Lead Solution (Programme) Architect

HM Revenue and Customs

Apply before 11:55 pm on Thursday 9th July 2020


Reference number



£62,789 - £70,779


Grade 6

Contract type


Business area


Type of role

Information Technology

Working pattern

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

Number of posts




About the job


HMRC is building a modern, digital tax administration and runs the biggest digital operation in Government, providing digital services for 45 million individuals and 4.9 million business customers. Our digital programme is multi-award winning and the envy of other government organisations.

This is an exciting time to join an organisation that probably doesn’t work how you’d imagine a government organisation would. Our blog tells you a bit more about what we do and how we do it.

We are undergoing a major transformation programme, which includes a major investment in digitisation. This means customers can do more for themselves online, in real time, on computers, tablets and smartphones therefore we are building a team of outstanding people who will create and run these new and improved technology services.

Here in HMRC’s Chief Digital & Information Group we’re increasingly delivering in-house through our growing network of digital delivery centres – hi-tech, state-of-the-art facilities across the UK.

We’re removing our dependence on data centres, as we increasingly virtualise our estate. We’re fundamentally restructuring the way we look after our IT and the way we work with partners across our ecosystem.

Chief Digital and Information Office set the technology direction for HMRC and deliver the high level design for all IT solutions. We are responsible for building and running HMRC IT services along with providing IT change and operational support.

Job description

As part of CDIO the Customs and International Trade Delivery Group is responsible for developing, delivering and supporting IT solutions for those business areas which manage HMRC’s Customs, Excise and International Trade activities. This work includes the analysis of business requirements and the design, build, test and live release of new IT projects, as well as the ongoing support and maintenance of live IT applications.

The C&IT Delivery Area is responsible for the end to end service management and development of over 100 separate services from the generation of Trade Statistics, to the administration of Customs and Excise duties.

C&IT are at the heart of IT in HMRC and lead and influence across Government, where we are premier deliverers of IT, enabling Government to deliver its strategies. We are proud of what we have achieved.

We have a highly capable and agile workforce working at pace and responding quickly, being both flexible and scalable in our approach. We demonstrate professional and technical excellence in all that we do.

This is an exciting opportunity to join Customs and International Trade Delivery Area where you will be supporting a large scale and radical IT transformation that will have a profound impact for both customers and staff and the UK as a whole and the opportunity to transform development within a unique area of HM Government.

As part of CDIO, the Customs and International Trade Delivery Group (C&IT DG) is responsible for developing, delivering and supporting IT solutions for those business areas which manage HMRC’s Customs, Excise and International Trade activities. The C&IT DG are responsible for the end to end service management and development of over 100 separate services from the generation of Trade Statistics, to the administration of Customs and Excise duties.

Within C&IT we operate a Guild/Tribe structure to ensure that we provide skilled resources to enable us to meet the needs of our customers in an Agile way helping to drive high levels of collaboration and innovation. Guilds provide a permanent organisation construct that are set up to bring together people who share technical, functional and professional skills. The Guild responsibility will be to define the technical standards and tools that its members will use. It also ensures that members of the Guild continually improve their skills so that technical skills remain current, are aligned to HMRC/CDIO strategy and in-step with IT industry developments.


A lead technical architect works with multiple projects or teams on problems that require broad architectural thinking. They are responsible for leading the technical design of systems and services and can justify and communicate their design decisions.

You will assure other services and system quality, making sure the technical work fits into the broader strategy for government. They explore the benefits of cross-government alignment. They provide mentoring within teams and provide leadership to other architects.

• Demonstrates an understanding of strategic issues and is an authority on the systems development life-cycle and typical problems associated with the implementation of information systems, from initial concept through development and implementation to operation and support.

• Has detailed practical knowledge of the organisation’s IT infrastructure and software development and maintenance methods, tools and techniques. Is conversant with the organisation’s IT strategy, policies and standards.

• Has a sound knowledge of risk assessment, organizational change, configuration management, reliability and safety methods and the use of metrics.

• Is skilled in project risk management.

• Communicates persuasively and effectively.

• Demonstrates high standards of professional behaviour in dealings with clients, colleagues and staff, and demonstrable ability to manage a consultancy assignment with a team of consultants.

• Has an extensive knowledge of at least one specific area and a broad understanding across a wide field along with a record of applying such knowledge successfully in a variety of situations.

• Demonstrates the ability to take significant responsibility, shows skill in the management of change and can handle contacts of all types and at all levels.

• Is able to make sound and far reaching decisions alone on major issues and to take full responsibility for them on a technical or managerial basis.

They will also have superb communication skills and judgement, enabling them to regularly act on behalf of their Deputy Director and Director.


We are looking for individuals who will be responsible for some or all of the following:

• Providing leadership and technical direction to ensure the timely resourcing of IT Change Initiatives within the programme.

• Overseeing the creation and quality of solution designs; ensuring team are fully aligned to the ongoing Governance of end to end IT Solutions.

• Engage and influence Business Stakeholders, IT Suppliers and other parts of CDIO to support IT transformation.

• Ensuring IT designs are fit for purpose, fully meet business requirements, deliver value for money and stays in sync with our Architecture Blueprints.

• Create, refine and challenge patterns, standards, policies, handle risks, roadmaps and vision statements.

