The Civil Service is ranked number 6 in the larger intake firms in the Charity, Education and Public Sector Organisations. As an employer within the government, public sector and international development field, the Civil Service is committed to helping the government develop and implement its policies in the most effective way possible. When it comes to graduates, the Civil Service has developed the Civil Service Fast Stream, where graduates have the opportunity to work in areas such as the economy, defense policy, education and health whilst developing skills to prepare for leadership roles within 3-5 years. This academic year, applications have been opened for a second time from the 16th of February until the 7th of April (2015).

Data from reviews directly from graduates on the Civil Service Fast Stream explained that the average salary ranges from £27,000 – £29,000. One reviewer explained that ‘starting salary is £27,000 regardless of where you are based. This seems fair but without progression pay this can make 4 years of London living a bit demoralising’. Working hours averaged at 9am – 5pm and ‘there is a real stress placed on work life balance’.

The best and worst things about working on the Civil Service Fast Stream included;

‘The variety of work and roles that you can apply for. The flexibility in the working hours. Colleagues. Some roles may not have enough work to do but you get to choose your role based on conversations with the manager and rest of team.’

‘Ability to gain experience in a wide variety of areas in HMRC and the wider Civil Service. Chance to work on original research and analysis which benefits society. Community of other Assistant Economists within HMRC. Little funding available for training. Bureaucratic.’

‘Being at the heart of things, where the big government decisions are taken. Internal systems and processes not working – can’t find out who’s responsible for something or what their phone number is.’

Interview tips included ‘The interview is purely competency based, so think up your examples (in detail) beforehand’, ‘Look up the Civil Service Competency framework’ and ‘don’t treat the assessment centre like a test, act how you would if it was a day at work’.

You can find all the Civil Service Fast Stream reviews here and for more information on the roles available and how to apply, please visit the Fast Stream’s Blog site here or the Fast Stream information homepage here. 

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Jazz Panesar is a Digital and Technology Apprentice at Severn Trent. Read Jazz’s story here.

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Have your own questions prepared. It's your turn! As the interview comes to a close, one of the final questions you may be asked is "What can I answer for you?" Your interviewer will expect you to have...
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Research the Company. Do your homework about the employer and the industry so you are ready for the interview question "What do you know about this company?"
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