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Security Policy & Operations (SPO) Directors (3 Posts)

SCS Pay Band 2

Policy, Senior Leadership

Salary Range:


Department and Location:

Ministry of Defence


Advert Closing Date:


Contract Type:


Available Working Pattern:

Flexible Working, Full-time

Civil Service Jobs Reference:


Job Description:

We are recruiting for 3 posts in the SPO space:

Director Operational Policy – In this role, you will support Defence’s new Campaign teams by delivering strategic frameworks and cross-cutting operational policy across key thematic areas, including Special Operations, targeting, Cyber and commitments to the UK Homeland. This is at the heart of ensuring Defence can deliver on multi-year objectives and react to crises when they develop, ensuring the military/policy partnership develops and implements novel and audacious activities to meet the threats of today and tomorrow. You will need to work closely with across government stakeholders – including the intelligence agencies and international partners.

Director Policy and Plans – In this role, you will be central to delivering the Campaigning approach outlined in the Defence Command Paper, translating Government and Departmental strategy into strategic policy and planning. That will include support to Defence’s new Campaign teams, delivering strategic policy and planning to meet threat-led objectives, using influential levers that are both responsive to current events and long-term strategic objectives. Key to this is developing and operating sophisticated, data-driven measurement of effect and allowing seniors to make strategic choices of the allocation of Defence levers, including military forces, to best meet our ambitions.

Director, Strategic Alliances and Partnerships, Europe and NATO – In this role, you will be responsible for maintaining and developing sophisticated relationships with fellow policy directors and our allies: a crucial element of delivering defence outcomes, be that through bilateral defence to defence relationships or in multilateral fora such as NATO, the Joint Expeditionary Force and the EU. The post’s remit extends to Russia, Eastern Europe and Central Asia and is therefore responsible for developing and delivering policy to counter Russia and leading MOD’s work to support Ukraine.
These posts are excellent opportunities to own and shape these fascinating and challenging policy areas, working with a broad range of Defence, across government, and international stakeholders. Partnering with military colleagues and integrating outcomes across the range of Defence business is crucial to success in these roles.

Person Specification:

The successful candidates must be able to demonstrate their experience and skills against the following essential criteria:

Excellent leadership and team building skills, committed to learning, development, diversity and inclusion.
Highly motivated and able to deliver high quality work at pace.
Highly effective communicator and influencer able to bring others with them, work collegiately and build strong relationships and a strategic thinker able to see the big picture, prioritise, be proactive and innovative.
Outstanding policy professional with a range of policy experience, including with international partners.
A successful track record in advising Ministers or other senior decision makers in large complex organisations with a focus on technical and highly sensitive areas of policy.
The courage and skills to tell the truth to power.
A proactive, driven and energetic problem solver, focused on delivery outcomes.

Desirable criteria may be used in the event of a strong field of candidates when there is a need to distinguish between candidates. This will be as a second sift, after the essential criteria has been considered:

Knowledge of the United Kingdom’s Defence and National Security architecture.

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