Technology Graduate Development Programme Ref. 2688

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Technology Roles
London, Greater Manchester
London £37,396 Manchester £35,283

About Us

MI5 and MI6 are part of the UK’s Intelligence Services. We work together to safeguard Britain’s people, interests and businesses from various threats at home, overseas and online, including cyber-attacks, espionage, terrorism, and organised crime. Working across our vital missions, you’ll deliver impact at the heart of national security, all within a supportive and inclusive environment that allows everyone to thrive.

The Role                
As the world moves to a new way of working, we are looking for innovators who would like to embark on an adventure to help us shape the future of technology at MI5 and MI6. So, if you’re up for a programme like no other, join us in making the country a safer place for everyone.

For us, technology plays a crucial and increasingly frontline role in safeguarding our nation from terrorism, espionage and cyber-attacks. Our Technology Graduate Development Scheme offers you the unique opportunity to apply and develop your skills in this vital area of work. 

This is a structured two-year development programme that is designed to fully equip you with the skills, knowledge and experience needed to be an effective part of MI5 and MI6’s technology workforce. Successful applicants will start the programme in Autumn 2023. For the duration of the Technology Graduate Development Scheme, you must be able to live in or commute to central London or Greater Manchester, depending on the role.
To be a part of the programme you will need to select one of the professions from those below to specialise in, having regard to the location of the role:

London based roles include:

•    Business Analysis (MI5 only). Day to day you will work with stakeholders to understand problems, draw up requirements on an ideal outcome and help design a solution to reach that outcome.

•    Project Support (MI5 only). You will cover a diverse range of activities to support the delivery of our Project, Programme and Portfolio objectives. You will build your ability in stakeholder management, implementing project plans, and applying structured processes and methodologies to successfully take projects to completion. This role will equip you with the skills and qualifications to grow in this profession.

•    Software Engineering (MI5 and MI6). You will work as part of a multi-disciplinary product team, to build and run secure applications and products that drive our investigations, analysis and corporate functions.  Our tech stacks vary between products, including Java or C# for back-end systems and JavaScript for our front-end, employing frameworks such as React.js.  We also make use of cloud technologies such as AWS and Azure.  Whatever you work on it will be unique, varied, and will have a direct and rewarding impact on the success of our organisations.

•    User Experience (UX) Design (MI5 only). You will incorporate experience design into every stage of product development, delivering highly usable products that delight end-users. Providing unique insight into prioritising areas for change, focusing on the way users interact with products, or development captivating visual concepts, you will be at the heart of designing MI5’s future mission capabilities.

•    Data Architecture (MI5 only). You will develop your understanding of data and your problem-solving skills to help us to use data more effectively to solve some of the mission’s hardest problems.  You’ll represent our Data Office in discussions with specialists in technology and product areas, and work with other agencies to establish standard ways of working that deal with some of the community’s most strategic issues.

•    Data Science and Machine Learning (MI5 only). You will apply a variety of data science and machine learning techniques in order to extract insights from unstructured data at scale. You will work as part of a multi-disciplinary team in order to optimise, scale and deploy machine learning capabilities to the organisation across both mission and corporate teams.

•    Data Engineering (MI5 only). You will work as part of a multi-disciplinary product team, to build and run secure data products and data flows that enable the analysis of data, using our investigations and tooling to improve our developer experience.  You will also learn the concepts of data profiling so that you can translate, implement, and deliver data models. Our tech stacks vary between our data products (such as Commercial-off-the-shelf products, Oracle, MongoDB, Elastic Search and Hadoop).  We also make use of cloud technologies such as AWS and Azure.

•    Information & Cyber Security (MI5 only). You will develop knowledge and skills that will equip you to understand, manage, and mitigate the risk of our critical data and services being disclosed, altered, or denied access to. You will research, understand and design security controls for systems and services, develop architecture patterns and security approaches to new technologies. You will also communicate security risk across technical and non-technical stakeholders enabling informed decisions to be made about business direction and priorities.

