Grade 7 Policy Lead - Digital Directorate

Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government

Closing date: 21 Mar 2019

Reference number



£50,642 (London), £45,938 (National)


Grade 7

Contract type


Business area


Type of role


Working pattern

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


37 hours per week

Number of posts



City of Westminster, London, SW1P 4DF

About the job

Job description

The Digital Directorate is seeking an experienced policy official with experience working on digital, data and technology policy to join a passionate new team in central government.

You’ll work with the Digital Land team, corporate office and Local Digital Collaboration Unit.

The digital directorate aims to house more people by making geospatial, planning and other data need for building available to property developers, property technology companies, individuals and other companies, to increase the housing supply.

At the Local Digital Collaboration Unit, our goal is to help UK local authorities to overcome common hurdles in their efforts to make the most of technology when delivering digital services. We’ll do this by helping cohorts of local authorities to co-design and deliver some common products that make local services better for users and cheaper to deliver.

The Digital Land team is working to improve land and housing data for the emerging proptech sector.

This is a key role in a quickly growing directorate. The Local Digital Policy Lead will combine deep understanding of policy-making with a strong understanding of the principles of the Local Digital Declaration. S/he will help the team collaborate with stakeholders in other government departments in developing and articulating our policy position, and in preparation for the next Spending Review.

Main responsibilities

• Guide the directorate - especially Local Digital team & Digital Land in their dealings with other government departments.

• Lead on delivering the policy documents and spending review contributions we develop with and on behalf of the local public sector.

• Work closely with the teams to understand how we plan to deliver products that support the move to open standards, and work with us to reflect this mission in policy and Spending Review bids.

• Lead on policy questions and ministerial briefings

• Blog about our work and contribute to the ‘working in the open’ communities we’re contributing to.

Skills and experience

It is essential that you have:

• At least 2 years experience working for local government on service transformation, or in a role that has exposed you to data driven and user-centred service design

• An understanding of the technology involved in delivering transactional digital services

• At least 4 years experience working in policy development or related roles

• Strong understanding of the UK central government policy development process

• Experience communicating the process of policy development to a wide range of audiences - internal and external - and experience using online engagement platforms to promote your work and solitic diverse feedback

• Strong track record in building relationships across organisational boundaries, and delivering collaborative projects or policies

• Excellent writing skills, with the ability to write for non-technical online audiences

It is desirable that you have:

• A good understanding of local digital sector stakeholders


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

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

Technical skills

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

  • Skills and experience listed above



Civil Service pension schemes may be available for successful candidates.


Transfers across the Civil Service on or after 4 October 2018:

Staff transferring from other government departments to a new PAYE scheme on any type of move other than TUPE/COSOP will lose their access to salary sacrifice for childcare. However, MHCLG do have childcare voucher scheme for under-5s and have a staff benefits scheme offering cycle to work and discounted shopping vouchers.

For further information about the benefits available to MHCLG employees, please see the attached Candidate Pack.

Things you need to know


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 counter-terrorist check.

Nationality statement

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules.

If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.

Selection process details

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

MHCLG want to bring in and bring on a diverse workforce at all levels.

The application system is designed to remove as much bias as possible from the recruitment system – this means that a hiring manager does not know your name, your details, see your whole application in one go (or have your CV at review stage unless stated otherwise).

Your answers are randomised and chunked up. This means that each assessor views sets of responses to questions for example all candidates’ responses to ‘Seeing the Big Picture’ rather than seeing a candidate’s full application. The science behind this is that recruitment can be subject to ordering and fatigue effects and we want to reduce this as much as possible.

Most of our campaigns utilise multiple assessors and so it is possible that each of your answers would be viewed by different assessors.

When writing your application, remember:
• that the assessor won’t be reading your answers sequentially.
• do not assume that the same assessors will have read all of your answers.
• If talking about something in your first answer, make sure that you write the second answer as if you had not written the first (and so on!)

At sift, we will be assessing:

• Communicating and Influencing (lead behaviour)

• Seeing the Big Picture

• Making Effective Decisions

• Working Together

• Experience - Briefly describe your experience as a policy lead working with a multidisciplinary digital team.

There is a 250 word limit per question.

In the event that we receive a large number of applications, we may conduct an initial sift based on the lead behaviour.

The interview will be of a blended nature consisting of behaviour, experience, technical and strength based questions as listed in the advert. The strength based questions will require natural responses from the candidates.

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

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.


Candidates in their probationary period are eligible to apply for vacancies within this department.

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 equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Terms & Conditions

If you are already an MHCLG member of staff; and are interested applying for this role on a level transfer basis (ie at the same grade), please search for ‘apply for an internal vacancy’ on our intranet page for details on how to apply for this role.

Please note that existing MHCLG staff currently within their probation period are required to complete their probation period within their current role before taking up a new appointment if successful.

• The salary for this role is £50,642 (London) or £45,938 (National), in exceptional circumstances, a salary of up to £1,000 higher might be available.

• For existing civil servants, the usual policy on level transfer and promotion will apply and is non-negotiable.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

Name: Lindsey Dodd

Sift/interview dates and location

Sifting is envisaged to take place from 22/03/2019 with interviews provisionally scheduled for W/C 01/04/2019 at 2 Marsham Street, London.

Further information

Reserve list

In the event that we identify more appointable candidates than we currently have posts available, we will hold applicant details on a reserve list for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made. This may include roles at a lower grade. Candidates placed on a reserve list will be informed of this. Due to the length of time CTC checks can take, our HR Shared Services team will contact reserve list candidates for London based roles to commence CTC checks. Those candidates who do not wish to remain on the reserve list should contact to be removed from the reserve list.

Important note

Successful candidates for roles based in our 2 Marsham Street building must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is counter-terrorist check and the process can take up to 8 weeks to complete.

You are therefore required to complete the attached Annex A form (PART A ONLY) and either email the signed version directly to Alternatively, you can post the completed form to MHCLG HR, Ground Floor, Rosebrae Court, Woodside Ferry Approach, Birkenhead, CH41 6DU. This will be processed in cases only where the candidate should be successful in applying for the post. The remainder will be securely destroyed.

Please note that successful candidates will need to pass the CTC security checks – this requires you to have been resident in the UK for the past 3 years. Please refer to the attached document “MHCLG Notes on Security Clearance” for further information on Counter Terrorism Clearance (CTC). Thank you.

Candidates should also note that with effect from 1st August 2018 the department will also check all applicants who are successful at interview, against the Internal Fraud Database (IFD) held by the Cabinet Office. In accordance with the Civil Service Internal Fraud Policy, any applicant who is included on the IFD will be refused employment by MHCLG. Please see detail on attached Internal Fraud Database document.

Follow this link to apply:

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