CMA 1758 Principal Case Officer, Mergers

Competition & Markets Authority

Apply before 11:55 pm on Thursday 2nd March 2023

 

Details

Reference number

260968

Salary

£53,527 - £60,599

Job grade

Grade 7

Contract type

Permanent

Business area

Mergers, Legal, Regulatory, Economics

Type of role

Economist
Legal Services
Project Delivery

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Part-time

Number of jobs available

7

Contents

Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, London, Manchester

Job summary

This is an exciting opportunity to join the Competition and Markets Authority and boost your career within its Mergers team. Within a supportive and intellectually demanding environment, you will lead the analysis and/or project management of one or more UK merger cases. This is a post where you will gain experience, using your legal, regulatory, economic or business knowledge and experience, together with your project management skills, for the public good.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is the UK’s main competition and consumer authority. Our aim is to make markets work well for consumers, businesses and the economy. It has exclusive jurisdiction to investigate UK qualifying mergers on competition grounds in all economic sectors, from retail shops to digital markets. Its Mergers team performs this statutory function with, among other professionals, a group of Principal Case Officers (PCOs) running phase 1 and phase 2 merger investigations.

In phase 1 merger investigations, you will use your legal, economic and/or business expertise combined with your project management skills to ensure that any substantive issues are investigated fully, evidence is presented accurately, decision reasoning is explained clearly, and merger investigations run smoothly. The PCO communicates with the senior management and advisers of some of the leading companies in the UK and globally, as well as officials from other national competition authorities.

Candidates applying for a post in phase 2 merger cases require strong project management skills in a legal or regulatory environment to ensure their merger investigations are timely delivered to consistent high-quality standards. In this role, PCOs can also contribute to the analysis of substantive features of those cases.  

In addition to case work, PCOs will help develop the CMA institutional practices, policy, and know-how. PCOs can follow, contribute to and develop expertise in areas of developing practice and know-how that are of interest to them. Working in diverse teams of varying seniorities, PCOs learn directly from experts in their fields, who are equally passionate about implementing competition law for the public good.

Applicants will have the opportunity to consider and discuss with current Mergers team colleagues the tasks that would suit them best and their preference to work in phase 1, phase 2 or in both stages of CMA merger cases. The Mergers team senior management will decide on the successful candidates’ placement based on their professional knowledge, experience, career development goals and the Merger team’s business needs.   

Job description

At present, the Mergers team’s pool of PCOs includes 55% of legally trained colleagues and 45% of colleagues with experience in a regulatory, project management and/or business-economic context. Colleagues at this grade usually join the Mergers team with 2-6 PQE in their respective professional fields.

Principal Case Officers (PCOs) of the Mergers team handle the CMA merger cases in all economic sectors, from retail shops to digital markets. PCOs work as part of multi-disciplinary teams of lawyers, economists and financial and business advisers in phase 1 and phase 2 merger investigations.

The PCO’s role combines several tasks which require analytical (legal, economic and/or business knowledge) and project management skills. Reporting to the Mergers management team, the PCO is the visible ‘face’ of the case team externally and the key driver (together with the economists allocated to each case team) responsible for delivering high-quality and robust merger investigation decisions to ensure healthy competition is maintained for the benefit of UK consumers, businesses and the economy.

PCOs allocated to Phase 1 typically lead two or more phase 1 merger cases at a time. In this role, PCOs use their legal, economic and/or business knowledge and expertise as well as their analytical and project management skills to ensure that issues are investigated fully, evidence is presented accurately, decision reasoning is explained clearly and merger investigations run smoothly. The PCO communicates with the senior management and advisers of some of the leading companies in the UK and globally, as well as officials from other competition authorities around the world.

PCOs allocated to phase 2 merger cases, primarily coordinate and project manage the work of large multi-disciplinary teams. In this role, PCOs can also contribute to the analysis of substantive features of those cases.

These tasks are often performed in the context of complex international merger control issues. In addition to case work, PCOs will contribute to developing the CMA’s institutional practices, policy, and know-how. PCOs can follow, contribute to and develop expertise in areas of developing practice and know-how that are of interest to them. Working in diverse teams of varying seniorities, PCOs learns directly from experts in their fields, who are equally passionate about implementing competition law for the public good.