•    Security Engineer (MI5 only). Security Engineering is where Software Engineering meets Cyber Security.  You will work with software teams to help them embed best security practice into their product development processes from design to operations, providing information and cyber security advice to engineers, keeping them up to date on the latest cyber risks and how to defend against them. You will liaise closely with colleagues in Information & Cyber Security teams to develop rapid and pragmatic solutions to technical challenges such as viruses and malware which would otherwise impact MI5’s options.

Manchester-based roles are as detailed above and include:

•    Business Analysis
•    Project Support
•    Software Engineering
•    Data Science and Machine Learning
•    Data Engineering

About You

To join the Technology Graduate Development  Scheme, you will have a passion for technology and have (or be expecting) a 2:2 by September 2023 in a Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics (STEM) subject. 

We are keen to hear from you, whatever your background.

Whether you have a specific skill set or are looking to try something new, we are keen to find people with a positive attitude to change and an enthusiasm to learn. Working on issues with real-world impact, you’ll bring your ideas, beliefs, and your experience to help us create an inclusive and forward-thinking culture.

Training and Development

MI5 and MI6 are unique and stimulating places to work and we will ensure that you have all the ongoing support and development you need to build a rewarding and successful career with us. During the programme, you’ll receive a combination of extensive on the job and more formal training. You will also train alongside other members on the Technology Graduate Development Scheme. 

In addition, further external and accredited training and qualifications will be funded by us to support your future career. You’ll also have an opportunity to continually develop your personal and leadership skills. Our training programme is designed to enable you to meet your potential as an innovative technology professional and equip you with the skills and ability to manage and lead in different areas of our technology departments in the future. 

You will spend 80% of your time in placements and 20% of your time as a Technology Graduate Development Scheme cohort. Cohort activities may include team building events, challenges and presentations. Your development doesn’t stop at the end of the programme, it continues in your subsequent roles, we will fund relevant additional training that will enable you to complete or further advance your professional qualifications and career aspirations.

MI5 and MI6 are great places to work, and your work-life balance is important to us. We know that you will only give us your best if you are happy.  We are proud of our inclusive and supportive working environment. As organisations that value and nurture talent, we’re committed to helping you fulfill your potential throughout your career. 

Rewards and Benefits

You’ll receive a starting salary of £37,396 rising to £40,428 after one year (London-based roles) or £35,283 rising to £38,143 after one year (Manchester-based roles) plus other benefits including: 

-    25 Days Annual Leave automatically rising to 30 days after 5 years' service, and an additional 10.5 days public and privilege holidays
-    A generous training allowance to support across the period of the scheme
-    Opportunities to be recognised through our employee performance scheme
-    Personal Learning Budget
-    Opportunities to work flexibly, subject to business needs
-    Interest-free season ticket loan
-    Excellent pension scheme
-    Cycle to work scheme
-    Facilities such as a subsidised gym and restaurant, and on-site coffee bars at some locations
-    Paid parental and adoption leave

Culture and Working Environment 

As part of our team, you’ll discover an inclusive workplace that’s welcoming, supportive and encouraging. You’ll be part of an organisation where people want to support one another and make a difference. Aside from fostering an open culture, we’ve got a range of growing affinity groups. For example:  
•    Ethnic Minority and gender equality networks
•    Groups supporting wellbeing, mental health, neurodiversity and disability 
•    Faith/No Faith communities for staff to come together 
•    LGBTQ+ support networks

You’ll also find a variety of sports, activity, interest and social groups to help you settle in and connect with people with similar interests. 

Equal Opportunities

At MI5 and MI6 diversity and inclusion are critical to our missions. To protect the UK, we need a truly diverse workforce that reflects the society we serve. This includes diversity in every sense of the word: those with different backgrounds, ages, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, ways of thinking and those with disabilities or neurodivergent conditions. We therefore welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including those from groups that are under-represented in our workforce such as women, those from an ethnic minority background, people with disabilities and those from low socio-economic backgrounds.

