You might think you already know MI6 or that you already know what an Intelligence Officer does. But actually, our work isn’t about high-speed chases or high-stakes poker. It’s not danger, drama and dry martinis. It’s about joining an inclusive, supportive team that works together to gather, deliver and use intelligence that helps people all over the world.
It’s genuinely fascinating and rewarding work, every day. You could be working with government departments to identify intelligence requirements. Or planning and managing an intelligence gathering operation. Meeting contacts at home or overseas with information we need. Or reporting that intelligence back to our customers in the UK government.
It’s work that keeps the UK safe – and it’s work where you’ll be safe too. You might meet a contact for a chat in a café. Or gather intelligence online at our offices. In fact, your work will look much like any other office role – and like any other job, you’ll usually be contactable, if your family and friends need you.
And whilst we keep you protected, we offer brilliant progression and support too. Your initial training course will help you get ready, exploring more than one role and building a range of strengths. Then, you’ll join one of our operational teams and continue your development. You’ll broaden different skills, maybe even learn a new language or two, and along the way you’ll find options to specialise in your field – and to move into team leadership and management too, if that’s something you’re interested in.
We’re not looking for action heroes here: we’re looking for people with an interest in the world around them; who can take a wealth of information and enjoy making sense of it. In short, we want people of every background who bring real intellectual curiosity.
At the same time, you’re also a people person: you build good relationships with those around you, putting yourself in their shoes and looking to understand how they feel.
Ultimately, the skills we’re looking for are the ones you use every day – and not just at work. Maybe your people skills come from volunteering. From a hobby. From life at home. Maybe you can coach your friends through a tricky escape room, or you know just how to calm your kids down. Those are just the kind of people skills we need.
Along with a starting salary of £35,534, you will receive other benefits including:
- 25 days annual leave (rising to 30 days after 5 years’ service) and 10.5 public and privilege holidays
- Financial support for learning and development
- Interest free season ticket loan
- Excellent pension scheme
- Cycle to work scheme
- Subsidised gym, restaurant, and coffee bar
We also encourage flexible working and offer part-time working, compressed hours and job sharing where possible.
Despite what films and TV might tell you, there are no lone wolves here. You’re part of a diverse and inclusive community of support. There are staff networks that can provide advice, support and friendship across many different interests, including ones for gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, faith and working parents. We’ve even got social events from bake-offs to photography competitions. It all means you can bring your whole self to work and form lasting friendships too – both with your immediate team and the wider organisation around you.
We’re a global organisation that represents and defends the UK’s interests. To do that, we need a team that truly represents the UK. So, naturally, Diversity and Inclusion is at the top of our agenda. It’s essential that we have a diverse workforce and provide an inclusive environment.
As well as supporting you throughout the recruitment process, including accommodating a range of adjustments, we’ll ensure you have the right support throughout your career. We have a dedicated disability network group, which aims to build awareness of disability through internal talks, activities, and social events. And of course, because we foster a supportive community, you’ll always have the support of your manager and the team around you too.
We’re also proud to be ‘Disability Confident’ and have achieved ‘Leader’ status within the Department for Work and Pension’s scheme. We ensure that a fair and proportionate number of disabled applicants that meet the minimum criteria for this position will be offered an interview. To secure an interview for this role, the minimum criteria (in order of application process) are:
- Eligibility Questions: you will be asked a series of questions relating to this vacancy. If you meet the criteria here, you will be invited to complete an initial application.
- Online Situational Judgement Test: you will be required to reach the pass mark set for the situational judgement test.
If you successfully pass these tests and application form sift, you will be invited to a virtual interview session. This is our Offer of Interview.
Our commitment demonstrates the importance we place on equal opportunities and it means that we also:
- Accommodate all reasonable adjustments
- Allow extra time during selection ‘tests’
- Ensure accessible formats are available
- Offer alternative ways of carrying out different recruitment processes
- Provide equipment where requested
- Give candidates a telephone number or email address to contact us with any queries throughout the process.
Our recruitment process with a brief overview of each stage, in order:
- Initial questions: These check you meet the criteria (your nationality, parents nationality, time lived in UK, degree level). If you do, we’ll invite you to begin an application. The first step will require you to create a login or log into an existing account.
- Initial application: This will ask you about MI6 and contain some basic eligibility questions.
