DE&S Business Administrator Apprenticeship Scheme

Ministry of Defence

Apply before 11:55 pm on Monday 30th January 2023



Reference number



Per annum (plus benefits)

Job grade


Contract type


Business area

MOD - Defence Equipment & Support

Type of role

Administration / Corporate Support

Working pattern


Number of jobs available



MoD Abbey Wood, Bristol, BS34 8JH

Job summary

At Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S), we're here to provide for the Armed Forces, as they serve our country all over the world. We support those on the front line by providing cutting-edge equipment and technology for land, sea, air and space. We deliver the kit the UK military needs to maintain advantage and stay protected, as they protect life at home and overseas.

You want to be an expert in your field one day. We want to help make it happen. Whichever area you join us in, you’ll discover new talents, pinpoint new ambitions, find a home among a diverse team – and be empowered to turn your gifts into an incredible career. Ready for real investment in your future? We’re developing tomorrow’s talent today.

Job description

What sets DE&S apart is the focus we put on you. We help you find your flair and then plan a flourishing career around what you love. And along the way, you’ll enjoy real rewards for the work you do, with competitive benefits and career progression. As a DE&S apprentice, you’ll find real support to reach your potential – so you can become a leader in your field.

As part of our team, you'll benefit from plenty of routes for development, access to specialist training and funding for professional qualifications, and a c.27% employer pension contribution. You’ll also have access to a wide range of employee networks, including the Women’s Inclusive Network, Race & Culture Network, Pride Network, Disability Network – and many more.

A range of apprenticeship opportunities have arisen within our forward-thinking Entry Talent Centre of Expertise here at DE&S based at Bristol Abbey Wood.

The DE&S Business Administrator Apprenticeship Scheme is an 18 to 20 month development programme focused around Business Administration roles across different areas of DE&S.

As a Business Administrator Apprentice at DE&S, you will gain work experience and develop a wide range of skills by rotating through a range of challenging and stimulating work placements across DE&S Business Support roles. At the same time, you will undertake academic training, so that, upon scheme completion, you will achieve a Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Business Administration, a nationally recognised qualification. You will achieve this through a blend of face-to-face, virtual tuition and e-learning and you will also be assigned a dedicated Talent Coach who will support you throughout the programme.

 The academic portion of the apprenticeship includes study in the following areas:

  • Understanding Organisations
  • Personal and professional development
  • Problem solving and decision making
  • Effective communication
  • Business documentation

Your hands-on experience will also be underpinned by MOD/DE&S specific training.

In addition to formal training, you will receive:

  • A dedicated Scheme Manager who will be responsible for coordinating your professional training and development
  • A Placement Supervisor who will oversee your day-to-day management and provide on the job development opportunities
  • An experienced college skills coach to provide support throughout your academic learning journey
  • Additional training opportunities to enhance your learning further

On successful completion of the scheme, you can expect to be placed into a permanent job at DE&S typically working with a range of contacts inside and outside of DE&S to enable the operational day-to-day running of our business and ensuring compliance with the requirements of being part of a Department of State.

We are seeking individuals who:

  • Are enthusiastic and show a positive and willing attitude
  • Would like to develop effective decision-making skills
  • Enjoy solving problems and identifying solutions
  • Would like to develop good written and verbal communication skills
  • Are keen on embracing change
  • Are willing to share information, knowledge, and skills
  • Have a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Are prepared to commit to an 18 to 20 month training programme
  • Are pro-active and willing to take responsibility for their own development and career progression

We’ll offer you challenging opportunities that will develop your career and offer you great rewards and an environment where results are recognised.

Join us and you will find this a very supportive and inclusive place to work.

Please note:

  • Applications are open to anyone over the age of 16 years at the start of the apprenticeship
  • Your duty station will be MoD Abbey Wood, Bristol, and you will be required to attend site regularly as required by your placement and / or your scheme.
  • Your training could be online or hybrid, combining online and classroom-based learning.

Because of the classification of some of the information related to certain projects, some work-based placements may be open to Sole UK Nationals only.

Person specification

It takes lots of different people and lots of different skill sets to keep the UK Armed Forces fully equipped and well supported.

To be successful with your application, we are looking for you to demonstrate your potential to succeed in a dynamic working environment. We’re here to help you find your speciality, so we hire for aptitude and train for skills.

We welcome applications from people of all backgrounds and are dedicated to creating a great place to work that reflects the diversity of the society we serve. To help us do this, we encourage applications from women, ethnic minorities, disabled people and people from LGBTQ+ communities. By bringing together different ideas, experiences, and perspectives, we can achieve our ambitions, together.

The Ministry of Defence is committed to providing a safe and healthy working environment for its staff which includes educating staff on the benefits of not smoking, protecting them from the harms associated with second-hand smoke and supporting those who want to give up smoking. Under the Tobacco-Free Working Environment (TFWE) programme, Smoking and the use of all tobacco products (including combustible and chewing tobacco products) will not be permitted anywhere, unless stated otherwise, in the Defence working environment by 31st December 2022. Those seeking, considering, or accepting employment should be aware of this requirement.

You must have the right of abode in the UK and have been ordinarily resident in the EEA (including other countries determined within the EEA or those with bilateral agreements), for at least the previous three years on the first day of learning.

