Applying for a job can be overwhelming. This information and advice will help and guide you through the application process.


Finding a job and understanding the advert
Applying for a job on Civil Service Jobs
Shortlisting or ‘sifting’
Assessments, presentations and tests
Outcome and offers
Further information

Finding a job and understanding the advert

We list all our jobs on this website, but in order to apply for a role, you need a Civil Service Jobs account. You can create an account easily with any email address.

Once you have a Civil Service Jobs account, you can set up saved jobs searches and notifications using common criteria, such as location, grade and type of role. You will also be able to apply for roles and save your applications so you can return to them later.

We recruit lots of different professions, and the recruitment process can be slightly different. Make sure you’ve read the job advert thoroughly, as it will list any specific details about the recruitment process, such as the criteria.

Applying for a job on Civil Service Jobs

We recruit lots of different professions, and the recruitment process can be slightly different for each role. Make sure you’ve read the job advert thoroughly, as it will list any specific details about the recruitment process, such as the criteria.

Civil Service recruitment is usually based on ‘Success Profiles’. This is a way for you to tell us about your suitability for a job. This could be based on your behaviours, experience, ability and behaviours. You can find out more about success profiles here.

Again, make sure you check the job advert for the criteria. Remember to submit your application by the deadline.

Shortlisting or ‘sifting’

Once you’ve submitted your application, the recruiting team will look through all of the applications and create a shortlist of the best ones. This is known as ‘sifting’.

If you meet all of the criteria, and you’ve demonstrated your suitability for the role in your application, you may be shortlisted. If you are, you may be invited to an interview – either in person or in a video call. Sometimes we ask you The job advert will have more information on this stage.


You will usually be able to choose a date and time for your interview, by navigating to your application in Civil Service Jobs. The recruiting team will contact you if this is the case.

If you have an interview, make sure you have prepared some examples of your work that help you demonstrate that you meet the criteria in the advert. These may include your technical skills, experience, strengths and behaviours. You could structure your examples using the STAR technique to help you condense and summarise them effectively.

We use Microsoft Teams for video interviews, which you can download and use for free. We’ve got some tips to help you prepare for a video interview.

Assessments, presentations and tests

You might be asked to prepare a presentation as part of your assessment. This will be communicated to you by the recruitment team, and they’ll give you a brief on what to include.

Sometimes we include a test as part of the recruitment process. This might be a technical test, such as a coding challenge, but we’ll inform you about this nearer the time.

Outcome and offers

The recruitment team will be in touch with you to inform you of the decision. If you’re successful, you’ll be given a provisional offer until your pre-employment checks have been completed. If your pre-employment checks come back as clear, you’ll be given a formal offer.

Our recruitment processes follow the principle of selection on merit based on fair and open competition as outlined in the Civil Service Commission Recruitment Principles.

Further information

Diversity and Inclusion

At DWP Digital we value diversity and inclusion and actively encourage and welcome applications from everyone, including those that are underrepresented in our workforce. We promote equality of opportunity in all aspects of employment and a working environment free from discrimination, harassment, bullying and victimisation.

DWP Digital is a Disability Confident Employer, and we want to encourage disabled people to apply for jobs and give them an opportunity to show their skills, talent and abilities throughout the recruitment process. The Department is committed to interviewing all applicants with a disability who meet the minimum standard for the essential criteria as advertised. DWP Digital aim to support you through this process by making the necessary adjustments, wherever possible.

Our aim is to:

  • provide a fully inclusive and accessible recruitment process.
  • be flexible when assessing people, so disabled job applicants have the best opportunity to demonstrate that they can do the job
  • make reasonable adjustments through the recruitment and selection process.

To be considered for an interview under the scheme you must:

  • have a physical or mental impairment or a long-term health condition which has a substantial and long term (over 12 months) adverse effect on your ability to carry out normal day to day activities.
  • demonstrate in your application and testing stages that you meet the minimum job criteria as set out in the advert or personal specification for the post.

We consider visible and non-visible disabilities, neurodiversity or learning differences, chronic medical conditions, or mental ill health. Examples include dyslexia, epilepsy, autism, chronic fatigue, or schizophrenia.

These examples are only illustrative – please refer to the definition of disability under the Equality Act if you have questions about whether you are covered by the Act.

Disability Confidence Scheme

Through the Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) we’re able to offer candidates who meet the minimum criteria of the job description a guaranteed interview.

We aim to encourage more people with disabilities to apply for roles with the Department for Work and Pensions, and to give those candidates the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and experience to do the role. We aim to employ disabled people, and to ensure they have the opportunities to fulfil their potential.

Reasonable adjustments

We want to support you if you need an adjustment in the recruitment process, even if you do not feel you qualify for the Disability Confident Scheme.

We consider visible and non-visible disabilities, neurodiversity or learning differences, chronic medical conditions or mental ill health. Examples include dyslexia, epilepsy, autism, chronic fatigue, diabetes, or schizophrenia.

Some of the adjustments we can offer include:

  • application or interview help
  • a time of day that works for you
  • extra time
  • sign language interpretation
  • advice about assistive technology

We have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes to ensure you are not put at a substantial disadvantage.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

Contact Government Recruitment Service via as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.

Complete the ‘Reasonable Adjustments’ section in the ‘Additional requirements’ page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview or, if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional.

Pre-employment checks

If successful, and transferring from another government department, a criminal record check may be carried out.

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening, subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences.

This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment.

A candidate is not eligible to apply for a role within the Civil Service if the application is made within a five-year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.

In order to process applications without delay, we will send a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service on your behalf. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstance some candidates will want to send their completed forms themselves.

If you want to do this, please advise Government Recruitment Service by emailing, stating the job reference number in the subject heading.

Starting salary for civil servants

Existing civil servants who secure a new role on lateral transfer should maintain their current salary.

Existing civil servants who gain promotion may move to the bottom of the next grade pay scale or 10% increase in salary whichever would be the greater.

Only in very few circumstances (where there have been exceptional skills demonstrated which are in limited supply for example) may existing civil servants be able to negotiate their starting salary if the role has been advertised externally, prior to accepting the post.

Before applying for this vacancy, current employees of DWP should check whether a successful application would result in changes to their terms and conditions of employment, such as mobility, pay, or allowances.

Civil Servants that would transfer into DWP from other government organisations, following successful application, will assume DWP’s terms & conditions of employment current on the day they are posted, unless DWP has stated otherwise in writing.

Childcare vouchers

Any move to DWP from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at

Please note: Appointment to the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with these principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should in the first instance contact DWP by email: HR.BUSINESSASSURANCE@DWP.GOV.UK.

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the Department, you can contact the Civil Service Commission.