83101 - Policy Advisor

The national salary range is £32,827 - £35,678. London salary range is £37,174 - £40,403. Your salary will be dependent on your base location
12 Months
London, Scotland
Edinburgh , London
DOVER HOUSE LONDON, SW1A 2AU, Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland EDINBURGH, EH3 7HW
Full Time

Job Title     Policy Advisor, Scotland Office

Grade    HEO
Salary     The national salary range is £32,827 - £35,678. 

London salary range is £37,174 - £40,403. 
Your salary will be dependent on your base location

Team, Business Area and Location    This role sits within the Policy Division of the Scotland Office. This role can be carried out at either Scotland Office locations at Dover House, London, SW1A 2AU or Queen Elizabeth House, Edinburgh, EH8 8FT.

Manager of Vacancy    Rebecca Tremlett (rebecca.tremlett1@ukgovscotland.gov.uk)

Job description    

The Scotland Office supports the Secretary of State in promoting the best interests of Scotland within a stronger United Kingdom. It ensures Scottish interests are fully and effectively represented at the heart of the UKG (UKG), and the UKG’s responsibilities are fully and effectively represented in Scotland.

The role sits within the Policy Division of the Scotland Office and can be based in either Edinburgh or London. 

The Policy Division is made up of four teams: Strategic Policy and Co-ordination Team; Foreign Affairs and Defense Team; City Deals and Levelling Up Team and the Policy Team. It is expected this role will sit within the Policy Team, which is further divided into small teams with each team leading on specific policy area priorities. As part of the role, you will work within the team responsible for UKG policy interests in areas such as rural affairs (including, but not limited to, agriculture and fisheries), health, higher education, and culture policy. There is also scope to work collaboratively across the division, as UKG policy commitments dictate, on areas such as innovation and AI policy.

This role is likely to focus heavily on policy areas in the public services space, including considering issues from a UKG perspective that may impact on health, culture and higher education sectors in Scotland. You will also support Ministers in leading engagements with these sectors at events and roundtables.  

The role presents an interesting opportunity to both influence UKG policy to the benefit of Scotland, and to understand Scottish Government priorities from a UKG perspective,  considering where the UKG can add value within the boundaries of the constitutional settlement. The team is headed by a Grade 7 and works closely with other Scotland Office Divisions, as well as lead UKG departments and the other Territorial Offices.  The team engages closely with key stakeholders, managing and developing relationships to inform Scotland Office positions.

We are looking for individuals who will bring positive energy, creativity and collaboration to the team. You should be policy curious and able to develop productive relationships across UKG, with external stakeholders and the Scottish Government and its agencies. You will ensure Scotland Office Ministers are kept up to date with key activities and initiatives in Scotland and support Ministers and other UKG departments on opportunities to promote UKG policy in Scotland. Given the size of the department this role offers the unique opportunity to work closely with both Ministers and Special Advisors.

Key responsibilities    

This is a  fast paced, high output and varied role, including, but not limited to:

●    Providing policy advice, analysis, and support to the Secretary of State, Ministers and Special Advisors on your relevant policy areas;

●    Working with other Government departments to influence, develop and implement plans to deliver UKG business in Scotland and ensure policy developed in Whitehall supports needs and opportunities across Scotland;

●    Represent the Scotland Office in Whitehall and externally at meetings, working groups, events and with key stakeholders.

Person Specification (essential/desirable)    

Essential criteria
●    Ability to prepare clear and succinct policy advice, analysis, recommendations and briefings to Government Ministers, Special Advisors and senior colleagues.

●    Ability to manage and respond appropriately to Ministerial and official correspondence and Government write-rounds.

●    Ability to build close working relationships with Ministers and Senior colleagues

●    Effective communication and networking skills to secure confidence with those you are engaging with. 

●    Experience of working in a fast-paced environment, with high levels of personal autonomy and a self-starter attitude.

Desirable criteria
●    Demonstrable experience of working across more than one policy area.

●    Knowledge of the Scottish political landscape and the Devolution Settlement.  

Working Arrangements & Further Information

The MoJ offers Hybrid Working arrangements where business need allows. This is an informal, non-contractual form of flexible working that blends working from your base location, different MoJ sites and / or from home (please be aware that this role can only be worked in the UK and not overseas). Some roles will not be suitable for Hybrid Working. Similarly, Hybrid Working will not suit everyone’s circumstances. Arrangements will be discussed and agreed with the successful candidate(s) and subject to regular review.

