ‘Name-Blind’ recruitment. It means we recruit based on your knowledge and skills, and not on your background, gender or ethnicity.
A personal statement is your opportunity to explain in detail how your life experiences and skills meet the job description requirements of the role you’re applying for.
Personal statements can vary in length, but they are typically between 500 and 1,250 words. In the advert we will outline what we want you to demonstrate through your personal statement; please take the time to familiarise yourself with this and consider how you can best demonstrate your skills, experience and knowledge.
If we are asking you to demonstrate multiple skills in your personal statement, please consider splitting the statement into sections. We recommend you use the full word count and please remember to check your grammar before submitting your application.
You should always read the advert and attached role profile to understand the full requirements of the role. Make sure you can tailor your personal statement to demonstrate why you’re the best candidate for the job. For example, if the job requires you to take calls from the public, refer to your previous experience of working with customers: what you were responsible for and key achievements in your career so far.
More often than not, an application form will ask you to provide a response to a specific Civil Service Behaviour or a Technical skill. Each answer will be allocated 250 words and we recommend you use the full word count for each answer.
Below is a snapshot of what the application form could look like.
Using the example above, let’s imagine you are applying for an AA/AO role and are completing a Behavioural application. There won’t be a specific question to answer, rather, we are looking for you to provide evidence of a time when you have demonstrated the Behaviour being assessed.
You can find the full list of Civil Service Behaviours and specific indicators for each grade in the Civil Service Behaviour document.
Below is the AA/AO Communicating and Influencing behavioural descriptor. You should use this description to tailor your answer, and show how your experience and skills match what we’re looking for.
We recommend you structure your answer using the STAR Method (Situation, Task, Action, Result).
In behavioural answers we are looking for you to describe how you did something rather than just stating what you did. Try to focus on your personal input, using terminology such as “I delivered / I did / I implemented” rather than using “We delivered / We did / We Implemented”
Civil Service online tests are used to assess the Ability aspect of the Success Profile Framework.
There are seven main psychometric tests used:
- Verbal Test
- Numerical Test
- Judgement Test
- Management Judgement Test
- Work Strengths Test
- Casework Test
- Customer Service Test
These tests aren’t used in every recruitment campaign, and it will be outlined in the job advert if any of these tests are being used.
To help you prepare for an online test, visit the Online Tests Guidance Page where you can take practice tests, watch guidance videos and read more about the tests.
The Department for Transport and its agencies actively promote diversity and inclusion. Our aim is to help everyone reach their potential. We can offer reasonable adjustments where possible throughout the recruitment process, as well as part of our standard offering to all staff.
Our Disability Confident Scheme and Reasonable Adjustments ensure that we’re giving all candidates an equal opportunity to demonstrate their suitability for the job, and that our recruitment process is fair and inclusive for all candidates.
Disability Confident Scheme (DCS)
Through the Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) we’re able to offer those candidates who meet the minimum criteria of the job description being offered a guaranteed interview.
Our goal is to encourage more people with disabilities into applying for roles with the Department for Transport and its agencies, and to give those candidates the opportunity to demonstrate their skills, experience and ability to do the role.
‘Reasonable Adjustments’ apply to all job applicants who declare a disability under the Department’s Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) status.
When you tick that box in the written application stage, you will be asked if you require reasonable adjustments in the next stages of the process. If you do require any reasonable adjustments, please see the contact details of the vacancy holder at the bottom of the job advert.
There are several categories which help us understand what reasonable adjustments may be required, and you may identify with more than one category. These include but are not limited to:
- Hearing loss, such as deafness or difficulty with hearing.
- Visual impairments, ranging from partially sighted to blindness.
- Motor disabilities, which include a variety of neurological and orthopaedic disabilities, such as cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, or multiple sclerosis.
- Learning disabilities,
- Neurodiversity, such as dyslexia, dyspraxia or dyscalculia, AD(H)D or autism.
- Mental health conditions.
- Long-term chronic health conditions.
Your needs are unique to you. We acknowledge that not all disabilities may be visible, and that some may only be visible at certain times.
