43520 - Deputy Head of Economy Group

£52,119 - £76,000 (Salary will depend on location)
12 Months
London, Northern Ireland
Belfast , London
Grade 6
Grade 6
Fixed Term , Loan
Up to 2 years with the possibility of a third by mutual agreement
Full Time

We welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including groups currently underrepresented in our workforce and pride ourselves as being an employer of choice. To find out more about how we champion diversity and inclusion in the workplace, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity




Grade 6 – Deputy Head of Economy Group


1 Horse Guards Road, London, SW1A 2HQ (with occasional travel to Belfast) or Stormont House, Stormont Estate, Belfast, BT4 3SH (with occasional travel to London )


The post is offered on a two year loan/ secondment for existing civil servants and a two year Fixed Term Contract for external applicants with a possibility of an extension for a further year.


Existing Home Civil Service staff at Grade 6 or analogous grades on level transfer or at Band A on temporary promotion. External candidates with  comparable skills or experience.

Salary scale: £52,119 - £72,000 (A Recruitment and Retention Allowance is available for Belfast-based staff up to a maximum of £6,000 for Band 6, bringing the effective band minima up to £58,119. New entrants to the Civil Service are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band advertised for the respectivecations of the role.)

Inclusion and diversity

The Northern Ireland Office is committed to being an inclusive employer with a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from people from the widest possible diversity of backgrounds, cultures and experiences.

We particularly welcome applications from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates, as they are under-represented within the NIO at this level.

The Northern Ireland Office strives to be an inclusive employer and is recognised by its staff and externally as being an employer where Diversity and Inclusion are valued.

We hold a Diversity & Inclusion Charter Mark and are an accredited Disability Confident Leader organisation.

In March 2018 we won the award for Best Employer for Diversity & Equality in Northern Ireland (small employer category) in a Gala Award ceremony hosted by Legal-Island, a multi-award winning workplace compliance company based in Northern Ireland.

We have an active D&I network supporting colleagues through D&I Advocates, championed by our Directors.

We want all our people to feel valued for who they are and we are confident that you will find the NIO a warm, welcoming and inclusive place to work. 

What we do 


The Northern Ireland Office represents Northern Ireland interests at a UK Government level and UK Government interests in Northern Ireland.  We have a wide range of responsibilities, including: underpinning political stability in Northern Ireland; overseeing the Northern Ireland devolution settlement; leading on national security policy in Northern Ireland; addressing the legacy of Northern Ireland’s past; delivering elections and constitutional reform in Northern Ireland; playing a key role in rebalancing the NI economy; representing NI interests, including  on the border with Ireland, as the UK exits the EU.  Our small size and diverse portfolio create a stimulating, fast-paced and challenging working environment, with regular engagement with a range of Ministers and senior officials.  We support flexible working and have a modern, flexible IT system which helps enable this.


This role is located in the Economy Group - which aims to drive growth and prosperity in Northern Ireland, working with other Government departments, the NI Executive and wider stakeholders. This reflects the Government’s goals of strengthening the Union, levelling up, economic recovery following Covid-19, and the increasingly proactive stance the Department is taking on the economy.

The Economy Group leads on the UK Government’s strategy for the Northern Ireland economy. It influences public expenditure in Northern Ireland, managing the NIO’s policy relationships with the Treasury and the Northern Ireland Department of Finance. Increasingly it also drives forward the delivery of targeted UKG spending in Northern Ireland to help deliver on our economic objectives. These include delivery of City and Growth Deals, the New Decade, New Approach financial support package, the New Deal for Northern Ireland, the Shared Prosperity Fund, Levelling Up Fund and the Community Renewal Fund.

Role specifics

This is a newly created Grade 6 post which has been created to be a core leadership role which will provide strategic direction and ownership of the Department’s delivery of programmes, support the implementation of key funding streams and interventions to enable growth in Northern Ireland.

The successful candidate will take forward leadership of the UK Funds and Delivery teams within the Economy Group, directly line managing two Grade 7s and their respective teams, to effectively deliver on key priorities, outlined above. Engagement with stakeholders in Northern Ireland will be a key part of the success of the various funds and delivery of key strategic priorities relating to trade and investment, cyber, connectivity and growth; and your role will involve building strong relationships across government, with the Northern Ireland Executive, the business community, and others in Northern Ireland.

