Clinical Psychologist Ref. 2608

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Specialist Roles
Cheltenham, London, Manchester

About Us

MI5, MI6 and GCHQ are 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.

Across our community, we have a number of roles available for Clinical Psychologists at a range of grades. These roles offer a fascinating and unique opportunity to apply your expert psychological knowledge in our setting, working in an innovative and creative way, within rigorous ethical and professional guidelines. You will join a well-established, dynamic and supportive team of practitioner psychologists with expertise across a range of areas.  High level peer supervision is embedded within the team and there are frequent CPD opportunities. 


The Roles                                            

Role 1 - Consultant Clinical Psychologist (GCHQ and MI5)

Location: Manchester Full Time (GCHQ) London Part Time (MI5)
Salary: £57,570 - £69,018 plus concessionary payment of £2,771. 
Full time 37 hours a week / Flexible Working / Part Time 

These core roles involve supporting the Personnel Security department in assessing staff suitability to hold security clearance and ability to fulfil demanding roles. In doing so, you will provide expert advice and consult on questions around staff vulnerability, resilience and risk within a rewarding and fast-paced environment.

With plenty of variety and scope for developing your own skills, you can expect to provide clinical advice and guidance on risk management and mitigation to non-psychologist colleagues, alongside supporting the design and delivery of bespoke training courses for a range of different groups. You will contribute to quality improvement and practice-based research projects, and may provide mentoring, supervision and management to other practitioner psychologists and customer groups.


About You

You will have a Masters or Doctorate in Clinical Psychology or dual registered Clinical/Forensic Psychology (or equivalent, conferring eligibility for chartership with BPS) and be registered with HCPC as a Clinical Psychologist. Experience of working at Principal (NHS Band 8b or equivalent) or Consultant Level (NHS Band 8c/8d or equivalent) is also essential.

You will be skilled in interpreting a range of information from clinical interview and psychometry into accessible formulation-driven reports. You will be comfortable working autonomously on clinical risk assessments and decision making and be a confident consultant to senior colleagues on a wide range of subjects. With an enjoyment of networking and working with multidisciplinary colleagues, you will be open to learning and innovation and to taking on new challenges.

Please do not deselect yourself if you feel you do not have direct experience of working in Government, Intelligence or Security. If you are a competent clinical or duel Clinical/Forensic Psychologist in your area with strong formulation, risk assessment and interpersonal skills, we are keen to receive your application. 


Responsibilities:
•    Consultation to Corporate teams including Recruitment, Personnel Security, Occupational Health, Employee Assistance/Wellbeing on psychological aspects of staff security and wellbeing issues, including complex casework. 
•    Direct and indirect clinical assessment of applicants and existing staff as appropriate.
•    Development, delivery, and evaluation of psychologically informed training sessions.
•    Engagement with Corporate Psychology Leads to identify themes and issues of relevance to risk/suitability assessments and training.
•    Psychological assessment in support of staff selection for highly sensitive or demanding roles.
•    Participation in small scale research and audit projects to inform and develop best practice approaches.
•    Engagement with wider Behavioural Science community to facilitate innovation and sharing of ideas and skills.
•    Active engagement in regular peer supervision and ethical practice reflection.
•    Active engagement in CPD to meet HCPC and local requirements.
•    Line Management of practitioner psychologists as appropriate.
•    Participation in UK and International Conferences 

 

Role 2 - Consultant Clinical Psychologist, with strong research background (GCHQ ONLY)

Location: Based in either Cheltenham, London or Manchester (travel will be expected between locations)
Salary: £63,011 (on scale to £69,018) plus concessionary payment of £2,771.
Full time 37 hours a week / Flexible Working / Part Time. 

As part of an expansion of the Behavioural Science Capability across the UK Government, we are establishing a new Research Centre. This behavioural-science-led cross-agency centre will undertake research and develop and deliver robust, evidence-based interventions to help the UK Intelligence Community, wider Government and industry partners to better identify and mitigate insider risk. 

We are seeking to recruit an experienced Consultant Clinical Psychologist with extensive research experience to specialise in the application of clinical psychology to internal security and risk. The role will bridge the research-practice interface between the new Research Centre and day to day clinical practice in UK Personnel Security Vetting. It will also identify opportunities for improvement in Personnel Security practice through innovation.