Understanding your needs
The most appropriate person to give advice regarding your needs resulting from your disability is always you.
Rather than the vacancy holder make assumptions about what you might need, you will be able to tell them what adjustments would be needed for you to complete your application, interview or assessment to the best of your ability.
If you require an adjustment to the application stage of the process, then you will find a point of contact in the job advert under the “Apply and further information” heading.
If you complete the online application process, you are encouraged to complete the ‘Do you require an adjustment?’ section.
You can see in advance of applying for the role what the entire selection process will involve. For instance whether it will include an on-screen interview, written exercise, assessment, etc. You will find this detail in the job advert under the heading “Things you need to know”. This should provide you with time to consider what adjustments you might need as you progress.
As adjustments can take time to arrange, understanding your specific needs as early as possible in the recruitment journey can give the vacancy holder time to make the appropriate preparations.
In completing the application, it is helpful to provide the vacancy holder with your thoughts on what type of adjustment could work for you. This provides a useful starting point for further dialogue to agree the adjustment with you.
Language, Sensitivity & Confidence
It is common to feel nervous and apprehensive when going through any selection process.
These feelings may be enhanced, particularly if you feel you have experienced discrimination in such situations in the past or you may be concerned that your disability could be seen as a hindrance.
Our vacancy holders will always look to put you at ease by communicating with you in a manner that is both clear and sensitive to your needs.
Our aim is to assure you that your needs are being fully considered and that you can complete the selection process in as stress-free a manner as possible.
Types of Reasonable Adjustments available
Adjustments are tailored to your specific needs.
Here are some examples of the types of Reasonable Adjustments that could be considered, subject to your specific needs and recognising that this is not a ‘a one size fits all’ approach:
- Extra time allowed during the interview for you to answer the questions.
- Additional time allocated to an assessment exercise, such as a Written Analysis exercise.
- Questions provided ahead of the interview.
- Interviews/assessments scheduled for an appropriate part of the day to meet your medication or energy needs.
- Additional breaks available during the interview/assessment.
- Providing a British Sign Language Interpreter.
- Providing interview questions in a written format (hard copy or on screen) as well as spoken aloud.
- Presence of hearing loops in rooms.
- Interviewing ‘face to face’, on screen or in a room, so that lipreading is possible.
- Providing a reader, so that questions or passages can be located easily and repeated.
- Providing Braille and large format assessment materials.
- Making provision for your guide dog’s wellbeing or any other equipment you would need to bring to the interview/assessment.
- Providing a well-lit environment, should you be partially sighted.
- Offering a choice of coloured paper for printed questions or assessment exercise instructions.
- Offering extra time to review the questions and any other written material ahead of the interview/assessment.
- Providing questions on screen, if interviewed online, or on paper, if interviewed ‘face to face’.
- Providing a scribe or typist for written tasks or providing a laptop computer.
At present, many of our interviews are being conducted virtually. If you have been offered an interview, you will receive all the information about when, where and how the interview will be conducted.
Should your interview be held face-to-face:
- Ensuring you have quiet space to prepare before the interview, rather than a busy reception/waiting area.
- Ensuring the interview location is fully accessible.
- Offering video interviews as standard to accommodate your needs as a reasonable adjustment
To discuss your specific requirements, you should contact the named vacancy holder which is provided within the job advert.
Invitation to Interview
If you have asked to interview for a role, you will receive an email to inform you of this offer. This will normally contain a selection of dates and times, so you can choose a slot that suits your availability. Interview slots are booked on a first-come-first-served basis and we recommend responding at your earliest convenience to secure a time that suits you.
Interview Dates and Locations
We will aim to meet the dates set out in the advert. There may be occasions when these dates will change. You will be provided with sufficient notice of any change in dates.
Currently, most of our interviews are held virtually via Microsoft Teams. You will be provided with the details of how your interview will be conducted via email.
If your interview is to be held via Microsoft Teams, you will be provided with guidance and instructions on how to join your interview and the basic features of Teams.