For nationally advertised roles, the successful candidate(s) will be appointed to a MoJ office location, which may include their nearest Justice Collaboration Centre or Justice Satellite Office. This will be discussed and agreed on the completion of pre-employment checks.

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.

MoJ candidates who are on a specialist grade, will be able to retain their grade on lateral transfer.

All candidates who are currently in receipt of Mark Time / Pay Protection should ensure they are familiar with the new policy on permanent and temporary promotion which can be found on the employee intranet.

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.


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.


  • 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 moves to or from another employer or moves across the Civil Service this can have implications on your eligibility to carry on claiming childcare vouchers. You may however be eligible for alternative government childcare support schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. More information can be found on GOV.UK or Childcare Choices. You can determine your eligibility at https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/.
  • Paid paternity, adoption and maternity leave.
  • Free annual sight tests for employees who use computer screens.

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

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As a Disability Confident employer, MoJ are committed to providing everyone with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills, talent and abilities, by making adjustments throughout all elements of the recruitment process and in the workplace. MoJ are able to offer an interview to disabled candidates who meet the minimum selection criteria, except in a limited number of campaigns.

You will be able to request reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process within the application form. If you need additional help completing the application form, please contact the SSCL Recruitment Enquiries Team.

We encourage applications from people from all backgrounds and aim to have a workforce that represents the wider society that we serve. We pride ourselves on being an employer of choice. We champion diversity, inclusion and wellbeing and aim to create a workplace where everyone feels valued and a sense of belonging. To find out more about how we do this visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity.

Expected W/c 29th January 2024

22/01/2024, 23:55 hours.

If you require any assistance please call 0345 241 5359 (Monday to Friday 8am - 6pm) or e mail Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com Please quote the job reference - 83101.

For questions regarding the post please contact Rebecca Tremlett- rebecca.tremlett1@ukgivscotland.gov.uk

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

We have provided detail of the assessment stages and areas being assessed to help you prepare for completing your application form, and to advise of what will be assessed following this, if you successfully pass the application stage.

Application form stage assessments

Making Effective Decisions - 250 word limit
Managing a Quality Service - 250 word limit
Delivering at Pace - 250 word limit
Communicating and Influencing - 250 word limit
Work History
Statement of Suitability - 500 word limit
A sift based on the lead behaviour, Making Effective Decisions, may be held if a large number of applications are received. If a large number of applications remain after the initial sift, your application will be progressed to a full sift, where all behaviours will then be considered.

Interview stage assessments

There is 1 interview stage for this vacancy.
Strengths may also be assessed at interview but these are not shared in advance.

A Great Place to Work for Veterans

The "Making the Civil Service a Great Place to work for veterans" initiative includes a guaranteed interview scheme to those who meet the minimum criteria to provide eligible former members of the Armed Forces with opportunities to secure rewarding jobs. Allowing veterans to continue to serve their country, and to bring highly skilled individuals with a broad range of experience into the Civil Service in an environment, which recognises and values your previous service in the Armed Forces.
For further details about the initiative and eligibility requirements visit : https://www.gov.uk/government/news/making-the-civil-service-a-great-place-to-work-for-veterans

Redeployment Interview Scheme

Civil Service departments are expected to explore redeployment opportunities before making an individual redundant. The MoJ are committed, as part of the Redeployment Interview Scheme, to providing opportunities to those who are 'at risk of redundancy'.

MoJ are able to offer an interview to eligible candidates who meet the minimum selection criteria, except in a limited number of campaigns. Candidate's will not be eligible for the Redeployment Interview Scheme if they are applying on promotion.

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

· UK nationals

· nationals of the Republic of Ireland

· nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK

· nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities with settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS) (opens in a new window) https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families

· nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities who have made a valid application for settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)

· individuals with limited leave to remain or indefinite leave to remain who were eligible to apply for EUSS on or before 31 December 2020

· Turkish nationals, and certain family members of Turkish nationals, who have accrued the right to work in the Civil Service

Further information on nationality requirements (opens in a new window) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nationality-rules

This Vacancy is closed to applications.