The variety of PCO tasks in phase 1 and phase 2 merger cases suit professionals willing to develop their legal, economic or regulatory professional careers as well as those with a strong project management background in a regulatory, legal or economic context. At present, the Mergers team’s pool of PCOs includes 55% of legally-trained colleagues and 45% of colleagues with experience in a regulatory, project management and/or business-economic context. Colleagues at this grade usually join the Merger team with 2-6 PQE in their respective professional fields.

Delivery

·       Lead and/or project manage cases on a day-to-day basis, liaising with colleagues to ensure adherence to the timetable and statutory deadlines in phase 1 and / or phase 2. Develop influential relationships with key internal and external stakeholders and act as a lead point of contact for external parties.

·       Prepare and review documents for case delivery to achieve robust outcomes that are consistent with legislation, published CMA guidance, the established practice of the CMA, and best practice worldwide.

·       Draft correspondence and prepare and finalise a wide range of internal- and external-facing documents required during the merger investigations including interim orders, notices to parties, internal analyses to support decision making, reports, working papers, issues letters for parties and decisions.

·       Lead contributions to and, as appropriate, chair internal and external meetings in phase 1 merger cases. When project managing a phase 2 merger case, lead the organisational requirements to ensure the timely and successful outcome of the case project.  

·       Identify and proactively manage risks, taking action where necessary and escalating as appropriate.

Analysis

·       Request, consider and analyse critically the body of factual, legal, economic and other evidence necessary to assess the substantive outcome of a merger case in phase 1 merger cases.

·       When project managing a phase 2 merger case, analyse the flow of information and data received by the case team swiftly to ensure it is processed effectively and stored safely.  

·       Supported by the Mergers management team, work with the case economists to ensure that decisions are based on accurate, well-reasoned and evidence-based analysis.

·       In phase 1 merger cases, assess the impact of mergers on competition, often considering complex legal and economic issues, and present cases and recommendations at formal case review meetings and decision meetings.

Leadership

·       Manage the contributions of other team members in a way that makes the most of their specialist skills, knowledge and abilities.

·       Act as staff manager, as required, liaising with work managers to monitor work allocation, assisting in developing colleagues through performance management and identifying training needs.

·       Encourage a respectful working environment that promotes equality, diversity, and inclusiveness.

Other work to assist the Mergers team

·         Assist in the development of new practices and know-how within the wider CMA Mergers team.

·       Assist the Mergers team’s management, including on wider policy and strategic work; contribute and assist in the Mergers team’s policy projects.

·       Contribute, and encourage others to contribute, to the achievement of the CMA’s broader policy objectives and initiatives.

Person specification

  • A proven track record of
    • Working in merger control, competition enforcement, or other regulatory field; OR as a competition lawyer, economist or consultant with a good track record of advising on and executing complex merger control, or other competition law-related cases. (Lead criteria); and/or
  • Excellent project management skills in a legal or regulatory environment, in particular experience of successfully delivering projects working both autonomously and with multi-disciplinary teams and delivering results within challenging timeframes. (Lead criteria)
  • The ability to undertake complex analytical work, including experience of gathering, analysing and managing complex information from a variety of sources and presenting information and clear recommendations to a wide audience in an advisory or project management role. (Lead criteria)
  • Strong experience of working collaboratively, building relationships internally and externally, including with senior decision-makers and stakeholders.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including drafting legal and technical documents and reports for internal and external use designed for a wide variety of audiences.

Desirable:

  • Practical experience of UK and/or EU competition law, merger control, or regulatory law casework and/or legal qualification

Behaviours

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

  • Delivering at Pace
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Working Together
  • Seeing the Big Picture

Technical skills

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

  • Merger control, competition enforcement, or regulatory experience

As well as the interesting and varied work you’ll do to contribute to effective competition in the UK, and to ensure consumers get a good deal when buying goods and services, you’ll also benefit from:

  • An exceptionally generous pension scheme with a significant employer contribution and range of options, including a tax-free lump sum at the point of retirement and injury, ill-health and life assurance benefits
  • 25 days leave (increasing to 30 days over five years), plus 8 public holidays and an additional day off for the King’s birthday. In addition, you’ll be able to access a wide range of other types of leave as and when you need it, including generous maternity, paternity, shared parental leave and adoption options, as well as paid special leave for volunteering
  • Season ticket loans, cycle to work scheme, flu vaccinations and eye tests
  • Access to the Civil Service Sports & Leisure, giving discounted gym membership, high street discounts, free access to UK wide attractions and a free Tastecard
  • A range of wellbeing benefits, including an employee assistance programme, flexible working options and family friendly policies, regular networking events and professional learning opportunities at work

Any move to the CMA 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 you’re already a civil servant being appointed on level transfer, you’ll retain your existing terms, including annual leave. Where you are being promoted, however, you’ll receive the greater of a 10% pay increase or the new grade minimum. Applicants new to the civil service may be considered for appointment at a salary higher than the starting point indicated above, but not more than the advertised mid-point, depending on skills, knowledge, experience and qualifications.