If your interview is to be held face-to-face you will be provided with the full details well in advance of your interview to ensure you have enough time to plan your travel. Should you require any Reasonable Adjustments to facilitate your face-to-face interview, please see the Reasonable Adjustments tab on this page for more information.
Interview Structure and What to Expect
Civil Service interviews are designed using the Success Profiles Framework which assesses you against a range of elements: Experience, Technical, Behaviour and Strengths. At interview we won’t necessarily assess you against all of these elements, but we will ask a range of questions linked to what is required for the job.
To find out what is being assessed for the specific role you’re applying for, please refer to the job advert and role profile attached at the bottom of the advert.
We recommend you familiarise yourself with the Success Profiles Framework to ensure you’re prepared for the interview. You can view the YouTube videos below or find out more on GOV.UK
Interviews typically last 30-60 minutes and you will be interviewed by a panel of at least three people. The interview panel should always be of mixed gender. The panel will usually consist of a hiring manager, someone from the wider team/directorate and an independent assessor. Interviews will be conducted virtually or face-to-face.
We are likely to ask you a range of questions in different styles. All the questions we ask will be linked to the essential criteria outlined in the role profile attached to the job advert.
Your interview may also include questions about:
- how you would manage situations relevant to the role
- your previous experience
- your professional skills and knowledge
- what energises and motivates you
Example Interview Questions
Situational: “You have a number of conflicting priorities and you will be unable to deliver against all of them on time. What would you do?”
In a situational interview question the panel are looking to understand how you would approach a given scenario rather than an example of something you have done in the past.
Experience: “What experience do you have of …?”
Experience and Technical questions may seem similar, and almost interchangeable, but there is a key difference.
Experience is the knowledge or mastery of an activity/subject gained through involvement in, or exposure to it.
Experience questions tend to focus on the roles and environment in which you have applied your technical skills. In experience questions we are looking for you to demonstrate the breadth of your experience in a particular activity. Focus on what you did but also how you did it.
Answers to Experience questions are typically 5-8 minutes long and the interviewer is likely to ask you follow up questions.
Technical: “What is the difference between quantitative and qualitative research?”
Technical questions are looking for you to demonstrate the depth of your specific professional skills, knowledge and qualifications. The technical skills required for the role will be outlined in the role profile attached to the job advert.
The technical question above is linked to the Level 1.2 Data Analysis & Scientific Advice. For this question we are looking for you to highlight the key differences between these two types of research. Consider how you may conduct the different types of research, when they should be used and the pros and cons to each.
Answers to technical questions are typically 5-8 minutes long and the interviewer is likely to ask you follow up questions.
Behavioural: “Please tell me about a time when you had to manage conflicting priorities to ensure a project or piece of work was delivered on time.”
The question above could be a question for the ‘Delivering at Pace’ behaviour; you can find the full Civil Service Behaviour Framework here which outlines the requirements for each grade.
In this answer we are looking for you to outline how you have previously approached conflicting deadlines to deliver something on time.
For example, think about the steps you took, the resources you used and how these were prioritised, how you motivated your team/others to deliver on time and the outcome.
The role profile attached to the job advert will outline the behaviours being assessed at interview. Any behavioural questions that are asked will be linked to the behaviours listed in the role profile. For behavioural questions, we recommend you use the STAR method to structure your answer.
Situation – What was the situation/context of the task you were given?
Task – What was the specific task you were asked to do/you identified?
Action – What action did you take? This should be the bulk of your answer and it is important to focus on the actions you took, rather than the actions of the wider team/other. Try to avoid saying “we did” and focus on “I did”.
Result – What was the outcome of the actions you took?
Answers to behavioural questions are typically 5-8 minutes long and the interviewer is likely to ask you follow up questions.
Strength: “Would you say you are someone who naturally looks at the big picture?”
You can find the full list of Strengths in the Civil Service Strengths Dictionary. Strengths are defined as things that we do regularly, do well and that motivate us. Strengths won’t be outlined in an advert, but they will be linked to one of the Behaviours being assessed. For example, if one of the Behaviours being assessed is ‘Seeing the Big Picture’, you may be asked a question to determine whether ‘Strategic’ is a strength of yours. Having the ability to think and work on a strategic level is key to the ‘Seeing the Big Picture’ Behaviour.
