Senior Analyst

Environmental Standards Scotland

Apply before 11:55 pm on Sunday 16th October 2022



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This is a permanent and pensionable appointment and new entrants will normally start on the minimum of the pay range.



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ESS was established by the UK Withdrawal from the European Union (Continuity) (Scotland) Act 2021, which received royal assent in January 2021. ESS was established and gained its statutory functions and powers on 1 October 2021.

ESS has been set up to ensure environmental laws and standards are adhered to in Scotland, replacing the European Union’s scrutiny and enforcement role after Brexit.

The remit of ESS covers a broad range of environmental law, including all aspects of environmental protection and harm, particularly in relation to human beings and their enjoyment of the environment.

ESS’ role is to scrutinise, investigate and secure improvements in public authorities’ compliance with environmental law, the effectiveness of environmental law, and the way it is being implemented and applied in Scotland.

The body has recently published a Draft Strategic Plan for Consultation, setting out how it will operate and function, including how it will act objectively, impartially, proportionately and transparently. ESS is accountable to the Scottish Parliament for the effective performance of its functions.

The organisation will carry out its role by:

  • Monitoring information about the quality of the environment in Scotland and the effectiveness of environmental law, including representations brought forward by citizens and interested groups;
  • Seeking information from public authorities, including the Scottish Government, and working with the public authorities to understand the background to regulatory policies and practices;
  • Selecting a small number of cases for detailed investigation, prioritising cases where there is the greatest risk to the environment;
  • Working with public authorities, where necessary, to seek to agree changes in practice to reflect environmental law, or develop advice on recommended changes to the law to improve its effectiveness.

This post sits within the Strategy and Analysis Team at ESS and will report directly to the Data and Quantitative Analysis Team Leader.

Job description

This is a key role within the Strategy and Analysis Team. We are seeking an enthusiastic and passionate Senior Data Analyst to lead and develop systems for monitoring and analysing data to identify areas of concern around compliance or the effectiveness of environmental law.

This will include engagement with a wide range of public authorities and NGOs on environmental data.

The role will also support ESS with its own performance monitoring.

You will work in an interdisciplinary evidence team comprising colleagues with a range of backgrounds including legal, regulation enforcement, research, scientists and policy specialists.

You will need to be able to develop analytical plans, engage senior colleagues and stakeholders, access, manage and analyse data, and clearly communicate key insights to influence the direction of ESS’ work. Your work will be guided be environmental priorities set out in ESS’ final strategic plan, to be published in the Autumn.

The postholder will be working closely with other statisticians in Scottish Government and its Agencies and will be expected to quickly become the informed analyst on environmental standards.

Key duties and responsibilities will include:

  • Lead specific programmes of monitoring and analysis of environmental statistics using a wide range of existing evidence and data sources as part of a programme of analytical priorities agreed by the ESS Board.
  • Undertake policy facing statistics work, including ad hoc analysis and interpretation of Scottish environment data, independent analysis of progress towards the Scottish Environment Strategy objectives and targets and preparing briefing for senior officials and the ESS Chairman and Board.
  • Summarise and present findings from key information sources in a user-friendly and engaging manner (including graphics and data visualisations) to the Senior Management Team and Board of ESS to identify areas of concern around compliance or effectiveness of environmental law and to support ESS investigations into these. Disseminate findings as appropriate to a wide range of stakeholders and encourage their wider use.
  • Line management of a B2 / Fast Stream Assistant Statistician / Data Analyst. Possible additional ad-hoc line management of interns or matrix management within the team as things develop.
  • Lead on quality assurance and data management and embed these good analytical practices across the organisation.
  • Work closely with other analysts and experts in ESS to deliver cross-cutting evidence projects which offer insights into environmental compliance and effectiveness issues.
  • Build effective relationships with analysts and statisticians in public authorities within ESS’ remit to ensure that ESS is abreast of the latest data and evidence.
  • Provide analysis of ESS’ own performance against agreed key performance indicators.


Essential Criteria

  1. Excellent statistical and analytical skills. Delivery of high quality analysis and ability to ensure that evidence and analysis is at the heart of decision making.
  2. Able to acquire appropriate data from a range of organisations, quality assure data sources, manage them appropriately, understand strengths and limitations and ensure data used is appropriate to the analytical task.
  3. Experience of using statistical packages including R (or equivalent).
  4. Strong planning and organisational skills, with the ability to work on projects independently or as part of a multi-disciplinary team, manage workloads and competing priorities and clearly identify policy needs.
  5. Excellent communications skills to work with a range of internal and external stakeholders, align statistical analysis with policy needs and clearly present (including data visualisation) and explain the outcomes, strengths and limitations of data and analysis in a variety of media.

