Chris Cooper

What is the Civil Service?

If you’re employed in the Civil Service you’re known as a Civil Servant and your primary role is to impartially serve the current UK government to develop and implement policies. Still seem like a load of jargon? Well basically, Civil Servants are responsible for the impartial running of the country. When a Minister of Parliament comes up with a new policy, the relevant section of the civil service will have to do research, develop and implement that policy. 

Civil Servants Work for a Particular Department, here are some of the most well known:



The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office work around the world to protect British interests and support international aid.

Cabinet Office

The Cabinet Office is the central department for running the entire Civil Service and they also support the current Prime Minister with the running of government.



The Department for International Trade help companies with imports and exports, as well as negotiating international trade deals.


The Ministry of Justice are in charge of the UK justice system. The Crown Prosecution Service are in charge of bringing criminals to justice.



The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy are in charge of making sure that businesses can invest, develop and grow, while providing far places for people to work.

Other Government Departments Include:

The Department for Education, Ministry of Housing and Local Government, Ministry of Defence, Department for Work and Pensions, Department for Transport, Department of Health and Social Care, Department for Food, Environment and Rural Affairs, Department for Digital, Media, Cultural and Sport, HM Revenue and Customs…

Internships and Programmes for those from a diverse background

The Civil Service are really leading the way on diversity and 2020 is the ‘Civil Service Year of Inclusion’! The ‘Civil Service Fast Stream’ graduate programme offers university students from diverse backgrounds the exclusive opportunity to take part in internships programme.

Early Diversity Internship Programme (EDIP)

EDIP gives first year university students from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to spend a week in Whitehall, London shadowing a fast streamer from the graduate programme. As well as shadowing the fast streamer and gaining experience there, students are given the opportunity to attend exclusive development events including a huge opening and closing ceremony. To make the internship accessible, students are supplied with train tickets and a hotel to stay in for the week. Find out how to apply here.

Find out how to apply here.

SDIP Interns

Summer Diversity Internship Programme (SDIP)

SDIP is a six-nine week paid internship programme. This gives students and recent graduates the opportunity to work within a government department and gain valuable work experience, as well as an understanding of working within the Civil Service. Students work on real civil service projects and are judged throughout the programme. Upon successful completion of the programme students are given a grade based on their perfomance. If the grade is high enough, they are given a fast path to the 'Fast Stream' assessment centre.

Find out how to apply here.

Autism Internship

Autism Exchange Programme

In partnership with the charity Ambitious about Autism, the Civil Service offer a paid internship for autistic people. The internship offers the chance to work as part of a civil service department as well as attending networking and development events with other members of the programme and civil servants. The internship takes into account the specific needs of the interns and the department makes the relevant adaptations to make it as inclusive as possible.

Find out more about this internship here.

Civil Service Care Leavers

Care Leavers

The Civil Service offers two care leavers programmes. Administrative Officer - working in an administrative supporting role with a typical salary of £17,400 per year. The other programme is Excecutive Offcer - solving problems, business planning and working on policies with a typical salary of £20, 000 per year.

Find out more about the care leavers programmes here.

Civil Service Young Adult Carers

Young Adult Careers

The Civil Service offer unique opportunities to young adult carers.

Click here to find out more.


The Civil Service offer a ‘Fast Track’ apprenticeship scheme to give people the opportunity to build and develop their skills within the Civil Service. This gives people the toolkit that they need to pursue a career in the Civil Service. 

Civil Service Apprentice