Strength questions should have short, snappy responses that describe how much you enjoy a particular activity, how often you do it, and how good you are at it. Answers to Strength questions are usually 1-2 minutes.
Assessing candidates in this way provides a holistic overview of you and assessing your strengths allows a hiring manager to see your potential.
During the interview process you may be asked to complete an additional exercise used to assess your skills for a particular role. This could be something that is done as part of the final interview, or it could be done as the first assessment prior to a standard face-to-face/virtual interview.
The role you’re applying for will determine the type of assessment you are given, if any. These assessments aren’t used in every campaign and the advert will outline if any assessments are included in the interview/application process.
What type of assessments do we use?
- You are provided with a presentation brief and given time to prepare.
- You are then required to deliver your presentation to the interview panel or other assessors.
- The presentation brief will reflect the challenges faced in the role, which could include assessing your technical knowledge of the key subject matter.
- Typically, time will be allocated during the presentation exercise for the interview panel to ask any follow up questions.
- You will typically be asked to review verbal and/or numerical information, presented in a range of formats, in order to draw conclusions and to make your own written recommendations.
- You can sometimes be asked to present your findings to the interview panel or other assessors.
- This type of exercise can assess not only a range of Behaviours but also Technical.
- This exercise is designed to be as realistic as possible.
- Typically, you will meet with a qualified actor, playing the role of a key person in the brief.
- For example, this could be a customer, a key internal or external stakeholder, or a colleague.
- You will be provided with a written briefing about the situation, with time to prepare ahead of the meeting.
- The actor does not follow a script. They work with a detailed briefing, which means they will respond to you in an appropriate and realistic manner.
- You are not required to act, but to deal with the situation as your authentic self.
- You will be observed by an assessor during the exercise.
- You will typically be provided with a range items to review and take action on.
- These actions could relate to the importance and/or urgency of the items, along with the proposed actions you would take.
- The items could include emails, minutes of meetings, reports, and other day-to-day business documents for review.
- This is typically a G7/G6 exercise where you are asked to make a presentation to a range of observers (usually existing staff).
- The observers are all fully briefed by the lead assessor to view your presentation and to ask you key questions.
- The lead assessor is then responsible for rating your performance in the exercise, following a structured discussion with the observers.
The Civil Service Recruitment Principles ensure that recruitment is fair and open, with all role appointments being based on merit.
To support this, each element being assessed throughout the recruitment process (e.g. CV, personal statement, Behaviour, Experience, Technical standard, etc.) will be scored against a 1-7 rating in line with the scoring scale below.
A score of 4 (four) is required to pass any given element.
Scoring Scale 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Not Demonstrated Minimal Demonstration Moderate Demonstration Acceptable Demonstration Good Demonstration Strong Demonstration Outstanding Demonstration No positive evidence and/or substantial negative evidence demonstrated Limited positive evidence and/or mainly negative evidence demonstrated Moderate positive evidence but some negative evidence demonstrated Adequate positive evidence and any negative evidence would not cause concern Substantial positive evidence demonstrated Substantial positive evidence; includes some evidence of exceeding expectations at this level The evidence provided wholly exceeds expectation at this level
Strengths questions differ slightly and are scored on a 1-4 rating, with 1 being a weakness and 4 being a strength. To successfully pass a strength-based question, you must score a minimum of 2 (two).
Scoring Scale 1 2 3 4 Weakness – Lower engagement, lower capability, lower use Learned Behaviour – Lower engagement, higher capability, some use Potential Strength – Higher engagement, some capability, some use Strength – Higher engagement, higher capability, higher use A weakness is defined as a behaviour someone does not enjoy doing, and lacks ability to do. Signs of a weakness include a poor response, lack of engagement, going off topic, or other displacement activity. A learned behaviour is what someone can do well / effectively, however they find it draining – demonstrated because they believe it necessary, rather than through genuine preference. A potential strength is defined as a behaviour that a candidate shows clear willingness, desire and motivation to demonstrate, and can demonstrate some capability, but may not yet be fully developed. A strength is a combination of what someone enjoys doing, and what they’re really good at. Candidates demonstrating strengths do so naturally and consistently. They are us at our peak and are easy to spot.