The role will involve some national and international travel, so flexibility to be away from home for short periods of time may be required.  Candidates will be given notice of travel in advance. 


About You

You will have a Masters or Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (or equivalent, conferring eligibility for chartership with BPS) and be registered with the HCPC as a Clinical Psychologist. Experience of working at Principal (NHS Band 8b or equivalent) or Consultant Level (NHS Band 8c/8d or equivalent) is essential, supported by a portfolio of published peer-reviewed research.
 
You will have a proven background in clinical or clinical and forensic practice, particularly around risk assessment and management, as well as expertise in research/academia. 

Using your communication, empathy and listening skills, you will be able to present a psychological perspective confidently and credibly to those from a non-psychology background.

You will thrive in an often fast-paced environment, working under pressure and turning around assessments and advice within short time scales without sacrificing quality. With a commitment to ethical, evidence-based practice and psychological codes of conduct, you will also adopt a pragmatic approach to delivering client solutions.

Your energy, ingenuity and collaborative approach will help develop this exciting new service in support of our broader National Security mission.


Responsibilities:
Leadership:
•    Provision of Clinical Psychology insights to all aspects of the Research Centre Leadership Team.
•    Support and collaboration with the Insider Risk Research Lead.
•    Help shape the evolving strategy of the Research Centre as it evolves from initial development to established business as usual.
•    Take on potential delegated responsibilities for co-ordinating workflow for the Head of the Research Centre.
•    Potential line management of practitioner psychology/behavioural science staff.
Research:
•    Inform all aspects of the research cycle including prioritise, design and oversee delivery of research programmes.
•    Improve data collection and analysis of practice-based evidence in corporate psychology and personnel security/vetting.
•    Bring a clinical perspective to current and evolving programmes of research, including shaping key research questions, methodologies and interpretation of results.
Partnerships:
•    Represent clinical perspectives and the Research Centre senior leadership team in partnerships with academia, industry and national security organisations.  
•    Work collaboratively across the wider behavioural science landscape including, but not limited to, Joint Behavioural and Social Science Senior Leadership Team, Training and Professional Hub.
Consultancy:
•    All aspects of evidence-based guidance to Research Centre Strategy and Programmes of work
•    Risk assessment expertise to relevant organisational groups, partners and stakeholders.
•    Consultation and collaboration with corporate psychologists and other staff groups on implementation of emerging best practice.
Clinical:
•    Manage a small caseload of direct clinical work in personnel security to acquire deep expertise on current and evolving best practice in the application of clinical psychology to personnel security.
Professional:
•    Engage with wider government community of Practitioner Psychologists working in Personnel Security, take up opportunities for CPD and Clinical Supervision, and adhere to relevant professional codes of ethics and practice.


Role 3 - Clinical Psychologist or Clinical & Forensic Psychologist (GCHQ/MI5/MI6)
Location: Manchester, Cheltenham or London
Salary: £42,987 - £56,742 plus concessionary payment of £2,771, dependent on experience and location.  

The roles involve supporting functions within a number of National Security Government Departments, including Personnel Security and Wellbeing. You will be supporting individuals working in demanding and high-risk roles. You will provide expert advice and consultation on questions around individual vulnerability, resilience and risk within a rewarding and fast-paced environment. You will enjoy networking and multidisciplinary working, be very open to learning and taking on new challenges.

With plenty of variety and scope for developing your own skills, you can expect to provide clinical advice and guidance on risk management and mitigation to non-psychologist colleagues, alongside supporting the design and delivery of bespoke training courses for a range of different groups. You will contribute to quality improvement and practice-based research projects, and may provide mentoring, supervision and management to other practitioner psychologists and customer groups.


About You

You will have a Masters or Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (or equivalent, conferring eligibility for chartership with BPS) and be registered with HCPC as a Clinical Psychologist. Significant experience of working at NHS Band 7 or 8a/8b as a Clinical Psychologist is essential. 

You will be skilled in interpreting a range of information from clinical interview and psychometry into accessible formulation-driven reports. You will be comfortable working autonomously on clinical risk assessments and decision making. With an enjoyment of networking and working with multidisciplinary colleagues, you will be open to learning and innovation and to taking on new challenges.

