Programme Management Office (PMO) Lead – Department for International Development – Darlington

Department for International Development

Job summary

This recruitment is continuing as usual, but candidates should be aware that following the on the changes to some civil service departments, roles will be located in the new Department for Business and Trade.We will provide more information if you are selected for a role. This work remains of high importance to the civil service, and we thank you for your continued interest.

The Department for International Trade has overall responsibility for developing, coordinating, and delivering a new trade and investment policy for the UK, including preparing for and then negotiating Free Trade Agreements and market access deals with non-European Union countries, and promoting UK trade and investment across the world.

The Future Enterprise Resource Planning and Shared Services Provider (FESSP) programme looks to unlock the future potential of Finance and HR service provisions. The programme sets out to upgrade and replace DIT’s current HR, finance, and payroll domestic system in two stages. In the medium-term it will upgrade to a newer on-premise system; and over the long-term it will replace the on-premise system with cloud technology. In addition, FESSP will transform and/or replace our supplier of transactional, back-office activities (shared services currently provided by UKSBS). This will simplify, streamline, and improve the services HR and Finance provide that enable staff to do their jobs.

The FESSP team is also an integral part of the Matrix Programme which is a transformation initiative involving the Cabinet Office, Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, Department for Culture Media and Sport, Department for Education, Department for Health and Social Care, Department for International Trade, Attorney’s General Office and HM Treasury.

The Matrix Programme aims to deliver the Government’s three overarching objectives for shared services:

  • Better experience for all users – intuitive systems that are easy to use and mobile-enabled.
  • Efficiency and value for money – better systems and services which support productivity and seek to reduce costs.
  • Standardised processes and data – support interoperability, making it easier to understand and compare corporate data.
  • Job description

    We are seeking a highly motivated and experienced Programme Management Office (PMO) Lead, to join a fast-paced and complex Programme. The PMO Lead will:

  • Lead the PMO to support the programme and central Matrix programme team in the delivery of business case benefits and outcomes. Champion the use of best practice project and programme management standards and processes.
  • Support the programme leads and the central Matrix programme team in the development of business case with input from specialists as necessary.
  • Work with the Finance Business Partner to forecast, agree and maintain the budgets for programme.
  • Provide expert project and programme management guidance, support and insight, and acts as the source of all project and programme information and metrics.
  • Establish the project and programme processes and standards for managing risks and issues. Provide assurance across the programme on the effectiveness of risks and issue management arrangements.
  • Lead and manage the FESSP programme plan and the supporting DIT aspects of the central Matrix programme plan.
  • Proactively maintain a coherent cross programme picture of programme performance including planning, reporting, delivery, finance, risks, issues, dependency management and change management.
  • Work with the SEO Governance and Reporting Manager to ensure appropriate governance is in place including arranging internal and external reviews as appropriate.
  • Monitor the effectiveness of the programme’s controls and ensure that recommendations from internal and external reviews are acted upon.
  • Establish and implement protocols to manage change within the programme including the updating and configuration of documents as required.
  • Provide direction and guidance across the programme, through the identifying and sharing of best practice project and programme management processes, tools, templates, and industry standards.
  • Identify common capabilities and opportunities for linking up, re-using, and sharing of methods and resources between projects and programmes. Ensure learning from experience is disseminated across the programme.
  • Support the programme in the identification, recruitment, development, deployment and reassignment of resources throughout the project and programme lifecycles.
  • Provide line management and support to the EO Programme Support Officers and SEO Governance and Reporting Manager.
  • Person specification

    Essential Criteria

  • Experience of managing a PMO team, or as a Senior Project Manager on a large/complex project.
  • Experience of developing and maintaining a programme plan within a high-profile technical programme.
  • Experience of successful programme assurance and delivery, including effective risk, issue, assumptions, dependency and budget management.
  • Strong people management skills, with the ability to build capability and motivate team members.
  • Sound communication skills with the ability to influence and build strong stakeholder relationships.
  • Experience in dealing with a broad and complex range of partners, with the confidence to engage with senior officials and a high degree of autonomy where there is ambiguity and change in a project.
  • Have a recognised accreditation in professional project management such as PRINCE2 Practitioner, Managing Successful Programmes Practitioner, Agile Project Management Practitioner P3O Practitioner, Civil Service Project Leadership Programme. 
  • Desirable Criteria

  • Experience in an ERP and Shared Services programme.
  • Personal Attributes & Skills