As well as overseeing the delivery of these funds and interventions, stakeholder engagement and relationship management, the postholder will play an important role in contributing to the Government’s broader economic strategy for Northern Ireland, representing the Department to senior stakeholders, deputising for the Deputy Director and working with the Deputy Director to develop Economy Group’s capability. This will also include taking a lead on providing wider corporate leadership and support within the Economy Group, including focusing on empowering others, coaching, promoting and championing learning and development opportunities for junior staff, and various wellbeing initiatives to continue fostering a joined-up approach and positive team culture.

From time to time, when they arise, the postholder will also lead on the Government’s response to economic shocks, supporting Ministers to deliver the most appropriate response.

The postholder will report to the Deputy Director, Economy.


If your application is successful, you will:

●        Lead teams in the Economy Group to deliver on key deliverables within the funding and delivery workstrands;

●        Provide wider team leadership and strategic direction, including facilitating join-up across the department on priority strands of work;

●        Work with cross-government partners, Northern Ireland Executive, and key stakeholders in Northern Ireland to build stronger relationships in Northern Ireland to support the delivery of the Government’s priorities for the NI economy and the levelling up agenda;

●        Work collaboratively with a range of stakeholders across Whitehall, the Northern Ireland Civil Service, and other external stakeholders in Northern Ireland, championing your team’s policy area and Government priorities;

●        Oversee and support cross-Whitehall delivery of key policies, including newly created funding streams, ensuring Northern Ireland considerations are properly reflected in strategy, delivery, and communications;

●        Provide clear, compelling and straightforward advice in writing and in person to ministers and senior officials;

●        Link up relevant work across the department, ensuring a consistent and clear voice is presented across Whitehall and externally across a range of interconnected issues;

●        Support your own professional development, promoting a culture in which talent and developmental opportunities are recognised and encouraged.


To be successful you must be able to demonstrate that you have:

  • Strong leadership skills and management experience;
  • Strong fundamental policy making and policy delivery skills;
  • Effective negotiation, collaboration and influencing skills; and
  • Strong written and oral communication to influence senior stakeholders.

Desirable Criteria:

It would be desirable, but not essential, for applicants to have one or more of the following:

●        An understanding of the political environment in Northern Ireland, including the devolution settlement;

●        Experience of working on economic policy issues or delivering grant programmes;

●        Experience of working on the delivery and project management of large scale projects;


As part of the application process you will be asked to upload a CV and personal statement of suitability. Your personal statement of suitability (maximum 1000 words) should outline how you meet the essential/desirable criteria.


Applications will be sifted on CV and Statement of Suitability.


The interview will be of a blended nature consisting of behaviours and experience based questions.

You will be assessed utilising the following success profiles behaviours at Grade 6 level during the selection process.

  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Leadership
  • Working Together
  • Delivering at Pace

More information on behaviours and success profiles can be found here.



Security clearance to (SC) level will be required for this post.


An eligibility sift will be carried out on the basis of the information contained in the application form.  It is therefore important that all applicants demonstrate in their application how and to what extent their behaviours are relevant to the above criteria.  Those candidates who do not clearly demonstrate that they meet the experience and behaviours will not be invited to interview.


The successful candidate will adopt the terms and conditions of the NIO for the length of their appointment.

Neither Detached Duty terms nor relocation costs will apply to this post.


Further information about the post may be obtained from Darragh McElroy (darragh.mcelroy@nio.gov.uk).


You can apply for this post through the Civil Service website at: civilservice.gov.uk.  Once logged onto the site go to the civil service jobs page and then search for jobs in the Northern Ireland Office where the application form can be found.

Additional information received after the closing date will not be considered.  Failure to provide sufficient information in support of an application prior to the closing date will not be considered as grounds for an appeal if an applicant is not shortlisted for interview.

Home Civil Service applicants who, because of disability, need assistance in completing the application form should contact MoJ Shared Services on 0845 010 3512.

All applications for employment are considered strictly on the basis of merit.

This job description should not be taken as constituting conditions of employment.

Please note that due to the high interest in NIO opportunities, feedback cannot be given if you are unsuccessful at sift stage. Feedback is available on request if unsuccessful following interview.


Further information about us

We are a small and friendly department of approximately 175 staff.  Due to our size we are able to offer staff more exposure to ministers and the opportunity to work on a far wider portfolio of responsibilities than might be the case in a larger department.  This creates an interesting, though often challenging, work environment.

Other Benefits

The NIO offers a pleasant, modern work environment which allows consideration of a range of flexible working arrangements which support a good work/ life balance. These include flexible/ alternative working patterns, part-time and job-share options.

