Administrative Officers Ref. 2772

Mind Achieving Impact AwardSocial Mobility Foundation AwardThe Times Top 100Disability confident leaderThe Prince's Responsible BusinessStonewall Top Employer 2019 AwardThe Times Top 100

Cheltenham, London, Manchester
£23,998 - £26,790 (pro rata dependent on location)

About Us

MI5 and GCHQ 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

MI5's and GCHQ's missions are to keep the country and its people safe. It means we have really rewarding careers that rely on people with varied backgrounds, ages and skills – just like our Admin Officer role. As the backbone of our organisation, you’ll help keep our operations running smoothly. Whether you’ve just finished school or are returning to work after a break, whether you work full-time or part-time, you’ll have a hugely positive impact and be at the heart of what we do. It’s a chance to develop your skills and get plenty of support along the way.

You’ll do lots of different things as you’ll work across a variety of departments. Each one offers a range of roles, diverse challenges and interesting insights. Day-to-day, you’ll be organising meetings, managing information and records, booking travel, looking after visitors and providing essential support to our intelligence officers.

Whatever your background or experience, we’ll provide all the training you need to develop your organisational, interpersonal, customer service and communication skills. So, you’ll build a career and help us protect the country – all while discovering your potential.  

About You

Forget what you think you know about admin. We’re after lots of initiative and great organisational skills. If you’re organised, methodical and proactive, you already have some of the key skills required. You’ll have a passion for providing excellent customer service, and the ability to communicate with people at all levels of our business. No matter your background, if you’re keen to learn new skills and have a good eye for detail, you’ll have all the makings of an excellent Admin Officer. 

We’re interested in all the things that make you, you. So there’s really no ‘type’ of person we’re after. If you consider yourself to have a disability or long-term condition, we offer adjustments in the recruitment process and support you throughout your career.

You’ll need two GCSEs (or equivalent) in Maths and English, at grades A*-C / 9-4. Or, you’ll have relevant experience within an office and/or admin role and be confident with Microsoft 365 applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Training and Development

We’re hugely committed to staff development.  You’ll attend a short induction course when you join, where you’ll also be assigned a ‘buddy/mentor’. They’ll help show you around and settle you in to your new role. Throughout your career with us, you’ll have the opportunity to attend a range of personal development and job specific courses tailored to the area you’re working in. Whether they’re run by our own academy or you’re simply knowledge sharing, you’ll never stop learning. Our Admin Officers have even created a peer support group, where you can share ideas, organise events and build connections. 

Rewards and Benefits 

You’ll receive a starting salary of between £23,998 - £26,790 (pro rata dependent on location) 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.
  • Opportunities to be recognised through our employee performance scheme
  • Personal Learning Budget (dependant on organisation) 
  • 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 (dependant on location)
  • 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. So, you can just be your own unique self and feel part of the team from day one. As well as fostering an open culture, we have a range of growing affinity groups including: 

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. 

Before You Apply 

To work at MI5 or 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 or 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 roles are based in London, Cheltenham and Manchester 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 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, 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. 

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

We’re Disability Confident 

MI5 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 an Interview’. To secure an interview for this vacancy, the minimum criteria (in order of application process) are:  

  • Two GCSEs in Maths and English at grade A*-C/ 9-4 (or equivalent).
  • Successfully passing a question about your motivation for applying for the role
  • On completion of the application form, and successfully passing the full application form sift, you will be invited to interview.  This is your Offer of Interview.

(If you need any reasonable adjustments during the recruitment process, please let us know). 

Eligibility Criteria  

To be eligible to apply, you must be a British Citizen. 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 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 not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member. 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 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.

What to Expect 

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

  • Eligibility questions – you’ll answer a number of questions based on the requirements for the role.  
  • Initial form – you’ll create a personal account and complete our equal opportunities monitoring questions. If you do not feel comfortable completing equal opportunities monitoring, there is a ‘prefer not to say’ option for each question. 
  • Application form – you’ll be asked to complete an application which will cover relevant experience, your motivation for applying and some situational judgement questions aligned to being an Admin Officer, but which require no prior knowledge or experience of the role. 
  • To process your application, it is essential that you provide all the information requested in the application form. Our recruitment team will complete an application sift and successful applicants will be invited to the next stage which is a telephone interview. 
  • Online interview – this interview will take place online over a video conferencing system. You won’t be required to visit any of our premises. This interview will further explore that you have the potential skills and motivation to join MI5/GCHQ. 
  • Security interview – this interview will take place in London, Cheltenham or Manchester, depending on the role and location you have applied for, and is an important part of the selection process. It’s an interview to explore your life and experiences, and it’s not a competency or capability-based interview. We have taken appropriate measures to ensure that our buildings are COVID secure and this interview will take place in line with current government guidance around social distancing and COVID procedures. 

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 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.