UK civil servant competencies
February 17, 2018 9:48 AM   Subscribe

Hi, I'm applying for a grade 6 data scientist role in the civil service in the UK. It is my first application for a civil service role, there are a lot of hoops to jump through when it comes to the application. Does anyone have experience or any good resources for writing good examples for the competencies (this is specific to the UK civil service)?

For this particular job I have to write a max 2 page cover letter covering my background and which also addresses five particular competencies, which is a lot to fit in. I have plenty of examples in which I try to cover the (many) points required. I've used this mainly so far. I have used STAR technique, I'm mainly having problems assessing how good my examples are.

I'm considering paying an online service to help me.

Throwaway email:
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm in the civil service and think competency examples are a horrible thing to write.

ACAS have some good advice here (.doc file).

STAR is a decent system, but I'd say one of the key things to do is really get across the impact of what you did in each example. It's all very well to talk about your technical skill, but you need to show how your fancy data tool saved your team time and resources that were then and to be deployed elsewhere etc.

Good luck!
posted by knapah at 10:03 AM on February 17, 2018

Civil servant of 16 years here: I've written lots of these and read hundreds more when sitting on recruitment panels. knapah's advice on having a really concrete outcome is good. In addition, two tips:

- the various 'professions' within the Civil Service often have their own, very specific competency frameworks. The overarching one you link to is the base for all of them, but by necessity it has to be pretty high-level. I can't find a specific data science one but there is a very similar set of career skill descriptors here. Worth doing a bit of digging for frameworks for other analytical roles e.g. statisticians.

- Grade 6 is a management and leadership role. The typical Grade 6 analyst I work with will have a team of maybe 5-20 people, a couple just below them in seniority then more at junior level. Even if there is a specific leadership competency, using other examples to show how you led a team or group of people to deliver the outcome is always helpful.

Feel free to message me if you've got any questions.
posted by greycap at 6:52 AM on February 18, 2018

Yes, in my department most grade 6 analysts lead units of 10-15 people, normally structures in to 2 or 3 teams. They're pretty substantial roles.
posted by knapah at 11:28 AM on February 18, 2018

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