Benefits include:

                interest-free season ticket and bicycle loans

                Reward & Recognition scheme

Guaranteed Interview Scheme

The Northern Ireland Office operates the Guaranteed Interview Scheme, details of which are attached to the application form for this post.

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. Those candidates who do not wish to remain on the reserve list should contact MoJ-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com to be removed from the reserve list. 

Further information on civil service careers can be found at  www.civil-service-careers.gov.uk

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.  

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. 

Please contact SSCL (Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@sscl.gse.gov.uk) in the first instance.

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:



Working Arrangements & Further Information

Some of MoJ’s terms and conditions of service are changing as part of Civil Service reform. The changes will apply to staff joining MoJ who are new to the Civil Service. Staff joining MoJ from other civil service employers will transfer onto the new MoJ terms if they are already on 'modernised' terms in their current post or onto 'unmodernised' MoJ terms if they are on 'unmodernised' terms at their current post. Details will be available if an offer is made.

Flexible working hours

The Ministry of Justice offers a flexible working system in many offices.


The MoJ offers a range of benefits:

Annual Leave

Annual leave is 25 days on appointment and will increase to 30 days after five years’ service.

There is also a scheme to allow qualifying staff to buy or sell up to three days leave each year. Additional paid time off for public holidays and 1 privilege day. Leave for part-time and job share posts will be calculated on a pro-rata basis.


The Civil Service offers a choice of pension schemes, giving you the flexibility to choose the pension that suits you best.


The Ministry of Justice is committed to staff development and offers an extensive range of training and development opportunities.


·         A range of ‘Family Friendly’ policies such as opportunities to work reduced hours or job share.

·         Access to flexible benefits such as voluntary benefits,retail vouchers and discounts on a range of goods and services.

·         For any moves across the Civil Service may have implications on your ability to carry on claiming childcare vouchers

·         Paid paternity, adoption and maternity leave.

·         Free annual sight tests for employees who use computer screens.


The opportunity to join employee-run networks that have been established to provide advice and support and to enable the views of employees from minority groups to be expressed direct to senior management. There are currently networks for employees of minority ethnic origin, employees with disabilities, employees with caring responsibilities, women employees, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees.

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. Should you feel that the recruitment process has breached the recruitment principles you are able to raise a formal complaint in the following order

1-    To Shared Service Connected Ltd (0845 241 5358 (Monday to Friday 8am - 6pm) or e mail Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com);

2-    To Ministry of Justice Resourcing (resourcing-services@justice.gov.uk);

3-    To the Civil Service Commission (details available here)

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.

Grading Structure Review

The Ministry of Justice is currently undergoing a review of posts which are currently graded at Band A to realign our grading structure with the majority of the wider Civil Service.

Posts advertised at Band A may be graded at either Grade 6 or Grade 7 once the review has taken place.  

Interview dates to be agreed by panel

17/05/2021, 23:55 hours.

If you require any assistance please call 0845 241 5359 (Monday to Friday 8am - 6pm) or e mail Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com Please quote the job reference - 43520.
Security Clearance (SC)

To apply for roles in MOJ you will need to confirm your employment history for at least 3 years prior to the date of application so that pre-employment checks (BPSS) can be undertaken. If you have spent significant time abroad (a total of 6 months in the past 3 years) you would be required to give a reasonable account of the reasons why. 

For some roles you will be required to successfully complete National Security Vetting at Counter Terrorism (CTC), Security Clearance (SC) or Developed Vetting (DV) level as a condition of appointment. To meet CTC/SC/DV requirements you will normally need to have been resident in the UK for at least 3/5/10 years prior to the date of application (The level of checks that are required are stated in the advert).

If you do not meet the above requirements, you may still be considered if, for example:

  • You've been serving overseas with HM Forces or in some other official capacity as a representative of HM Government
  • You were studying abroad
  • You were living overseas with parents

In such cases you will need to be able to provide referee cover for the period(s) of residence overseas. The duration of overseas residence and the country of abode will also be taken into account.

Success Profiles will enable a fairer and more inclusive method of recruitment by enabling us to assess the range of experiences, abilities, strengths, behaviours and technical/professional skills required for different roles. This flexible approach to recruitment focuses more on finding the right candidate for the specific role. To find out more about Success Profiles to support your application please click here for further guidance.

if you feel that your application has not been treated in line with the Civil Service Recruitment Principles, please contact SSCL (Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com) in the first instance

This Vacancy is closed to applications.