Head of Network Services

Department for Work and Pensions

Apply before 11:55 pm on Sunday 2nd April 2023



Reference number



£66,860 - £89,392

Job grade

Grade 6

Contract type


Business area

DWP - Digital

Type of role

Information Technology

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time

Number of jobs available



This role will be based in Blackpool, Manchester or Newcastle. Please find further information on the Corporate hub locations here.

Job summary

Would you love the opportunity to install, maintain, upgrade, and continuously improve a large government organisation’s operating environment - powering one of the largest digital transformations in Europe?

Are you someone who could maintain the ongoing reliability, performance and support of our infrastructure?

If so, this role may be perfect for you.

DWP Infrastructure Services (Networks) are responsible for managing a range of Network Services and Products. Working in collaboration with internal and external partners, stakeholders and customers to ensure the operational stability, availability and quality of DWP Networks.

We are looking for a leader who combines a strong understanding of network technologies with great leadership abilities to lead a team of product owners and delivery managers, collaborating with the network engineering teams to deliver successful outcomes for the Network function.

Our key area of responsibility is to provide a robust highly available, networks to colleagues and customers in c900 offices, 2 Data Centres and 2 resilient cloud-connect peering exchanges.

To ensure our infrastructure has the capacity and capability to support the changing needs of the DWP, we have recently deployed VMware SD-WAN across the estate, our next transformation activity over the next two years which you will oversee, will be to replace our office Lan & WiFi and refresh our Data Centre networks with the latest network solutions.

Job description

As Head of Network Services, you will be responsible for leading a team of 32 Product Owners ensuring optimum service performance of DWP Networks, which includes the following activities: 

Strategic & Financial Management

  • The creation and delivery of a Strategy for Network Service Delivery; ensuring team awareness, buy-in and the ongoing alignment and integration with the overall Tech Services strategy
  • Management of a c£30m pa budget ensuring effective monitoring, control and expenditure is appropriately planned, authorised, progressed and reported. Monitors service outcomes in terms of benefits against targets.
  • Collaboration with network engineering teams to ensure maximum value from investment in network technologies and tools.

Infrastructure Support

  • The accountable Service Owner and decision maker for the performance and quality of Network Service Delivery to agreed service and performance levels.
  • Live Service Management – ensuring continued stability of services ensuring service issues are prevented through proactive lifecycle management of the Network Services.
  • Drive improvements to the User Experience of Network Services through data driven decision making, through the development of Splunk and Service Now Dashboards.
  • Management of network related risks ensuring appropriate management and mitigation plans and actions are implemented and regularly reviewed.
  • Ensure product teams are exploiting all the features and capabilities of the network management tools, demonstrating the value as part of the contract renewal process.

Network Delivery & Improvement

  • Drive the selection, service design and delivery of new network infrastructure solutions, aligned to Network Services Strategy. Ensuring UX is understood and is reflected in design decisions.
  • Collaborate with commercial colleagues to ensure network supplier contracts are fit for purpose, offer good value to the DWP and tax payer.
  • Collaborate with engineering teams to identify opportunities to improve service, managing network projects and programmes to ensure successful delivery and business case outcomes are achieved.
  • Responsible for ensuring network services deliver value for money and capacity is optimised for future need.
  • Own the operational relationships with suppliers ensuring services and products are aligned to industry best practice, regulatory and contractual requirements.

An understanding of the principles and deployment of Next Generation Firewall technologies within security boundaries would be useful when starting this role, as we do invest heavily in training on new and existing network technologies.

Commercial and procurement experience managing multi-million pound contracts ensuring suppliers are delivering good service and value to the client would be handy. Training can be provided to Cabinet Office accreditation level.

Person specification

The essential criteria are outlined in the selection process details.

If you would like to learn more about the role, please contact Richard.hanley@dwp.gov.uk.

• An employer pension contribution of up to 27% For further information please click here.
• Annual leave rising up to 30 days, (based on your working pattern).
• Family friendly flexible working arrangements, such as hybrid working, job sharing, term-time working, flexi-time and compressed hours.
• Learning and development tailored to your role this could include industry recognised qualifications, coaching and mentoring. 
• An inclusive and diverse environment with opportunities to join staff networks including: Women’s Network, National Race Network, National Disability Network (THRIVE) and many more.

This job role may be suitable for hybrid working, which is where an employee works part of the week in their DWP office and part of the week from home. This is a voluntary, non-contractual arrangement and your office will be your contractual place of work. The number of days that anyone will be able to work at home will be determined primarily by business need but personal circumstances and other relevant circumstances will also be taken into account. If you are successful, any opportunities for hybrid working, including whether a hybrid working arrangement is suitable for you, will be discussed with you prior to you taking up your post. 

