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Private Secretary

Higher Executive Officer


Salary Range:

HEO - London: £34,410 - £37,260 - Private Office uplift of 18%

Department and Location:

Department for Energy Security & Net Zero


Advert Closing Date:


Contract Type:


Available Working Pattern:

Flexible Working, Full-time, Job share

Civil Service Jobs Reference:


Job Description:

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) is at the forefront of the Government’s plan to secure the UK’s long-term energy supply, bring down bills and half inflation. As a department, we are responsible for delivering security of the UK’s energy supply; ensuring properly functioning energy markets; encouraging greater energy efficiency and seizing the opportunities of net zero to lead the world in new green industries.

We are recruiting for an HEO Private Secretaries to work directly with DESNZ Ministers. This is a stretching, high-profile role demonstrating a wide range of core Civil Service skills in a uniquely challenging environment. Private Secretaries are the key link between Ministers, SpAds and the Department, working to deliver the steers and priorities of ministers based on the highest-quality advice from officials.

As an HEO Private Secretary you will work as part of a fast-paced and fun 5-6 person team, led by a G7 Senior Private Secretary, directly supporting the DESNZ Ministers. You will need to be able to hit the ground running, be approachable to officials across BEIS, Whitehall, and demonstrate the confidence, resilience and flexibility required to deliver the highest quality service to Ministers.

These positions sit within the Strategy Directorate (PSPO) in DESNZ. We are committed to being an inclusive employer with a diverse and representative workforce at all levels. 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 and those with other protected characteristics. Appointments are made on merit on the basis of fair and open competition.

Due to business requirements this post is full time. Candidates will be expected to be in the office on average 4 days per week, though it is possible to work from home more often during periods of Parliamentary recess.Some national and international travel is likely to be required

Person Specification:

In these roles delivering DESNZ’s energy and climate work, you will:

- Advise the Minister on the UK’s climate and energy policy and have scope to shape your policy portfolio;

- Support the Minister to deliver their priorities by working with Senior Officials in DESNZ and across Whitehall;

- Support the Minister with Parliamentary work, including Bills, debates, DESNZ orals and statements;

- Accompany the Minister to events and on domestic and international trips.

- Build positive relationships with teams throughout the Department and Whitehall.

We are looking for organised, hardworking and perceptive individuals to fit into close-knit, fun and friendly teams. The roles provide an exciting front row seat to see how crucial policies are developed and delivered, and how decisions are made. In particular, we are looking for the following skills and experience:

- Exceptional organisation skills with strong planning and prioritisation skills

- Strong communication and interpersonal skills

- An ability to work through others with nuance and sensitivity

- An ability to understand the strategic big picture

- An ability to work well under pressure and at pace

- Strong attention to detail

Skills, experience and qualifications (Desirable) –

- Policy experience

- Experience of working with senior stakeholders or in a Private Office

You will be offered support to develop in your role. This includes training and coaching and options such as mentoring and action learning sets. Private Office has an extensive learning and development offer from induction onwards. This includes offers tailored to the interests and demands of our teams. We follow best practice in line management in DESNZ through regular performance management discussions and in-year reward rounds to recognise performance. We encourage people of all grades to become leaders in taking forward our corporate action plan. We are currently focused on three areas: Wellbeing, Diversity and Learning and Development.

Please note that applicants with Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS) are eligible to apply but need to be willing to undergo Security Check (SC) upon starting the role.

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