The CMA, like many other organisations, have moved to a hybrid working model with a mix of office and home working. We believe this supports us to deliver our best work while allowing the flexibility to maintain balanced and healthy lives. Our staff work at least 50% of their time from their office location.

The CMA are fully committed to being an inclusive employer and ensuring equal opportunities. It is a priority to make our workforce as diverse as possible and we welcome applications from under-represented groups, including ethnically diverse people, people with a disability, and people with diverse gender identities.

The CMA is an accredited Disability Confident Employer. Disabled applicants meeting the minimum criteria for the job will be given the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities at an interview.

Selection process details

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

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a CV, personal statement and an online application form. Further details about application requirements are listed on the application form.

The selection process will comprise of the sift (CV & application review) and an interview. Arrangements for the interview will be enclosed in the invitation. 

Please note that interviews will be held in the CMA London Office or via MS Teams, if face-to-face is not possible. 

An initial sift based on criteria 1, 2 and 3 (Lead Criteria) may be held if a large number of applications are received. If your application progresses to a full sift, all elements of the essential criteria listed under Person Specification of the role profile will then be considered.

Please note that it is essential that your personal statement is aligned to provide evidence that you have the knowledge and experience for each of the following selection criteria (as included on the role profile) in your application:

  • Working in merger control, competition enforcement, or other regulatory field; OR as a competition lawyer, economist or consultant with a good track record of advising on and executing complex merger control, or other competition law-related cases. (Lead criteria); and/or
  • Excellent project management skills in a legal or regulatory environment, in particular experience of successfully delivering projects working both autonomously and with multi-disciplinary teams and delivering results within challenging timeframes. (Lead criteria)
  • The ability to undertake complex analytical work, including experience of gathering, analysing and managing complex information from a variety of sources and presenting information and clear recommendations to a wide audience in an advisory or project management role. (Lead criteria)
  • Strong experience of working collaboratively, building relationships internally and externally, including with senior decision-makers and stakeholders.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including drafting legal and technical documents and reports for internal and external use designed for a wide variety of audiences.

The advert will remain open for applications until 11:55pm on 2 March 2023.

There will be two rounds of sift and interviews as outlined below. Candidates are requested to make one application in either the first or second round.

The first sift will be between 24 and 27 January with interviews scheduled between 21 February and 3 March.

Candidate applications received before 11:55pm on 23 January will be included in the first sift.

The second sift will be between 6 and 8 March with interviews scheduled between 20 March and 31 March.

If your application is successful, you will be invited to attend an interview. You will be notified via email to log-in to your Civil Service Account and book your interview slot. You will be sent an email with full details of your arrangements for interview.


Arrangements for interview

The first part of the assessment will be a written exercise administered in advance of your interview for which preparation will be required.  Full details will be enclosed with the interview invite sent to shortlisted candidates.

The second part of the assessment will be a one hour panel interview which will be based on the Behaviours and Experience outlined in the role profile. The interview will begin with a short presentation based on the written exercise. 

Reasonable adjustments

We want to make sure no one is at a disadvantage during our recruitment process because of a disability, condition or impairment. To assist you with this, we will reduce or remove any barriers where possible and provide additional support where appropriate.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need during the recruitment process.

For example, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you are deaf, a Language Service Professional. You might also require additional time to complete a timed assessment or a sign language interpreter to support with the relaying of information.



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

Security

Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard 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)
  • 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.
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.
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 : Charlotte Warmington
  • Email : recruitment@cma.gov.uk

Recruitment team :

  • Email : recruitment@cma.gov.uk

Further information

If your application has not been treated in accordance with the Recruitment Principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should contact Recruitment@cma.gov.uk in the first instance. If you are not satisfied with the response you receive you can contact the Civil Service Commission http://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk.

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