Secondments and loans

Please note that due to Covid-19, we are not offering any international secondments during this period. However, we do still encourage you to register interest for future availability.

The secondments and opportunities are open to civil servants. You need to direct any questions to the department advertising the post.

Submit a vacancy

You must ensure that you have followed your departmental HR process and Civil Service Resourcing procedures before submitting a vacancy to us.

To advertise a short term secondment via GCS, complete this template (Word 39KB) and send it to

GCS secondments and temporary opportunities

Deputy Head of Communications and Engagement (1 year) – Cabinet Office

  • Organisation: Cabinet Office
  • Unit name: Office for Veterans’ Affairs
  • Grade: Senior Information Officer (SIO; Senior Executive Officer equivalent)
  • Grade 7 (G7)
  • Job title: Deputy Head of Communications and Engagement
  • Location: Currently remote working. Usual office location 1 Horse Guards Road, SW1A 2HQ
  • Salary range: Band A £52,500 – £60,635
  • Closing date: Thursday 28 May
  • Available on promotion: Available on temporary promotion to G7 for a secondment / loan of one year, with potential to extend / of permanence

Vacancy description:

We have an exciting opportunity for a talented G7 (or SIO on temporary promotion) to join the Office for Veterans’ Affairs (OVA) as Deputy Head of Communications and Engagement.

There are around 2.4m Armed Forces veterans in the UK. We lead the Government’s efforts to realise an ambitious vision to make the UK the best place to be a veteran anywhere in the world.

This is an exciting time to join the new Office for Veterans Affairs as it builds its team, develops its role within Government and drives the delivery of better outcomes for veterans across a huge spectrum of areas including mental health, employment and housing.

If you want to play a key role in celebrating and showcasing the brilliant contributions veterans make to society after leaving service then we want to hear from you.

You will support the Head of Communications with strategic communications and activities that are of an excellent standard and help build OVA’s reputation.

The successful applicant will be experienced in leading on the development, planning and co-ordination of communication strategies across a range of channels including paid, low and no cost and digital.

This is a new role with excellent scope (and budget) for a senior strategic communications professional to develop communications campaigns, many of which will have a public and partner element, using ideas and creativity to help shift the narrative about veterans.

Job profile:

Responsibilities will include

  • Working with policy colleagues and the Cabinet Office news, digital and external affairs teams to plan, coordinate, develop and implement high calibre communications and engagement activities.
  • Developing effective mechanisms to monitor and evaluate our activities and campaigns.
  • Leading on the production and implementation of stakeholder, influencer and partner relationship management plans for OVA.
  • Playing a significant role in helping scope and develop options for a public facing campaign to challenge negative perceptions of veterans, including increasing the insight into our audiences and helping define the OVA brand.
  • Producing a variety of communications materials and content and distributing these through a range of available channels.
  • Manage suppliers and agencies as required, including reviewing their performance and holding them to account for meeting targets.
  • Navigating work across other Government departments and partners ensuring comms plans are aligned to wider UK Government objectives and are attuned to political nuances.
  • Building relationships with senior stakeholders and advising how strategic communications can best support the business needs in line with departmental priorities and objectives.
  • Deputising for and supporting the Head of Communications as required.

Person specification:


  • Experienced in successfully creating and implementing a wide range of communications strategies, and using multiple communications channels, including low cost and digital
  • A solid grasp of using communication evaluation techniques and methods, with good analytical skills and knowledge of how to use data to track communications effectiveness and shape future approaches.
  • Experience of commissioning and managing external creative agencies and managing the associated financial and procurement processes to deliver best value.
  • Accustomed to working with Ministers and senior officials in government.
  • Excellent oral communications and negotiation skills, having worked with with senior leaders to understand business requirements and able to develop trusted and authoritative two-way relationships.
  • Creativity and the ability to generate and respond to new ideas and concepts.
  • First rate writing skills with the ability to draft convincingly for a range of audiences.
  • Strong planning and organisational skills, with the ability to manage a varied and pressurised workload in a changeable environment.
  • Good understanding of political/news landscape – can advise on risks and reputational issues and demonstrate political awareness when planning communications activity


  • Experience in using / advising on social media channels to increase audience reach and foster genuine engagement
  • Broad knowledge of changing communications trends and techniques
  • Experience of developing partnerships and working with social media influencers to support campaigns.