Using a scoring system such as this enables us to ensure the candidate who scores the highest is offered the role in line with the Civil Service Recruitment Principles. It also allows us to effectively manage our Reserve List candidates and offer them roles based on merit.
If the top scoring candidate declines the role, we would then look to appoint the next highest scoring candidate. All candidates that attend an interview will receive feedback as well as an overall score.
Please note that feedback is only available at the interview stage. Typically, feedback is not given following application sifting but your application is scored on a scale of 1-7.
After your interview, you may be wondering what happens next…
Following the interview, you will receive an email notification that will inform you of the outcome. The length of time to find out the interview outcome may vary from each campaign. It’s advised you check your Application Centre on Civil Service Jobs and your email inbox for updates.
Just remember, whether you are successful or unsuccessful on this occasion, your journey doesn’t end here!
If successful you will receive a provisional job offer via Civil Service Jobs. The job offer is provisional on you successfully passing the necessary pre-employment checks.
You will need to log into your Civil Service Jobs account and accept the provisional offer and submit the requested information to enable us to conduct our pre-employment checks.
Once you have cleared your pre-employment checks, your line manager will contact you to agree a start date and at this stage you will receive a formal offer and contract of employment. Your formal offer and contract will be issued to you electronically via Civil Service Jobs.
We recommend that you do not hand in your notice before receiving a formal offer/contract. Once you have received your formal offer you will need to log into your Civil Service Jobs account and accept the formal offer within 15 days.
Pre-employment Checks and National Security Vetting
Every role in DfT requires us to conduct pre-employment checks. This includes a Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS) check as a minimum as well as checks of criminal records databases, your employment history and social and traditional media.
Some of our roles also require National Security Vetting (NSV) due to the sensitive nature of the work. The checks required for the role will be outlined in the job advert and you can find out more about NSV eligibility/requirements on the Gov.uk site.
Below you can see the typical timescales for completing the different levels of clearance. Please note, if you require CTC, SC, or DV clearance, you will firstly need to successfully pass your BPSS clearance before NSV checks can begin.
- Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS) – up to 17 days
- Counter-Terrorism Check (CTC) – up to 43 working days
- Security Check (SC) – up to 43 working days
- Developed Vetting (DV) – up to 137 working days
Feedback / Reserve List
For most of the roles we advertise, we hold a Reserve List. A Reserve List is used when we have more people pass interview than we have roles available at that time.
Typically, our Reserve Lists are held for up to 12 months, and it means that should a similar role become available in those 12 months, you can be considered for the role without having to re-apply/interview.
When drawing candidates from a Reserve List we appoint in merit order. All candidates will be given a score following interview and the candidate with the highest score will be at the top of the Reserve List.
When we draw candidates from the Reserve List, we will offer the role to the person at the top of the list to ensure we are offering the highest scoring candidate the role.
Reserve Lists can be accessed at any time by our vacancy holders. If a vacancy holder has another job that very closely resembles the one you applied for, and thinks your skills are a good match to the role they have available, they will contact you to talk you through the role. If you are interested in the role, you will then be issued a provisional offer and begin your pre-employment checks.
There is no guarantee you will be offered a role from our reserve lists so if you see a vacancy on Civil Service Jobs that you are interested in, we recommend you apply.
If you aren’t placed on a reserve list, there are always plenty of other opportunities at DfT to explore.
Check out Civil Service Jobs to continue your search.
Working for the Civil Service
The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of Civil Servants.
We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles.
If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with the Recruitment Principles and you wish to make a complaint, in the first instance, you should contact Government Recruitment Services via email: [email protected] If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the Department, you can contact the Civil Service Commission.