• Actively contribute to staff engagement and wellbeing, through a clear vision and environment that values the contribution of everyone.

Essential Criteria

• Validated leadership experience with the ability to empower support and develop staff and enable them to achieve the highest performance standards ensuring that HMRC develops and retains a strong capability in IT Architecture.

• Excellent collaborative skills, including direct experience of influencing senior colleagues (i.e. at director level or above) and should translate technical concepts.

• A broad IT background, specifically experience of working in a senior IT role in a large scale multi source development environment with a wide range of delivery partners.

• Able to identify architecture sensitivities and cost drivers and work with partners to manage their impacts and take ownership for making key decisions at pace.

• The ability to work with business and technology partners to translate business problems into technical designs.

• Experience of engaging at a strategic level and playing a key role in setting organisational objectives, influencing policy and leading on technical and business change.

Technical Experience – Desirable Criteria

(Demonstrable experience in one or more of the following is highly desirable)

• Experience handling and deploying on Cloud based platforms
• Document HLD/LLD Designs to include:
• Environment Requirements
• Networking
• Operating Systems
• Hardware/Virtual Machines
• Software
• Databases
• Support tools e.g. logging, monitoring, backup, patching
• Encryption e.g. TLS, HashiCorp Vault
• Knowledge of mainframe and or COBOL beneficial
• Challenging attitude to the status quo and have the proper skills to communicate and drive the solution
• Demonstrable ability to think at abstract, strategic levels and relate to practical needs of software engineers. Analyse complex multi-dimensional requirements and map to technical design and architecture
• Experience with continuous integration, automated deployment, testing and the relevant tooling i.e. Puppet, Chef, Jenkins
• Solid understanding of factors influencing performance and ability to tune systems to achieve best possible performance and capacity
• Breadth of experience with strengths in application programming, security, operations, networking and APIs and API design


• Learning and development tailored to your role
• An environment with flexible working options
• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
• A Civil Service pension

If you are applying for a role in an office within a regional center location or a transitional or specialist site, then the following may apply: Daily Travel Assistance will be available for this role, provided the successful applicant is a current HMRC employee and meets the eligibility requirements outlined in the department’s Daily Travel Assistance guidance.

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 security check.

Selection process details

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a CV and statement of suitability. Further details around what this will entail are listed on the application form.

Please ensure that your statement of suitability is no more than 750 words. Please provide details on how you meet the Essential criteria for this role, by stating what you have done and how you went about it, ensuring that you give examples of Leadership, Delivering at Pace, Making Effective Decisions etc.

An initial sift of your CV and statement of suitability will be conducted against the Essential Criteria. If you successfully complete this stage of the process your application will be progressed to the next stage.

If a large number of candidates are successful at the sift stage then we will invite the candidate to a pre-recorded video interview and then if successful they will be invited to a second interview which will take place over Teams or Skype.

The applicants with the best skills and experience will be invited to interview, where you will be required to provide evidence as to how you meet the above essential criteria and technical requirements. Interviews may include an additional assessment exercise or presentation exercise. Please note that your CV MUST demonstrate evidence of the Essential Criteria for you to be progressed to the next stage.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview. Sift and interview dates to be confirmed.

Further Information:

Any move to HMRC will mean you will no longer be able to carry on claiming childcare vouchers. You will however have access to the governments Tax Free Childcare scheme.

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

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.

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. 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 on your behalf. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstance 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.

HMRC transformation:

In November 2015, HMRC announced the next step in our ten-year modernisation programme to create a tax authority fit for the future, committing to high-quality jobs and the creation of new regional centres serving every region and nation in the UK. We set out our plans to consolidate into 13 large, modern offices, equipped with the digital infrastructure and training facilities needed to build a more highly-skilled workforce. These offices will be located in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Newcastle, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Croydon and Stratford. 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. In addition, our Welsh language service has people in specialist roles located in Porthmadog, as well as Cardiff. If you are recruited into an office that is not one of these locations, you will be expected, subject to HMRC’s applicable policies, to move to one of these locations in the future. In some cases this will be via a transitional site. If you are not a current civil servant, you will not be eligible for financial assistance for your move to the regional centre or a transitional or specialist site. If you are a current HMRC employee and you joined HMRC through an advert that was advertised on or after 11/01/2017, you will not be eligible for financial assistance for your move to the regional centre or a transitional or specialist site. This is in line with the terms of your original appointment to HMRC. For more information please contact the vacancy holder.

Terms and Conditions:

Some of HMRC Terms and Conditions of employment changed on 1st May 2013, these will apply to people who are new recruits to HMRC or who take a new job in HMRC on promotion. The document attached to this advertisement provides more information on the changes we made, please note this is not a full list of HMRC's terms and conditions. If you need to discuss how these changes might affect you, please contact the vacancy holder. For further information on terms and conditions please visit https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs/about/recruitment#annual-leave


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.

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

Reasonable adjustment:

If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

Contact Government Recruitment Service via hmrcrecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk 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

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.

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.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :
Name :  Gayathri Shyamsundar
Email :  gayathri.shyamsundar@hmrc.gov.uk
Recruitment team :
Email :  hmrcrecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk

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: http://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk/civil-service-recruitment/complaints/

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