Senior User Researcher - Experimentation

HM Revenue and Customs

Apply before 11:55 pm on Friday 1st July 2022



Reference number



£52,598 - £59,294


Grade 7

Contract type


Business area

HMRC - CDIO - Chief Technology and Design Officer

Type of role

Information Technology

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Part-time, Compressed Hours

Number of posts



Bristol, Edinburgh, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Telford, Worthing


At HMRC we are committed to creating a great place to work for all our colleagues; an inclusive and respectful environment that reflects the diversity of the society we serve.

We want to maximise the potential of everyone who chooses to work for us and we offer a range of flexible working patterns and support to make a fulfilling career at HMRC accessible to you.

Diverse perspectives and experiences are critical to our success and we welcome applications from all people from all backgrounds with the experience and skills needed to perform this role.

As a HMRC Senior Quantitative User Researcher, you will have the unique opportunity to work on some of the largest digital transformation programmes undertaken in Government and other sectors. You will ensure a good standard is maintained and developed for the optimization and experimentation strategy across HMRC.

As a Senior Quantitative User Researcher, you will plan and help coordinate user research and performance analyst activities on complex multichannel services.

You will work on a multidisciplinary team including developers and other quant focused user researchers to provide support across HMRC for experimentation. You will help upskill colleagues in conducting good quality experimentation and quantitative research and ensure a high quality of work is produced by scrum teams across HMRC.

This is an exciting time to join the organisation and you will help shape how experimentation and optimization is conducted in HMRC. Here is a blog that shows an example of the types of experiments we have done in HMRC

Job description

As a Senior Quantitative User Researcher in our team, you will be:

• Planning, designing, building and analysing a range of quantitative research activities to support the design, development and continuous improvement of complex government services.

• Carrying out a wide range of experimentation methods, such as, A/B, A/Bn, multivariate, discontinuity testing and parallel testing.

• Leading colleagues in developing clear and actionable findings, including working closely with analytics colleagues to create a rich picture of user behaviour that informs an experimentation road map.

• Communicating findings to the wider organisation to improve standards and patterns that all of HMRC can benefit from.

• Working closely with product managers, designers and developers to turn research findings into stories and actions that lead to valuable product and service features.

• Aligning user research activities with wider plans to inform service proposition.

• Building user centered and data driven practices in new and larger teams.

• Assessing services to ensure they meet the Service Standard.

• Mentoring and guiding more junior user researchers to assure and improve research practice.

• Contributing to the wider user research community by helping them become more data driven and use quantitative approaches where appropriate.


Essential criteria

You should be able to demonstrate:

• Experience managing an experimentation or optimization program.

• Experience of advocating for data driven change and engaging skeptical colleagues and stakeholders.

• Experience of helping teams use insight and data to develop an experimentation roadmap.

• Experience using tools like optimizely or google optimize to build and run experiments (A/B tests) including the creation of metrics.

• Experience in using a range of quantitative and qualitative methods with emphasis on quantitative methods, such as, A/B testing, multivariate, survey design, google analytics or hotjar.

• Proven experience in meeting ambitious deadlines and delivering high-quality work on schedule, including quickly turning around research plans and outputs in different formats.

• Proven experience of introducing new user research methods into a team (especially experimentation), and guiding colleagues in the choice and effective application of research methods.

• A good understanding of the social and technological context for government services, and experience of aligning user research activities to help teams understand changing user behaviour.

• Evidence of you balancing the user and business needs to improve products.

You will also need:

• A degree in decision science, data analytics, neuroscience, data science, computer science, statistics or related disciplines, or equivalent professional experience.

• Exceptional research and analysis skills, (e.g. designing, conducting, and analysing data and information from different research methodologies and databases)

• Excellent communication, presentation and interpersonal skills; the ability to communicate complex concepts clearly and persuasively across different audiences and varying levels of the organisation.

• Strong analytical skills, excellent attention to detail and good business judgement.

• Enthusiasm for coaching and mentoring of team members.

Desirable criteria

Ideally you will also have experience in conducting research with people:

• SQL experience

• Splunk experience

• Javascript, html and CSS for metric and A/B test variant creation

• Experience forecasting ROI or impact of experiments

And have:

• A relevant postgraduate qualification (Data science, Computer Science, Neuroscience, Psychology, Statistics or related quantitative field)

• Understanding of the Government Service Standard and GDS Service Manual

• The flexibility to work in a fast-changing environment and ambiguous situations

• Experience guiding and mentoring junior team members

• Knowledge or experience of working in an agile delivery environment.

Technical skills

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

  • Research Skills
  • Analysis and synthesis
  • User centred and agile practices
• Learning and development tailored to your role

• An environment with flexible working options

• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity

• A Civil Service pension

Team members that are moving offices as a result of the Locations Programme will be entitled to a Moves Adjustment Payment for three years where they incur additional costs. This is calculated based on the difference between the costs of travelling to and from the new and old office, over a weekly period. You will get more detail on this as part of targeted locations move communications.

