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Policy Advisors

  • 14/05/2024
  • £32,858.00 - £38,272.00 /yearly
  • Part Time & Permanent
Job expired!

Job Overview

Job Type

Part Time & Permanent


£32,858 - £38,272 yearly

Date Posted:


Expiration date:


Additional Detail

Job ID


Job Description

Job summary

The Department for Business and Trade (DBT) negotiates trade agreements for the UK and promotes UK Trade and Investment around the world. 

The Trade in Services Team sits within the Trade Negotiations Group. The team is responsible for developing services trade policy and leads high profile services negotiations in Free Trade Agreements and in multilateral fora such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO). 

Trade in services is a crucial element in the UK economy, making up 80% of UK GDP. The team aims to open up the markets of partner countries for UK suppliers, by enhancing mobility of skilled workers, a top ask of businesses, and improving rules on services trade, supporting the growth and success of the UKs services sector, including businesses in the professional services, financial services, and transport and logistics, sectors.  

We are recruiting four policy advisors across the Trade in Services Team. 

The roles 

The post-holders will work on the policy development for trade in services. This will include content in our future Free Trade Agreements, and other ways to use the UKs independent trade policy to support the growth and success of the UKs services sectors. The ideal candidates must be able to demonstrate problem solving, analytical skills, relationships building and engagement skills whilst also being self-organised and able to manage a varied workload. 

Our Trade in Services team is vibrant, hardworking, and collaborative. Much of your work will be done in collaboration with other team members.  

We place a strong emphasis on learning and development. The successful applicants will receive a tailored induction programme, taking into account their existing knowledge and experience.  

We are a friendly and inclusive hybrid team with current team members based in London, Salford, Birmingham and Darlington, although we welcome applications from candidates with a preference for any of DBTs seven office locations. Candidates should be willing to regularly travel to other DBT locations if required.  

Job description

The roles will work closely with DBT policy teams, internal and external stakeholders, analysts, legal, overseas posts, and other Departments. Your responsibilities will include, but will not be limited to:  

Developing robust and well-evidenced trade in services policy, drawing on expertise across the department, Whitehall, and external stakeholders.

Creating strong, collaborative relationships across Whitehall with key Departments to develop joined up policy and negotiating positions.

Supporting engagement with external stakeholders, drawing on advice and encouraging advocacy for UK trade policy.

Supporting engagement with ministers and senior officials, providing high quality and well-articulated advice on trade in services matters.

Providing advice on the negotiation of UK free trade agreements and development of future agreements. 

Person specification

Skills and Experience

Essential Criteria 

We are looking for candidates with: 

  • A problem-solving outlook, good strategic thinking and decision-making skills.
  • A flexible approach, proactive, adaptable and able to balance competing priorities.
  • Experience analysing information to reach conclusions and form recommendations. 
  • Good interpersonal skills, an ability to manage working relationships and bring together a wide range of interested individuals and groups.  
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills. 

Personal Attributes & Skills 

  • Ability to develop and present reasoned arguments based on analysis of evidence.
  • Ability to establish networks and build collaborative and productive relations with colleagues and external stakeholders.
  • Ability to pick up new subject matter quickly, work on complex policy issues and to master technical detail, and to communicate this as simply and clearly as possible.
  • Effective as a part of a team and comfortable working flexibly in a changing and fast-paced environment. 

 We welcome skills and knowledge from a wide range of backgrounds recognising that subject-specific knowledge will often be developed in the role. 


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

  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Delivering at Pace
Alongside your salary of £32,858, Department for Business and Trade contributes £8,871 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.
  • Learning and development tailored to your role
  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
  • A Civil Service pension with an average employer contribution of 27%

We recognise the challenges that people with (multiple) protected characteristics may experience on the job market and in their career progression. We are fully committed to being an inclusive employer and ensuring equal opportunities. We are keen to make our workforce as diverse as possible, and we hope to attract applications from underrepresented groups, including ethnic minorities, people with a disability, and people with gender diverse identities.

Please refer to the attached candidate pack for further information on our benefits.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours, Strengths and Experience.

Interviews for this vacancy will be conducted virtually. We will, however, consider in-person interviews by exception.

Please ensure that you check your emails regularly as all updates from us will be sent to you this way.

To apply for this post, you will be asked to complete the following as part of the online application:    

  • A CV setting out your career history, with key responsibilities and achievements. Provide employment history that relates to the essential criteria, and that any gaps in employment history within the last 2 years are explained. The CV should not exceed more than 2 x A4 pages. 
  • A Personal Statement of up to 500 words, explaining how you consider your personal skills, qualities and experience provide evidence of your suitability for the role in reference to the essential criteria.

It is likely that the sift will take place 1-2 weeks after the closing date and interviews 3-5 weeks after the closing date though this is subject to change.

In the event of a large number of applicants, an initial short sift will be conducted on the Personal Statement. Candidates who pass the initial sift may be progressed to a full sift or progressed straight to assessment/interview.   

Location and working arrangements 

This role is available in seven UK locations and can only be worked from within the UK, not overseas. Travel to your primary office location will not be paid for by DBT, but costs for travel to an office which is not your main location will be covered. 

Reasonable Adjustments

We are committed to supporting candidates so they can perform at their best throughout the recruitment process. This includes making reasonable adjustments to our process. In order to request an adjustment: 

Complete the Assistance required section on the Additional requirements page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. 

Alternatively contact the Government Recruitment Service at [email protected] as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.  

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

Candidate Support

You may want to join a virtual Candidate Support Session. These sessions include helpful tips and advice on the recruitment process, from application to interview.  

Please see attached Candidate Pack for further information on: Diversity and Inclusion; Benefits; Learning and Development; Working Patterns and what we deliver as a department. 

Further Information:

  • A reserve list may be held for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made. Reserve Lists will be for each location and appointments made in merit order based on location preferences.   
  • Any move to the Department for Business and Trade from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments.
  • The Department will not consider sponsoring a visa or issuing a Certificate of Sponsorship. We are unable to offer advice on any Visa and Immigration cases.  
  • New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.  
  • 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. Any applicant who has 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.  
  • Terms and Conditions are attached. Please take time to read the document to determine how these may affect you.
  • Please note the successful candidate will be expected to remain in post for a minimum of 18 months before being released for another role.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service /Disclosure Scotland/Access NI 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 [email protected] 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 [email protected] 

For further information on the Access NI confidential checking service telephone: the Access NI Helpline on 0300 200 7888 and ask to speak to the operations manager in confidence, or email [email protected] 


The requirement for SC clearance is to have been present in the UK for at least 3 of the last 5 years. Failure to meet the residency requirements will result in your security clearance application being rejected.   

For further information on National Security Vetting please visit the following page

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


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check (opens in a new window).

See our vetting charter (opens in a new window).
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

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)
  • 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)

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) 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 (opens in a new window).
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.

Diversity and Inclusion

The Civil Service is committed to attract, retain and invest in talent wherever it is found. To learn more please see the Civil Service People Plan (opens in a new window) and the Civil Service Diversity and Inclusion Strategy (opens in a new window).
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans (opens in a new window) initiative.
The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment (opens in new window).
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 :

Recruitment team

Further information

Our recruitment process is underpinned by the principle of appointment on the basis of fair and open competition and appointment on merit, as outlined in the Civil Service Commissioners Recruitment Principles.
If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with these principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should in the first instance contact DBT by email: [email protected].
If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, you can contact the Civil Service Commission, which regulates all Civil Service recruitment.
For further information on bringing a complaint to the Civil Service Commission please visit their web pages: Click here to visit Civil Service Commission/Complaints


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