Find out more about our culture, working environment and diversity on our website:

We’re Disability Confident

We are proud to have achieved Leader status within the DWP’s Disability Confident scheme.  This is aimed at encouraging employers to think differently about disability and take action to improve how they recruit, retain and develop disabled people.  Being Disability Confident, we aim to ensure that a fair and proportionate number of disabled applicants that meet the minimum criteria for this position will be offered an interview where practicable; this is known as ‘Offer of an Interview’. To secure an interview for this vacancy, the minimum criteria (in order of application process) are:

•    Eligibility Questions – You will be asked a series of questions relating to the role and working for this organisation. If you meet the criteria here, you will be directed to the initial application form.

•    Online Tests – You will be required to reach the pass mark set for our online test.

What to Expect

Our recruitment process is fair, transparent, and based on merit. Here is a brief overview of each stage, in order:

•    Pre-screening questions to find out if you meet our initial criteria. If you do, we will then ask you to begin an application. To do this you will need to create a login by providing your full name, email address and a memorable password. You will then be asked to complete a basic application form and equal opportunities monitoring information.

•    Situational judgement test. On receipt of an e-mail invitation, you will have up to one week to take the test. If you do not take the test within this time frame, we will assume that you no longer wish to proceed with your application. You will be given 25 minutes to complete the test and you will need to do this in one sitting.

•    If you pass this test, we will invite you to complete and submit our full application form. The application form consists of basic eligibility questions, sections for you to list your qualifications and work experience, as well as competency questions. It will explore your motivation to work for us and in particular why you want to join the Technology Graduate Development Scheme. Our recruitment team will then conduct an application sift.

•    Successful applicants will be invited to video interview. This interview will primarily be competency based and will require you to give specific examples of when you have demonstrated abilities or behaviours required to be successful in our programme.

•    Successful applicants will also complete an online Codility aptitude test depending on the specific role they have applied for.

•    If you pass the video interview, you will be invited to attend an assessment centre. We will be running assessment centres in March and April. If you successfully pass the final recruitment stage, you will be made a conditional offer of employment. These are made on the condition that you pass the Developed Vetting (DV) stages of the process, which will include a security interview with one of our vetting officers.
Please note, you must successfully pass each stage of the process in order to progress to the next. Your application may take around 6 - 9 months to process including vetting, so we advise you continue any current employment until you have received your final job offer.

Before You Apply

To work for us, you need to be a British citizen or hold dual British nationality. You can read our full eligibility criteria here.

This role requires the highest security clearance, known as Developed Vetting (DV). It’s something everyone in the UK Intelligence Community undertakes. You can find out more about the vetting process here.

Please note we have a strict drugs policy, so once you start your application, you can’t take any recreational drugs and you’ll need to declare your previous drug usage at the relevant stage.

The roles are based in Central London and Greater Manchester so you’ll need to live within a commutable distance. Please consider any financial implications and practicalities before submitting an application. An interest-free loan via our benevolent fund is available to assist with relocating into privately rented accommodation to take up the offer of employment.

Please note, you should only launch your application from within the UK. If you are based overseas, you should wait until you visit the UK to launch an application. Applying from outside the UK will impact on our ability to progress your application. You should not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member.

Our Vetting

To work in these roles, you will need the highest security clearance, known as Developed Vetting (DV). It’s something everyone in the UK Intelligence Community has to go through and it can take some time. As part of the DV process you will be asked to fill in a detailed questionnaire and attend an interview with a vetting officer. In your interview the vetting officer will have a thorough, compassionate and honest discussion with you about you as a person and your life experiences, to ensure holding a DV clearance is right for you. You don’t need to do any preparation for your vetting interview, just be honest and be yourself. All applicants for DV are treated impartially and consistently, irrespective of gender, race, disability, religion, age, sexual orientation and other protected characteristics.

Right to Withdraw Statement

Please be aware that we withhold the right to bring forward the closing date for this role from the original closing date once a certain number of applications have been received. Please be mindful of this and submit your application at your earliest convenience to avoid disappointment.

This Program / Vacancy is closed to applications.