Find more about HMRC benefits in 'Your little extras and big benefits handbook' for further information or visit Thinking of joining the Civil Service


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 Experience and Technical skills.
As part of the application process you will be asked to complete:

• Your CV

• A personal statement, which should demonstrate how you meet the user research skills ensuring you give examples relating to your professional experience as a user researcher, referring to the essential and desirable criteria above (1000 words max).

More information about the competencies and technical skills can be found at:

Things you need to know:

We would also like you to bring a portfolio to showcase the work you have done to the interview.

Your CV is all about summarising your skills, knowledge and experience; your portfolio expands upon it by taking a deeper look at all those strengths. A portfolio could include summaries of projects, accomplishments, skills and samples of work that provide evidence of what you have done.

We will ask you to complete a short user research exercise before the interview. During the interview we will also ask questions that let you demonstrate your experience and technical skills relevant to the role.

Sift and Interview dates to be confirmed.

Please take extra care to tick the correct boxes in the eligibility sections of your application form. We understand mistakes sometimes happen but if you contact us later than two working days (Monday-Friday) before the vacancy closes, we will not be able to reopen your application for you. The inbox to contact is: Use subject line to insert appropriate wording eg Please re-open my application - 215296 & vacancy closing date 1st July 2022.

Security Update

If you are successful and transferring from another Government Department, we will carry out a check of your identity, nationality, and immigration status (including the right to work in the UK) and a criminal record check before confirming your appointment.

Successful candidates must pass a Disclosure and Barring Security Check/Disclosure Scotland Please note that HMRC have an exemption under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, which enables us to make enquiries about both unspent and spent convictions.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service /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

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.

HMRC transformation

HM Revenue and Customs is currently going through an exciting ten-year transformation programme to create a tax authority fit for the future. As part of this, we are committed to providing high-quality jobs and giving employees a great place to work, whichever location you work from.

HM Revenue and Customs has made significant progress with its plans to locate in 13 large, modern, flexible offices, equipped with high-speed digital infrastructure supporting improved customer service and compliance activity. These collaborative workspaces will enable smarter working and great training and development facilities, allowing for the sharing of expertise, local training, promotion, and provide great ongoing career development opportunities.

These offices will be located in central locations in the following towns and cities close to accessible transport links: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Newcastle, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Croydon and Stratford.

In addition, there will also be a small number of specialist sites where the work cannot be done anywhere else, in Gartcosh (near Glasgow), Telford, Ipswich, Worthing and Dover, as well as our headquarters in central London. What’s more, our Welsh language service has people located in Porthmadog, as well as Cardiff.

We are letting you know about our future plans because if you are recruited into an office that is not one of these locations, you will be expected, subject to HM Revenue and Customs applicable policies, to move to one of these locations in the future. In some cases, this will be via one of our nine transitional sites.

For more information please contact the vacancy holder.

Terms and Conditions

We really hope you decide to apply for this role. If you’re successful you need to know that in February 2021 members of recognised trade unions (ARC and PCS) voted to approve a pay and contract reform offer. This means that HMRC will adopt new terms and conditions for all colleagues as part of a multi-year pay deal and contract offer, the pay deal period is 01 June 2020 – 31st May 2023 and terms and conditions changes take place from the 01 June 2021 onwards. These terms will apply to colleagues who already work in HMRC and if you join us, it will apply to you too. We’ve put together a summary of the key changes that will be made and you can find this attached to the Job Advert.


If you are currently working for an OGD and would like to consider the impact on your pay when joining HMRC, please see the attached document "Pay on Transfer from OGD" for further information. (Please note the attached document could also be called “Combined T&C and OGD Pay English”)

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

Further Information

Customer facing roles in HMRC require the ability to converse at ease with members of the public and provide advice in accurate spoken English and/or Welsh where required. Where this is an essential requirement this will be tested as part of the selection process.

A reserve list may be held for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made.

Any move to HMRC 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 here

HMRC welcomes applications from those who need to work a more flexible arrangement and will agree to requests where possible, taking into account our operational and customer service needs. We can’t guarantee that we can meet all requests to work flexibly, as agreement will be subject to business ability to accommodate, and any request to work a more flexible arrangement should be made prior to your acceptance of the provisional offer.

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

Please note that this role is unsuitable for contractual homeworkers due to the nature and/or requirements of the role.

Reasonable adjustment

We want to make sure no one is put 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. Please see our Disability Matters: How we can support you during our selection process booklet for more details.

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.
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 : Becky Dominick
  • Email :

Recruitment team :

  • Email :

Further information

Appointment to the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. You have the right to complain if you feel a department has breached the requirement of the Recruitment Principles. In the first instance, you should raise the matter directly with the department concerned. If you are not satisfied with the response, you may bring your complaint to the Commission. For further information on bringing a complaint to the Civil Service Commission please visit their web pages:

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