Please do not deselect yourself if you feel you do not have direct experience of working in Government, Intelligence or Security. If you are a competent clinical or clinical/forensic psychologist in your area with strong formulation, risk assessment and interpersonal skills, we are keen to receive your application. 


Responsibilities:
•    Consultation to Corporate teams including Personnel Security, Occupational Health, Employee Assistance/Wellbeing on psychological aspects of staff security and wellbeing issues, including complex casework. 
•    Consultation to other teams around psychological aspects of individual security and wellbeing, including complex casework.
•    Direct and indirect clinical assessment of individuals as appropriate.
•    Development, delivery and evaluation of psychologically informed training sessions.
•    Engagement with Team Leads to identify themes and issues of relevance to risk/suitability assessments and training.
•    Psychological assessment in support of selection for highly sensitive or demanding roles.
•    Participation in small scale research and audit projects to inform and develop best practice approaches.
•    Engagement with wider Behavioural Science community to facilitate innovation and sharing of ideas and skills.
•    Active engagement in regular peer supervision and ethical practice reflection.
•    Active engagement in CPD to meet HCPC and local requirements.
•    Participation in UK and International Conferences


Role 4 - Clinical or Counselling Psychologist (GCHQ ONLY)
Location: Cheltenham ; Manchester
Salary:  £43,957 - £55,132 plus concessionary payment of £2,428

The roles involve supporting functions within GCHQ focused on delivering a comprehensive service to support staff working with high levels of psychological risk in the workplace. You will provide support to individuals working in demanding and high-risk roles and the managers of those services. You will provide expert advice and consultation on questions around individual vulnerability, resilience and risk within a rewarding and fast-paced environment. You will enjoy networking and multidisciplinary working and be very open to learning and taking on new challenges. 

With plenty of variety and scope for developing your own skills, you can expect to provide clinical advice and guidance on risk management and mitigation to non-psychologist colleagues, alongside supporting the design and delivery of bespoke training courses for a range of different groups. You will contribute to quality improvement and practice-based research projects, and may provide mentoring, supervision and management to other practitioner psychologists and customer groups. Whilst the majority of the work will comprise preventative intervention, the post-holder will carry a small caseload comprising specialist trauma-focused therapy casework.


About You

You will have a Masters or Doctorate in Clinical Psychology or Counselling Psychology (or equivalent, conferring eligibility for chartership with BPS) and be registered with HCPC. Significant experience of working clinically at NHS Band 7 level or above (or equivalent) is essential. 

You will be skilled in interpreting a range of information from clinical interview and psychometry into accessible formulation-driven reports. You will be comfortable working autonomously on clinical risk assessments and decision making. With an enjoyment of networking and working with multidisciplinary colleagues, you will be open to learning and innovation and to taking on new challenges. 

Please do not deselect yourself if you feel you do not have direct experience of working in Government, Intelligence or Security. If you are a competent Clinical or Counselling Psychologist in your area with strong formulation, risk assessment and interpersonal skills, we are keen to receive your application. 


Responsibilities:

•    Direct and indirect clinical assessment of individuals as appropriate, including collaborative health surveillance/impact monitoring
•    Consultation to Corporate teams including Personnel Security, Occupational Health, on staff wellbeing issues, including complex casework. 
•    Consultation to business partners on psychological aspects of individual security and wellbeing, including complex casework.
•    Development, delivery and evaluation of psychologically informed training sessions.
•    Psychological assessment in support of selection for and review of highly sensitive or demanding roles.
•    Participation in small scale research and audit projects to inform and develop best practice approaches.
•    Engagement with wider Behavioural Science community and other government departments to facilitate innovation and sharing of ideas and skills.
•    Active engagement in regular peer supervision and ethical practice reflection.
•    Active engagement in CPD to meet HCPC and local requirements.
•    Delivery of specialist, evidence based trauma therapy
•    Delivery of post-incident reflection/support intervention
•    Delivery of reflective-practice to colleagues and seniors responsible for managing high risk roles
•    Participation in UK and International Conferences


FOR ALL ROLES: 

