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Policy Advisor Fiscal Strategy

Category : Government
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Location : Belfast , London
Salary : £ - £ 36,049
Type : Permanent
Closing Date : 2022-08-04
Date Posted : 2022-07-31
Reference : 61883  

We encourage applications from people from all backgrounds and aim to have a workforce that represents the wider society that we serve. We pride ourselves on being an employer of choice. We champion diversity, inclusion and wellbeing and aim to create a workplace where everyone feels valued and a sense of belonging. To find out more about how we do this visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity.

Northern Ireland Office

Post Vacant
Band B, Policy Advisor, Fiscal Strategy

1 Horse Guards Road, London, SW1A 2HQ (with occasional travel to Belfast) or Erskine House, Chichester St, Belfast, BT1 4GF (with occasional travel to London)


Applications Invited From

Existing Home Civil Service staff either at Band B or analogous grades on level transfer or at Band C on promotion. External candidates with  comparable skills or experience. (salary scale: Inner London £41,747-£47,591) and National £36,049 - £41,095). New entrants to the Civil Service are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band advertised.

Who we are

Inclusion and diversity

The Northern Ireland Office is committed to being an inclusive employer with a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from people from the widest possible diversity of backgrounds, cultures and experiences.

We particularly welcome applications from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates, as they are under-represented within the NIO at this level.

The Northern Ireland Office strives to be an inclusive employer and is recognised by its staff and externally as being an employer where Diversity and Inclusion are valued.

We hold a Diversity & Inclusion Charter Mark and are an accredited Disability Confident Leader organisation.

In March 2018 we won the award for Best Employer for Diversity & Equality in Northern Ireland (small employer category) in a Gala Award ceremony hosted by Legal-Island, a multi-award winning workplace compliance company based in Northern Ireland.

We have an active D&I network supporting colleagues through D&I Advocates, championed by our Directors.

We want all our people to feel valued for who they are and we are confident that you will find the NIO a warm, welcoming and inclusive place to work.

What we do


The Northern Ireland Office represents Northern Ireland interests at a UK Government level and UK Government interests in Northern Ireland.  We have a wide range of responsibilities, including: underpinning political stability in Northern Ireland; overseeing the Northern Ireland devolution settlement; leading on national security policy in Northern Ireland; addressing the legacy of Northern Ireland’s past; delivering elections and constitutional reform in Northern Ireland; playing a key role in rebalancing the NI economy; representing NI interests, including  on the border with Ireland, now that the UK has left the EU.  Our small size and diverse portfolio create a stimulating, fast-paced and challenging working environment, with regular engagement with a range of Ministers and senior officials.  We support flexible working and have a modern, flexible IT system which helps enable this.

About The Role:

The NIO’s Economy Group are recruiting for a Band B/SEO to join a dynamic and fast-paced team, working on a varied policy portfolio to develop and implement the UK Government’s economic priorities in Northern Ireland.

The Economy Group’s role is to work with other Whitehall departments and the Northern Ireland Executive to strengthen the economy, boost innovation, drive investment and promote Northern Ireland as a place to do business. Our work also contributes to the Government’s levelling up agenda. The Economy Group is led by a Deputy Director and consists of four teams, managing economic strategy & analysis, fiscal policy, UK-wide funds and delivering Northern Ireland-specific funds.

This role fits within the fiscal policy branch but there may be opportunities to work across the Group, supporting ministerial priorities.

The Fiscal Policy Team supports the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in making the best use of the range of spending levers at their disposal to achieve the UK Government’s strategic objectives in Northern Ireland and to work with the Northern Ireland Executive to secure the best value for NI citizens from public funds. Key areas of work include:

  • Delivery of the £2bn New Decade, New Approach financial package to improve the lives of the people of Northern Ireland;
  • Delivery of the £562m City and Growth Deals programme to boost innovation and turbocharge the economy;
  • Working closely with the Treasury and the Northern Ireland Department of Finance to support the NI economy and deliver long term fiscal sustainability;
  • Influencing the allocation of investment in Northern Ireland through fiscal events, including the Budget and Autumn Statement to deliver UK Government objectives in Northern Ireland.
  • Communicating UK Government support and investment to NI businesses and wider stakeholders.

This post will require close working with Special Advisers and Ministers. As such there will be regular opportunities to support on ministerial engagements. The successful candidate will be required to work independently, owning high-profile policy areas in order to drive forward a number of strategically important programmes for the department.

Duties And Responsibilities:

In this role you will lead on priority areas for the department, working independently to drive forward and deliver on major financial commitments. This is a small team with a high-profile portfolio and there will be opportunities to lead on major programmes of work which will have a real-world impact.

This advert is open to both officials already at Band B/SEO level, and also to Band C/HEO who are applying on promotion. This is also open to external candidates with comparable skills or experience.

