Profile: The Civil Service

Civil Service looks for people with the potential to take on high-level responsibilities

Graduates have a crucial role in policy and strategy formulation in the Civil Service. Photograph: iStockphoto/Getty Images

Graduates have a crucial role in policy and strategy formulation in the Civil Service. Photograph: iStockphoto/Getty Images

 

The Civil Service is now one of the biggest employers of high-quality graduates with more than 200 graduates annually taking up roles in diverse areas including the departments of finance, Taoiseach, public expenditure and reform, health, and in the diplomatic stream in foreign affairs. They also join as trainee auditors in the Office of Comptroller and Auditor General, and graduate economists in the government’s economic and evaluation service.

Graduates have a crucial role in policy and strategy formulation across economic, financial, international, environmental and social issues. Initially they are invited to log on to publicjobs.ie where a questionnaire encourages entrants to see how their interests, skills and experiences match the requirements of the jobs.

Michelle Noone of gradpublicjobs.ie said the Civil Service is looking for people with the potential to take on high-level responsibilities in the management of public services and the analysis of public policy issues. There are opportunities for people coming from different disciplines and backgrounds and as the business, economic and social environment becomes more complex and demanding, there is an increasing need to ensure a wider range of skills are available within departments and offices.

Now in its third year, the Civil Service graduate development programme provides new graduate entrants with the skills and knowledge required to equip them in their varied roles in the Civil Service. As part of this programme, entrants have the opportunity to secure practical and professionally valuable learning. The graduate programme engages and develops participants’ skills through a combination of project-based, interactive and independent learning as well as structured training.

Special features of the programme include an innovation project where participants are invited to complete a structured mentoring programme, and the establishment of a graduate network, which is managed by graduates who organise a variety of peer learning and informal networking events throughout the year

Cillian McBride, one of the co-ordinators of the programme, said new graduate entrants are provided with ongoing support to ensure they feel equipped to manage the challenges of their new working environment and roles.

“This experience aims to foster independent analytical thinking and decision making, develop relationships and interpersonal skills, and nurture strategic thinking and leadership potential,” he said.