Cryptographic Ordering, Production, Distribution and Accounting (Various Posts) Ref. 2708

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Information Assurance and Specialists
£20,147 Plus NSP £2,189

Job Summary

At GCHQ, we unlock the complex world of data and communications to keep the UK and its citizens safe, both in the real world and online. Working closely with our British Intelligence partners in MI5 and MI6, we protect the UK from threats including serious organised crime, terrorism, and cyber-attacks. A role in GCHQ means you’ll have varied and fascinating work in a supportive and encouraging environment that puts the emphasis on teamwork.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), part of GCHQ, is the UK Government’s lead authority on cyber security. The organisation is at the heart of the Government’s cyber security strategy and has the aim of making the UK the safest place to live and work online.   

To support our mission, opportunities are now available within the United Kingdom Key Production Authority (UKKPA), part of the National Cyber Security Centre.

We are looking for a number of individuals to work in the following teams:
•    Cryptographic Key Material Ordering
•    Cryptographic Key Material Production
•    National Distribution Authority

Job Description

What will the successful candidate be doing?

The UKKPA provides a crucial service across Government and industry, supplying a multitude of customers with essential cryptographic key material. You may be involved in:
•    Processing orders for cryptographic key material and equipment.
•    The generation and production of cryptographic key material using our computer-based production systems.
•    The preparation and packaging for dispatch of physical cryptographic key material.
•    The preparation and distribution of electronic cryptographic key material.
•    The accounting of cryptographic key material.
•    Maintaining customer accounts/records.
•    The daily use of an ORACLE based system (all roles).
•    Documentation reviews and updates to work instructions (all roles).
•    Customer liaison.

In addition, successful candidates will potentially be involved in major change projects which focus on transitioning the more traditional physical cryptographic material to electronic format. 

Following a structured training path, you will receive on the job training by a supportive team which will develop existing skills and develop new ones, therefore prior experience is not essential.  However, we do ask you have an interest and aptitude in learning new technical skills, which will assist with building your career within GCHQ.

Person Specification

We are looking for people from all backgrounds who have had experience of or who would like to work in a diverse team utilising IT based production systems in a secure facility.

Candidates must have good attention to detail in order to deliver a quality product to a unique customer base.  Analytical thinking and problem-solving skills are required as is the need for good customer relationship skills and the ability to communicate clearly and effectively.  The working day can be varied, so we need team players who can turn their hand to a variety of different tasks as the occasion demands.  

The right candidate will have a desire to learn and the ability to accept they will sometimes carry out routine work but will have the opportunity to acquire valuable skills to carry out more challenging aspects of the role.  

If you have a minimum of GCSE Maths and English at grade 4 and above or equivalent or have good written and numeracy skills, demonstrated in a workplace based environment and are proficient in the use of MS Office, we will welcome your application.

GCHQ Competency Requirements

•    Communication and Knowledge sharing    - Fundamental 
•    Corporate Vision and Efficiency   - Fundamental 
•    Change and Innovation   - Fundamental 
•    Analysis and Decision Making - Intermediate
•    Contribution to Delivery   - Intermediate
•    Managing the Customer Relationship   - Intermediate
•    Working with and Leading Others - Fundamental 

Two out of three competencies will be set at Intermediate (dependent on role).

You can familiarise yourself with the general competencies we use to assess the aptitude of candidates here - Recruitment Process

Benefits we offer

At NCSC and GCHQ, we are proud of our inclusive and supportive working environment that’s designed to encourage open minds and attitudes.  As an organisation that values and nurtures talent, we are committed to helping you fulfil your potential.  With comprehensive training and development opportunities, tailored to your needs and the requirements of your work, we will enable you to flourish in your role and perform to the very best of your abilities.

You’ll receive a starting salary of £20,147 plus an annual National Security Payment of £2,189 subject to mandatory training.

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
•    An environment with flexible working options
•    Opportunities to be recognised through our employee performance scheme.
•    Interest-free season ticket loan
•    Cycle to work scheme
•    Facilities such as a gym, restaurant and on-site coffee bars (at some locations)
•    Paid parental and adoption leave.
•    A Civil Service pension with an average employer contribution of 27%

Selection Process

Before You Apply

To work at GCHQ, 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 role is based in Cheltenham, so you’ll need to live within a commutable distance. Please consider any financial implications and practicalities before submitting an application, as we do not offer relocation costs.

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.

What to Expect

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

•    Application sift
•    Interview
•    If successful, you will receive a conditional offer of employment subject to vetting.

Please note, you must successfully pass each stage of the process to progress to the next. Your application may take around 6 - 9 months to process including vetting, so we advise you to continue any employment until you have received your final job offer.

We’re Disability Confident

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 offer a person-to-person interview to any candidate who self-identifies as disabled and meets the essential criteria for the role.  This is our ‘Offer of Interview’ (OOI). 

To secure an interview for this vacancy, you must meet the minimum criteria for the role.

Equal Opportunities

At 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, 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:

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 must 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.

The closing date for this role is: 23:55 15th December 2022.

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.