Jobs on offer – Government in need of “digital” talent

By Tony Collins

Some parts of government may be shrinking but there’s jobs on offer in the Government Digital Service.

Mike Bracken, the Cabinet Office’s Executive Director for Digital, says the Government is “badly in need of the talent to engineer ourselves out of our torpor”.

“We are hiring”, he says. His team have jobs in development, product management, interaction design, web ops, technology architecture and digital engagement.  Salaries are between £59k and £90k.

Says Bracken: “Over the last 15 years or more, across Government we have engineered digital products and services using risk aversion and long-term programme management as our guiding principles.

“Now that it is clear that rapid, user-led development using open source technologies, agile approaches to delivery and cloud-based infrastructure is the order of the day, we find ourselves badly in need of the talent to engineer ourselves out of our torpor.

“In short, with long-term contracts giving programme managers and departments only one lever to pull in order to change or create digital services, it’s never been more important that there is a choice within Government.

“While there have been a few raised eyebrows at hiring in these straitened times, let me be clear that we need digital talent all across Government. In policy, legal, procurement and service delivery, deep digital experience in Government is scarce.

“So I would recommend that we see this drive not just a one-off recruitment campaign for GDS, but the start of the digital transformation of all Government services. As well as hiring, I spend large amounts of my time looking to help transform existing people and processes.

Bracken was appointed the Government’s new Executive Director for Digital on 5 July 2011.

Government Digital Service

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One response to “Jobs on offer – Government in need of “digital” talent

  1. Now that it is clear that rapid, user-led development using open source technologies, agile approaches to delivery and cloud-based infrastructure is the order of the day …

    The Devil’s Advocate writes – take good care of your CV:

    Mr Bracken suggests that a “cloud-based infrastructure” is widely accepted to be appropriate. It is “clear”, he says, that that “is the order of the day”.

    It’s worth testing that assumption.

    The OECD tested it and said:

    … cloud computing creates security problems in the form of loss of confidentiality if authentication is not robust and loss of service if internet connectivity is unavailable or the supplier is in financial difficulties …

    ENISA also tested it and said:

    … its adoption should be limited to non-sensitive or non-critical applications and in the context of a defined strategy for cloud adoption which should include a clear exit strategy …

    “Cloud” is not an open and shut case. You need robust authentication, you need alternative arrangements in case of loss of connectivity and you need a clear exit strategy. And CESG have a few other points to add in their RSDOPS reports here and here.

    Will the cost of making the G-Cloud reliable and secure outweigh the savings made by firing thousands of frontline public servants?

    Will the nine or ten million people in the UK who have still never used the web join in the cloud? Or will they be excluded from public services?

    And what’s wrong with the web access to public services we already have, viz. the UK Government Gateway? Why do we need another one? If people won’t or can’t use the Gateway, why should they use the Cloud?

    Before all the eager beavers roll up to attend the G-Cloud recruitment party, they might be well-advised to consider what it will look like on their CVs if, in a few years’ and a few billion pounds’ time, “digital by default” has gone the same way as Transformational Government. That is, nowhere.

    Nowhere, because the other departments of state ignore the call of the Cabinet Office. They exercise their right to do so and simply refuse to share their data and other resources.

    That’s what they’ve done in the past. That, arguably, is the order of the day.

    Like

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