Specific responsibilities of the role may include:

  • Development of policy and processes to support the delivery of sustainable public services in Northern Ireland
  • Provide briefing to Ministers, Special Advisors and Senior Officials on a regular basis on economic, fiscal or policy related issues
  • Maintaining relationships across the NIO in order to be able to provide fiscal advice on potential policy and funding proposals
  • Strategic mapping of upcoming fiscal events and development of the departmental position on certain aspects of areas of devolved competence and Northern Ireland interest
  • Analysis of HMT and external reports such as those published by the NI Fiscal Council and Fiscal Commission, to support evidence led decision making
  • Representing the Department at Whitehall and Northern Ireland based meetings
  • Building strong relationships with partners in Northern Ireland and in Whitehall to safeguard and enhance delivery of strategic objectives
  • Potential line management of staff at Bands C/D/E

Essential Criteria:

To be successful you must be able to demonstrate that you have:

  • Excellent written and oral communications skills
  • Ability to self-organise, prioritise and pay close attention to detail
  • Ability to work effectively and collaboratively whilst under pressure
  • Experience of briefing senior leaders on complex issues both orally and in writing
  • The ability to develop and maintain effective and responsive relationships with colleagues and stakeholders, and to use your interpersonal skills to achieve results.

Desirable Criteria:

It would be desirable, but not essential, for applicants to have one or more of the following:

  • An understanding of Northern Ireland political and economic issues, and how devolution works
  • Experience working on complex policy development and delivery
  • Previous experience of working with Ministers (or equivalent senior decision-makers) and senior officials
  • Experience of using research and analytical skills to ensure strategic and evidence-based policymaking


We’ll assess you against the following Success Profile behaviours at Level 3 during the selection process:

  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Delivering at Pace
  • Working Together
  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Communicating and Influencing

More information on behaviours and success profiles can be found here.

Please provide a 500 word statement of suitability on how you meet the essential and desirable criteria set out above and 250 word behaviour examples of each of the outlined behaviours above.

Please note that in the event of a large number of applications being received we may run the initial sift on the lead Behaviour, Making Effective Decisions.

At the interview stage we may test one or more of the Success Profile behaviours by asking candidates to deliver a short presentation. If this is the case then the theme of the presentation will be shared with candidates in advance.

Security Clearance

Security clearance to Security Check (SC) level will be required for this post.

Eligibility Sift

An eligibility sift will be carried out on the basis of the information contained in the application form.  It is therefore important that all applicants demonstrate in their application how and to what extent their behaviours are relevant to the above criteria.  Those candidates who do not clearly demonstrate that they meet the experience and behaviours will not be invited to interview.

Pay And Allowances

The successful candidate will adopt the terms and conditions of the NIO for the length of their appointment.

Neither Detached Duty terms nor relocation costs will apply to this post.

Further Information

Further information about the post may be obtained from Joe Gaytten on telephone number (07973 743 538) or e-mail to joe.gaytten@nio.gov.uk .


You can apply for this post through the Civil Service website at: civilservice.gov.uk.  Once logged onto the site go to the civil service jobs page and then search for jobs in the Northern Ireland Office where the application form can be found.

 Additional information received after the closing date will not be considered.  Failure to provide sufficient information in support of an application prior to the closing date will not be considered as grounds for an appeal if an applicant is not shortlisted for interview.

Home Civil Service applicants who, because of disability, need assistance in completing the application form should contact MoJ Shared Services on 0845 010 3512.

All applications for employment are considered strictly on the basis of merit.

This job description should not be taken as constituting conditions of employment.

Please note that due to the high interest in NIO opportunities, feedback cannot be given if you are unsuccessful at sift stage. Feedback is available on request if unsuccessful following interview.

Additional Information

Further information about us

We are a small and friendly department of approximately 203 staff.  Due to our size we are able to offer staff more exposure to ministers and the opportunity to work on a far wider portfolio of responsibilities than might be the case in a larger department.  This creates an interesting, though often challenging, work environment.

Other Benefits

The NIO offers a pleasant, modern work environment which allows consideration of a range of flexible working arrangements which support a good work/ life balance. These include flexible/ alternative working patterns, part-time and job-share options.

Benefits include:

  • interest-free season ticket and bicycle loans
  • Reward & Recognition scheme

Guaranteed Interview Scheme

The Northern Ireland Office operates the Guaranteed Interview Scheme, details of which are attached to the application form for this post.

In the event that we identify more appointable candidates than we currently have posts available, we will hold applicant details on a reserve list for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made. This may include roles at a lower grade. Candidates placed on a reserve list will be informed of this. Those candidates who do not wish to remain on the reserve list should contact MoJ-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@gov.sscl.com to be removed from the reserve list. 

Further information on civil service careers can be found at  www.civil-service-careers.gov.uk

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.  

Appointment to the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. You have the right to complain if you feel a department has breached the requirement of the Recruitment Principles. 

Please contact SSCL (Moj-recruitment-vetting-enquiries@sscl.gse.gov.uk) in the first instance.

If you are not satisfied with the response, you may bring your complaint to the Commission. For further information on bringing a complaint to the Civil Service Commission please visit their web pages:


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