- Online Situational Judgement Test: This is designed to explore how you think and make decisions, in situations relevant to our roles. It’s all hypothetical, exploring our values and behaviours, and you won’t need any prior knowledge of us or our policies to answer the questions.
- Full Application: Here, we’ll ask you for details around your academic achievements, employment and life experiences, languages spoken, IT skills, and of course your motivation for joining MI6. Please ensure the details are as accurate as possible. It can be time-consuming to provide all the information we need, but it is important for this stage of the process. It’s important to know though that we don’t expect you to come with every skill under the sun: as long as you’ve got intellectual curiosity and people skills, you’ve got potential, and we can train you in what we need.
- Online assessments: After a successful application, you’ll be invited to complete an online Computer Analysis Test (CAT) which looks at your ability to problem-solve and analyse a number of documents.
- Virtual interview: This gives you the chance to demonstrate some of the key attributes and aptitudes essential to this role. There will also be some competency-based questions: if you are unfamiliar with these, you can familiarise yourself with the Civil Service competency framework guidance here.
- Online written exercise: Here, you’ll be presented with a fictional scenario where we’ll explore your ability to problem-solve, take decisions, communicate, influence and analyse information.
- One day-assessment centre: This is held in London and occasionally in other regional locations. You’ll try out various scenarios and roleplays where we’ll assess your skills in working with others, building relationships, collaborating, influencing, integrity and learning. If you live outside the M25 you can claim for the cost of your travel and 1 night’s hotel if required. Please ask for further details or before booking.
- Final Interview Day: Your last step of the process, where you’ll take on psychometric tests and interviews.
- Conditional Offer: If you’re successful in your final interviews, we’ll give you a conditional offer – which means you’ll join us if you successfully complete vetting, which you can read more about below.
IMPORTANT: You must successfully pass each stage of the process in order to progress to the next. We are unable offer feedback should you not succeed at any stage of the recruitment process.
Please note your application may take around 9 – 12 months to process including vetting, so we advise you continue any current employment until you have received your final job offer.
Vetting is something everyone in the UK Intelligence Community goes through: it’s a thorough and confidential process and can take some time. We need to understand whether the UK’s secrets will be safe with you, and to do this we really need to get to know you as a person. We understand that everyone is different, from our backgrounds to our lived experiences – it’s those different perspectives that make us a stronger team.
When it comes to your vetting interview, we‘re professional, thorough and compassionate. There are no right or wrong answers, just be honest and be yourself. You can ask questions and find out more about what it means to hold DV clearance. When you join us, we’ll continue working with you to maintain your clearance. We do this in a sensitive, confidential and professional way.
You must have a minimum of a 2:2 degree or higher. Undergraduates must expect their confirmed degree result within 12 months of their application date, and we can’t accept an application earlier than that.
You must also be a born or naturalised British Citizen, and one of your parents must be a British Citizen or have substantial ties to the UK. Candidates must normally have been resident in the UK for seven out of the last ten years. This is particularly important if you were born outside of the UK. You will nonetheless be considered if you have, for example, served overseas with HM Forces or in some other official capacity as a representative of Her Majesty’s Government, studied abroad, or lived overseas with your parents.
Please note, you should only launch your application from within the UK. If you are based overseas, you should wait until you visit the UK to launch an application. Further information on our eligibility criteria can be found on the Applying section.
Please note, if you are an employee of a Central Government Department or are currently serving in the Armed Forces (excluding reservists), you must not use this method to apply. If possible, you should contact the organisation directly and apply during specific application windows (usually scheduled for August and March). If you do not have direct access, you can complete a Registration of Interest form here, and we will contact you in time for the next application window.
At MI6 diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission. To protect the UK, we need a truly diverse workforce that reflects the society we serve. This includes diversity in every sense of the word: those with different backgrounds, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, ways of thinking and those with disabilities or neurodiverse conditions. We therefore welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including those from groups that are under-represented in our workforce.
Discretion is vital. You should not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member. Please note, you should only launch your application from within the UK. If you are based overseas, you should wait until you visit the UK to launch an application. Applying from outside the UK will impact on our ability to progress your application. Further information on our eligibility criteria can be found on the ‘How to Apply’ section.
Please be aware that we withhold the right to bring forward the closing date for this role from the original closing date once a certain number of applications have been received. Please be mindful of this and submit your application at your earliest convenience to avoid disappointment.