How to Apply:

For more information contact:

UK Aid Brand Manager (12 to 15 months) – Department for International Development (DFID)

  • Organisation: Department for International Development
  • Unit name: Communications Division
  • Grade : Senior Information Officer (SIO)
  • Job title: UK Aid Brand Manager
  • Location: 22 Whitehall, London SW1A 2EG (currently working from home)
  • Salary range: £41,000
  • Closing date: Friday 5 June 2020
  • Available on promotion: Yes

Vacancy description

The Department for International Development (DFID) is looking to recruit a UK Aid Brand Manager for a 12-15 month secondment (with the option to extend) from July 2020. This is a great opportunity for an SIO or high-performing IO on T/P.
DFID operates in some of the world’s most challenging environments and leads the UK’s efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Currently, DFID is playing a crucial role in the UK’s response to coronavirus as we use our foreign aid budget and British expertise to stop the spread, find a vaccine and save lives around the world, including in the UK.

The Communications Division’s role is to communicate what the UK’s international development work is achieving, to demonstrate how it is firmly in the UK’s interest, and how we are delivering the best value for UK taxpayers.

Effective and strategic use of the UK aid brand is central to how we are building the UK’s reputation overseas and support for our work at home. This position will play a vital role in achieving the division’s objectives.

We are looking for an experienced brand manager to join our Campaigns and Marketing team at our Communications Division headquarters in Whitehall (currently home-based).

Job profile

Key responsibilities:

  • Identifying new opportunities to use the brand in the UK and overseas, including maximising opportunities for brand awareness through our partnership work
  • Act as the primary source of advice to DFID, other Departments and our partners on the strategic implementation of our brand, as set out in DFID’s programme rules and brand guidelines.
  • Support other government departments on the use of UK aid and associated brands, including applying it to joint programmes with DFID, growing relationships across government to result in positive outcomes.
  • Working with our insight and evaluation team, to monitor brand awareness in the UK and the impact of branding overseas and as a result look at what we could do differently to further grow the brand.

Person specification:

You need to be able to show, through your application, that you have the skills, and personal qualities for this post.

Personal qualities and skills required:

  • Applicants should have a background in branding, marketing, or public engagement.
  • Experience of growing a brand in creative ways through partnerships while operating in a sensitive context.
  • Comfortable in a fast-paced, changing environment. Can juggle multiple priorities concurrently.
  • Creative mindset and eye for visual design.
  • Strong relationship builder – works well with others and has strong influencing skills.

How to Apply

  • For Expressions of Interest (EoI) or to request further information about this role please contact Caroline Daniels, Acting Head of Campaigns, Communications Division, DFID (Email:, Tel: 07551680693) by Friday 5 June.
  • We will need no more than 500 words on why you would like to be considered for this temporary position and how you demonstrate the personal qualities and skills required. Please also include your CV. This will be followed by an interview to assess skills and experience against the job specification.

International secondments

Coronavirus (COVID-19) notice

Please note that due to COVID-19, we are not offering any international secondments during this period. However, we do still encourage you to register interest for future availability.

The GCS Knowledge & Capability Unit in collaboration with FCO brings together the best of GCS expertise to provide governments and public institutions around the world with the tools and training they need to develop effective and efficient communications.

We offer professional development opportunities to seconded GCS staff supporting international governments in country. A secondment to the Unit will offer you the chance to apply and develop your skills on demanding and worthwhile projects in support of HMG’s objectives overseas.

To register your interest complete this online form, and email us for more information.

Page last updated 22 May 2020.