    We are seeking a highly motivated and experiencedProgramme Management Office (PMO) Lead, to join a fast-paced and complex Programme. The Successful candidate will be a practitioner in crafting project approaches, resources and relationships to achieve successful outcomes and benefits. You will:

  • Be adaptable when applying your knowledge of project management tools and methodologies, capable of crafting a project structure and organisation to meet the Programme’s requirements.
  • Be experienced and credible in dealing with a broad and complex range of partners, with the confidence to engage with senior officials and ministers and a high degree of autonomy where there is ambiguity and change in a project.
  • Be able to apply your skills to the management of risk, with a sound understanding of how this relates to wider strategy.
  • Be an experienced people manager, able to build capability and develop a successful and motivated team. You will be tuned in to the needs of the business, ready to flex structures to ensure that your programme team remains aligned with delivery goals and wider strategy.
  • Have experience of having engaged with assurance reviews, such as the Gateway Review process.
  • Have a recognised accreditation in professional project management such as PRINCE2 Practitioner, Managing Successful Programmes Practitioner, Agile Project Management Practitioner P3O Practitioner, Civil Service Project Leadership Programme. 
  • Hybrid working

    The role will be based in either Darlington or London. You will be asked to express a location preference during the application process.

    Please be aware that this role can only be worked from within the UK and not overseas.

    Informal hybrid working arrangements will be available as agreed with the vacancy manager and in line with the requirements of the role.

    Most DIT employees will be working a hybrid pattern, spending 2-3 days a week (pro rata) in an office, on average. If your office location is London, you will be eligible to receive London weighting.

    Appointments will be made to candidates in merit order based on location preferences.

    Support in applying for our vacancies is available by joining a virtual . These sessions include helpful tips and advice on the recruitment process, from application to interview.


    Have a recognised accreditation in professional project management such as PRINCE2 Practitioner, Managing Successful Programmes Practitioner, Agile Project Management Practitioner P3O Practitioner, Civil Service Project Leadership Programme.


    We’ll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Changing and Improving
  • Delivering at Pace
  • Benefits

  • Learning and development tailored to your role
  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
  • A with an average employer contribution of 27%
  • Things you need to know

    Selection process details

    This vacancy is using , and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.

    Interviews for this vacancy will be conducted virtually. We will, however, consider in-person interviews by exception.

    Please ensure that you check your emails regularly as all updates from us will be sent to you this way.

    Sift will take place week commencing 10/04/2023.

    Interviews will take place week commencing 24/04/2023..

    As part of the application process, you will be asked to complete a CV and a Personal Statement. 

    Please align your CV with previous skills and experience. Maximum word count of 500. Maximum of 2 A4 pages.

    In your personal statement, please explain your motivation for applying for this role and the extent to which you satisfy the essential and desirable requirements of the role. Maximum word count of 750. 

    In the event that there is a high volume of applicants, a short sift will be conducted based on Personal Statement only. Candidates who pass the initial sift may be progressed to a full sift, or progressed straight to assessment/interview.

    Existing Civil Servants and applicants from accredited NDPBs are eligible to apply, but will only be considered on loan basis (Civil Servants) or secondment (accredited NDPBs). Prior agreement to be released on a loan basis must be obtained before commencing the application process. In the case of Civil Servants, the terms of the loan will be agreed between the home and host department and the Civil Servant. This includes grade on return.

    For this role, the Department will not consider sponsoring a visa or issuing a Certificate of Sponsorship. Please note we are unable to offer advice on any Visa and Immigration cases.

    If successful and transferring from another Government Department a criminal record check may be carried out.

    In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service on your behalf.

    However, we recognise in exceptional circumstances some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Government Recruitment Service of your intention by emailing stating the job reference number in the subject heading. 

    New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

    Please note – the successful candidate will be expected to remain in post for a minimum of 18 months before being released for another role.

    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 5 year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.

    The Department for International Trade embraces and values diversity in all forms. We welcome and pride ourselves on the positive impact diversity has on the work we do, and we promote equality of opportunity throughout the organisation.

    Please note – harmonised terms and conditions are attached. Please take time to read the document to determine how these may affect you.

    Further Information

    A reserve list may be held for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made.

    Any move to the Department for Business and Trade 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 

    Reasonable Adjustment

    If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes. 

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

  • Contact Government Recruitment Service via [email protected] as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs
  • Complete the “Assistance required” 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 an interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional
  • If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the ‘Contact point for applicants’ section.

    Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.


    Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.People working with government assets must complete checks.

    Nationality requirements

    This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals
  • Working for the Civil Service

    The sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

    We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s .The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.

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