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Project Manager

I’d always been intrigued about working here… I knew there’d be good training… and I thought it’d be an interesting place to develop my project management skills because of the type of work. The recruitment process was a lot slower than I expected. Although the assessment stages went at a reasonable pace, I couldn’t be offered the job until I’d passed the vetting procedure… And it was nearly a year from application to my start date. The culture here’s very different to industry… or other public sector bodies. The main challenge is getting very intelligent and innovative people to work effectively together on a shared goal, in a large organisation. It can test your project management knowledge as well… There are some very complex projects that need the right governance and controls to manage them effectively. On many of our projects, you need to quickly understand the technical delivery and drivers, so you can talk knowledgeably to the customers and delivery teams. That’s not easy in an organisation where people often use acronyms… and where the names of many projects and systems are completely unrelated to what they actually do. One very good aspect of working here is that I’ve had a lot of project management training and have increased my qualifications. There’s also good support from the project management community and mentoring’s available. There are a lot of people who really care about our mission… and working with customers to help them achieve something that protects our nation can be very rewarding. The people are very pleasant to work with too… and I’ve made a lot of friends. There’s a lot more emphasis on personal development than some places I’ve worked in the past. The work/life balance is also a lot better generally… People are very dedicated and want to make a difference, but they still tend to leave work on time… And you certainly can’t take your work home with you!

Departments and Roles at GCHQ