Additional Experience
 
Any of the following would be welcome, but are not essential and will not form part of the sift criteria: 
•    Forensic experience and/or qualifications
•    Neuropsychological assessment and/or occupational assessment
•    Working knowledge of personality psychometrics
•    Experience of working with other government departments and/or in military/police/security settings
•    Experience of using new technology to enable clinical psychological or behavioural science-based assessments, interventions and research
•    Experience of working cross-culturally and/or working or living overseas,
•    Foreign language skills and/or advanced IT skills
•    Skills in quality improvement interventions and service development. 
•    For the Research Centre role: 
•    Experience of delivering and/or leading high-quality behavioural science research 
•    Research Programme Management experience
•    Evidence of working across complex systems and/or academic partnerships
•    Qualification at Doctorate level


Training and Development

At MI5, MI6 and GCHQ we're proud of our inclusive and supportive working environment, which is designed to encourage open minds and attitudes. As an organisation that values and nurtures talent, we are committed to helping you fulfil your potential.

There is a wide range of in-house and external opportunities for personal and professional development. Furthermore, training and development in specialist skills related to the role is actively supported.  


Rewards and Benefits
•    25 Days Annual Leave automatically rising to 30 days after 5 years' service, and an additional 10.5 days public and privilege holidays.
•    Opportunities to be recognised through our employee performance scheme
•    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
•    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 have 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.

 
Before You Apply
 
To work at MI5, MI6 and GCHQ, you need to be a British citizen. We do 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.
 
Honesty and integrity are really important if you want to work at MI5, MI6 and GCHQ. Take some time to read about the vetting process and make sure you meet the criteria in the vetting pages of the ‘How to Apply’ section. The process can take some time, but this is just because it’s thorough. Giving misleading information and omitting or concealing information during the recruitment and vetting process is viewed very seriously.
 
The role is based in MI5, MI6 and GCHQ, so you’ll need to live within a commutable distance. Please consider any financial implications and practicalities before submitting an application.
 
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.
 
Equal Opportunities
 
At MI5, MI6 and GCHQ diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission. 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, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, ages, 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.
 
We’re Disability Confident
 
MI5, MI6 and GCHQ 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 Interview’. If you apply for either of these roles as a disabled applicant and meet the Eligibility and Minimum Criteria this interview offer will be a telephone interview.   

The Minimum Criteria: 
•    Masters or Doctorate in Clinical or Counselling Psychology according to role (or equivalent, conferring eligibility for chartership with BPS)
•    Registered with HCPC 
•    FOR CONSULTANT ROLES: Experience of working at Principal (NHS Band 8b or equivalent) or Consultant Level (NHS Band 8c/8d or equivalent)
•    For the Research Centre role, role 2, you must have a portfolio of published peer-reviewed research.
•    FOR CLINICAL & COUNSELLING PSYCHOLOGIST ROLES: Significant experience of working at NHS Band 7 is essential. 
   

Eligibility
To be eligible to apply, you must be a British Citizen.  One of your parents must be a British Citizen or must have one of the nationalities or citizenships from one of the following: British overseas territory, British Subject, British National (overseas), British Overseas Citizen, British Protected Person, citizenship of a country in the Commonwealth, citizenship of a country in the European Economic Area (EEA), or citizenship of the United States of America (USA).  If deceased, they should have had such citizenship or nationality before death.  If you hold dual nationality, of which one component is British, you will nonetheless be considered. If successful, you will not normally be required to give up your non-British citizenship but, as a condition of your employment or secondment, MI5/ GCHQ /MI6 may impose restrictions on your postings, work travel and/or general use of that nationality.  Candidates must normally have been resident in the UK for seven out of the last ten years. This is particularly important if you were born outside the UK. Each case will be carefully considered on its own facts. You can apply at the age of 17 years, if successful you will not be offered a start date prior to your 18th birthday.  
Discretion is vital. You should only launch you 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 of the UK will impact on our ability to progress your application.  Further information on our eligibility criteria can be found on the Applying section of our website.
 
What to Expect
Our recruitment process is fair, transparent, and based on merit. Here is a brief overview of each stage, in order: 
•    Eligibility Sift
•    Paper Sift
•    Telephone Interview
•    Assessment Centre (including selection tasks and panel interview)
•    Drugs test and vetting

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.


Our Vetting
To work in this role, 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 
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.