Salary Information

Salary for this role is from £66,860 (Band min) to £74,392 (Band max).

Where the maximum salary of £74,392 is offered, a Digital Allowance of up to £15,000 per annum is available for exceptional candidates, based on our assessment of your skills and experience.

Our offer to successful candidates will be based on an assessment of your skills and experience as demonstrated at interview.

Existing Civil Servants who secure a new role on lateral transfer should maintain their current salary.

Existing Civil Servants who gain promotion may move to the bottom of the next grade pay scale or 10% increase in salary whichever would be the greater.

Selection process details

Stage 1: Application

Your application will consist of three parts:

1. A Personal Details application form.

2. Your employment history detailing your responsibilities, skills, accomplishments, plus your qualifications and relevant training. Please copy this information into the box field provided.

3. Personal statement up to 1250 words. 

When giving details in your employment history and personal statement you should highlight your experience in line with essential criteria below:

• An effective leader with a strong technical awareness of networking technologies deployed in large enterprise environments who exploits value and business opportunities through adoption of networking technologies will be critical for this role.

• Experience in managing multi-million pound budgets is essential, with the finance acumen to track, analyse and report on financial spend through transparent and regular MI.

• Experienced IT service management background, with essential experience in improving failing service performance and leading teams to be more preventative and proactive in improving service management.

• As an inclusive leader and line manager, it is essential that you can demonstrate the ability to build capability into teams, inspiring and motivating individuals to be fully engaged and execute your vision and strategies. Evidence strong stakeholder engagement and cross team collaboration to deliver successful outcome to all stakeholders.

• It would be essential to have a broad understanding of network technologies such as SDWAN (VMWare), Office Networks LAN & Wi-Fi, Data Centre Networks, Cloud connectivity. 

The sift panel will use the information in your employment history and personal statement to assess your experience, skills and knowledge against the essential criteria above.

For Hints and Tips on completing your application visit our blog Getting Hired at DWP Digital .

Important Information

• You will be asked to complete your employment history any information that you would customarily share on a CV should therefore be entered onto the application form.
• Personal details that could be used to identify you including your name, contact details and address must be removed for your application to be considered.
• If your employment history/personal statement contains any personal details your application will be withdrawn.

Stage 2: Interview

If you’re successful at sift stage, you will be invited to a video interview via Microsoft Teams. There, you will be assessed against the experiences listed in the essential criteria.

You will be asked to do a short (10 minutes) presentation on a specific topic. Further details will be provided to candidates invited to interview. 

Interviews will take place from early-April 2023.

The evidence you provide in your application must relate to your own experiences. If evidence of plagiarism is found your application will be withdrawn.

Further information:

A reserve list may be held for a period of 6 months from which further appointments can be made. 

Reserve list candidates will be posted in merit order by location. 

Find out more about Working for DWP

Any move to DWP name 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 https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk

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 Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service 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 Pre-EmploymentChecks.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk stating the job reference number in the subject heading. 

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening, subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment. 

A candidate is not eligible to apply for a role within the Civil Service if the application is made within a 5 year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.

Before applying for this vacancy, current employees of DWP should check whether a successful application would result in changes to their terms & conditions of employment, e.g. mobility, pay, allowances. Civil Servants that would transfer into DWP from other government organisations, following successful application, will assume DWP's terms & conditions of employment current on the day they are posted, unless DWP has stated otherwise in writing.

Reasonable Adjustment

At DWP we value diversity and inclusion and actively encourage and welcome applications from everyone, including those that are underrepresented in our workforce.

We consider visible and non-visible disabilities, neurodiversity or learning differences, chronic medical conditions, or mental ill health. Examples include dyslexia, epilepsy, autism, chronic fatigue, or schizophrenia.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:Contact Government Recruitment Service via digitalrecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.

Complete the “Reasonable Adjustments” 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.

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

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


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

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) (opens in a new window)
  • 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 (opens in a new window)

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) 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 (opens in a new window).
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.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans (opens in a new window) initiative.
The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment (opens in new window).
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 : Richard Hanley
  • Email : Richard.hanley@dwp.gov.uk

Recruitment team :

  • Email : digitalrecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk

Further information

Appointment to the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with these principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should in the first instance contact DWP by email: HR.BUSINESSASSURANCE@DWP.GOV.UK.
If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the Department, you can contact the Civil Service Commission. Click here to visit the Civil Service Commission.

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