GDS hiring product managers

The Government Digital Service has posted a job advert, seeking five ‘world-class‘ product managers, on a 24-month fixed-term basis. I can’t see any detail on what the five ‘products’ actually are; but there’s a lengthy application form, posted online in Word format only, allowing you plenty of room to explain why you’re suitable to manage them.

There’s a total salary package of up to £90k ‘available for exceptional candidates depending on specialist skills and expertise’, but that comprises base salary, additional pensionable allowances, pension benefits, generous annual leave allowance and flexible working arrangements.

It’s interesting to see these positions being advertised externally: questions have been asked about the recruitment of GDS staff thus far, and the extent to which positions have been externally advertised. In a comment on a recent blog post, James Taylor acknowledged:

All roles in the GDS have to be filled in line with the Recruitment Principles published by the Civil Service Commission.

The Commission excepts certain appointments from the principle of appointment on merit through fair and open competition where it believes this is justified by the needs of the Civil Service. In the case of the GDS, some roles have been considered to be exempt under the following condition.

See Annex C of the Recruitment Principles:

3. Appointments of individuals with highly specialised skills and experience for up to two years to allow highly specialised people to be brought in without a competition for a particular one-off job on the basis that such a process would be a mere formality. Any proposal for a longer appointment at the outset or to extend an appointment made under this exception beyond two years requires the approval of the Civil Service Commission.

Closing date for applications is 4 November, with interviews in the week of 21 November. ‘Late or faxed applications will not be accepted’.