Desirable Criteria

  1. Some economic skills or experience.
  2. Experience of producing data dashboards e.g. using Tableau or R markdown.

Qualifications Required

A first or second class honours degree in a numerate discipline (e.g. Statistics, Mathematics, Economics, Sciences, Business Studies, Psychology, Geography, Data Science or similar). Your degree should contain some formal statistical training;


A PhD or Master’s Degree which contains a high level of statistics or numerate content (e.g. Statistics, Mathematics, Economics, Sciences, Business Studies, Psychology, Geography, Data Science or similar);


applications from candidates who do not have a degree are welcomed, but they must demonstrate that they at least four years work experience in a relevant statistics / data science related field plus continuing professional development in a relevant area that leads to qualifications (for example the Open University Professional Certificate in Practical Statistics).

If you do not clearly demonstrate within your application how you specifically satisfy any of the above criteria, your application will be automatically sifted out.

Technical skills

We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

  • Analysis and Use of Evidence
  • Improving Performance
  • Communications & Engagement
  • Self Awareness
  • A strong commitment to investing in your personal and professional development
  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
  • A Civil Service pension with an average employer contribution of 27%

ESS is a small organisation focused on ensuring Scotland achieves the highest environmental standards. We seek skilled individuals who have a passion for improving environmental standards through public service, that can work as part of a multidisciplinary team.

In return, we offer a competitive employment package, including the civil service pension and a strong commitment to investing in each member of our teams personal and professional development. We also offer opportunities to work on some of the most significant and meaningful environmental challenges facing us today and the chance to play a part in helping to improve the quality of the environment for the people of Scotland.

We will support the successful candidate to maintain membership of the Government Statistician Group if they are already part of that group. If they are not already and they have suitable qualifications, we will support them to apply for badging as a member in due course if this is desirable.

We are building a culture that encourages inclusion and diversity and we particularly encourage applications from people from a diverse range of backgrounds.

The post allows flexible working and is open to full time or, by agreement, other working patterns including part-time, job-shares or compressed hours.


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Ability, Experience and Technical skills.

The application process will consist of the following:

  • Civil Service Numerical Test
  • CV
  • Personal Statement
  • Technical Statement


After submission of the first stage of your application you will be invited to complete a Civil Service Numerical test. If you successfully pass the test, you will be invited to complete the final stage of the application. 

Please complete the online tests as soon as possible (within 24-48 hours is recommended), the closing date for the tests and full application form is 23:55 on 16th October 2022. If you fail to complete the online tests before the deadline your application will be withdrawn. Guidance for the tests will be available when you are invited to take the tests. The tests are administered online and accessed via the CS Jobs website.

Please bear in mind that the Online Test deadline is the same as the deadline for applications. Ensure you leave enough time to complete your full application after having received your test result.

The selection panel will use your application to assess your suitability for the role against the essential criteria during sifting using your statement of suitability and your CV . 

The personal statement (no longer than 1,250 words) should explain why you consider your personal skills, qualities and experience are suitable for this role, with particular reference to the essential criteria in the person specification.

You should read each of the essential criteria, and think about a time, or an example, that can help demonstrate your knowledge/skills. Remember, this must be evidence based and your answers should be clear, concise and reflect what actions you undertook. You may want to use the STAR(R) approach to respond to each criterion. You should aim to use approximately 250 words per criteria

The technical statement (no longer than 1,000 words) should demonstrate your experience and achievements in analysis, including:

  1. Acquiring data and understanding customer needs
  2. Data analysis
  3. Presenting and disseminating data effectively.

You will be asked to attach your technical statement as a Word Doc or PDF. Please ensure it is anonymised.

If you do not attach the technical statement your application will be sifted out.

If you are shortlisted, you will be provided with full details of the next stages of the selection process.

Please note: If you fail to demonstrate how you meet the minimum qualifications as stated above, your application will be automatically sifted out.

You will be tested against these competencies at interview.

  • Analysis and Use of Evidence
  • Improving Performance
  • Communications & Engagement
  • Self Awareness

Sift provisional dates week beginning 17 October 2022

Interviews likely to be early November

Interviews will be held at our Thistle House Offices, Edinburgh

If an alternative virtual interview is required, we will ask all applicants to ensure that they have a suitable space to complete the online interview. In addition, a personal device of choice that can access MS Teams will be required, alongside access to personal Wi-Fi/Broadband that has capacity to carry both audio and video feeds

Further Information

A reserve list may be held for a period of 9 months from which further appointments can be made.

Any move to ESS from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at

If successful and transferring from another Government Department a criminal record check may be carried out.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Disclosure Scotland on your behalf. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstances some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Government Recruitment Service of your intention by emailing stating the job reference number in the subject heading.

For further information on the Disclosure Scotland confidential checking service telephone: the Disclosure Scotland Helpline on 0870 609 6006 and ask to speak to the operations manager in confidence, or email

New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the 'Contact point for applicants' section.

Reasonable Adjustment

If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes. 

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should: 

Contact Government Recruitment Service via as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs. 

Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals
Further information on nationality requirements

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.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans initiative.
The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment.
Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :

  • Name : Alasdair Dewar
  • Email :

Recruitment team :

  • Email :

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