As a result of the changes to the UK immigration rules which came into effect on 1 January 2021, the Ministry of Defence will only offer sponsorship for a skilled worker visa under the points-based system, where a role has been deemed to be business critical. 
The role currently being advertised has not been assessed as business critical and is therefore NOT open to applications from those who will require sponsorship under the points-based system. Should you apply for this role and be found to require sponsorship, your application will be rejected, and any provisional offer of employment withdrawn.


You must have, or will achieve by September 2023, the following qualifications:

Essential requirements:
• A minimum of two full GCSEs A* - C or Grades 4 – 9 (or equivalent) in English Language and Mathematics.

Further GCSEs at a grade of A*-C or 4-9 alongside relevant experience, demonstrating business administration skills, including through internships or placements would be desirable.

You are encouraged to apply with your predicted grades. Evidence of the above qualifications will be required as part of your pre-employment checks before a formal offer can be made.

Please note: prospective applicants who already have obtained an NVQ Level 3 in Business Administration or higher are not eligible for this apprenticeship.


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

  • Delivering at Pace
  • Working Together
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Making Effective Decisions

Alongside training and development, you’ll receive the following great benefits:

  • £20,049 Starting Salary
  • 25 days holiday a year, plus 1 day a year up to 30 days, 8 bank holidays and a day off for the King’s birthday
  • A market-leading employer pension contribution of around 27 percent, and recognition awards
  • Hybrid working (wherever possible) to support your work-life balance
  • Opportunity to work flexibility after 6 months
  • Use of our on-site gym, restaurant, and cafes.
  • A huge range of discounts including retail, sports, leisure, restaurants, gifts, days out, holidays, cinema, motoring, insurance, health care, gym memberships, and more

Selection process details

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

Initial Application – 3rd January – 29th January 2023

Create via your CS Jobs Account 

Full Application – 3rd January – 29th January 2023

Verbal reasoning, Numeracy, and Civil Service judgement online tests.

If you pass all three of the tests, you’ll then complete a full application and upload your CV, which must clearly demonstrate the following areas (which you will be assessed against in a CV sift):

  • Key Achievements.
  • Relevant Experience.
  • Applied Knowledge and Skills.

For additional guidance on writing a CV for DE&S, please click here 

Please allow sufficient time to complete the tests and the remainder of the application form.

Sift – January & February 2023

We will check that you meet any essential or eligibility criteria listed in this advert. Your CV will be assessed using a simple numerical scoring system.

 Assessment Centre – March 2023

The top scoring candidates will be invited to an assessment centre in Bristol. We will assess you through team exercises, an interview, and a presentation, aligned to our Behaviours above.

Provisional Offer – April 2023

Once all interviews have taken place, we will make provisional offers to the successful candidates and begin your pre-employment checks. Please be aware these checks can take several months to complete, however we will remain in contact throughout the process.

Formal Offer

Following successful completion of all pre-employment checks you can expect to receive a formal offer and contract at least 1 month before the scheme start date in September 2023.

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


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.

See our vetting charter.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK nationals only.

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 : DE&S Entry Talent Recruitment Team
  • Email :

Recruitment team :

  • Email :

Further information

Applicants should monitor their Civil Service Jobs application centre regularly for updates.

Some of MoD’s Terms and Conditions of Service (TACOS) changed from 3 February 2014. Those TACOS changes applied to Broader Banded and Skill Zone staff who were new recruits to MoD or who were appointed to a post on substantive promotion, progression or advancement. On the same basis, the TACOS for Departmental Retained Grades changed with effect from 01 September 2014.

All employees joining MOD who are new to the Civil Service will be subject to a 6-month probation period (unless otherwise advised) effective from the employment start date.

Following the introduction of the new Government scheme Tax Free Childcare, the Childcare Voucher scheme has now closed to new entrants. Applicants should be aware that any move across the Civil Service on or after 5 October 2018 may have implications on an employee’s ability to carry on claiming childcare vouchers. You can find out more about Tax Free Childcare at


Please be aware that the selection and interviewing of applicants is the responsibility of the Recruiting Line Manager (RLM) and not the Defence Business Services (DBS) Resourcing team. DBS do not play any part in the selection and interview process.

Therefore, if you are dissatisfied in any way with the selection process, you should raise a complaint in accordance with the guidance set out in the Further Information Guidance document attached.

If you are dissatisfied with the service you have received from DBS, or believe that DBS has failed to follow the recruitment process in line with the Civil Service Commission principles of selection for appointment on merit on the basis of Fair and Open competition, you can raise a formal complaint. by writing to DBS at the following address:

Complaints Management Team, Defence Business Services, Oak Building Mail Point #6109, MOD Abbey Wood North, Bristol, BS34 8QW

If after raising your complaint with DBS you remain dissatisfied you can complain directly to the Civil Service Commission at the following address:

Civil Service commission, Room G/8, 1 Horse Guards Road, London, SW1A 2HQ

Or by email:

Cabinet Office Fraud Checks

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 whose details are found to be held on the IFD will be refused employment

Civil Service Recruitment Principles

Please see the link below for the civil service recruitment principles.

To find out a bit more about what it’s like working for MOD, visit the Civil Service Careers Website

Please see the MOD Privacy Notice link below which describes how we will use your personal data, explains your rights and gives you information you are entitled to under Data Protection legislation.

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