Put economics at the heart of the policy-making process, to influence and shape the government’s response to some of the key issues of the day
3 to 5 years
Being a government economist is not just a question of analysing figures. It is work that sees you closely involved in important current issues and helping shape government policy. We are the UK’s largest recruiter of economists, with over 1,400 professionals across government in more than 30 departments and agencies.
You can also apply for the Diplomatic Service (Economist) scheme provided you meet the requirements for the Diplomatic service.
You'll have the chance to develop your expertise through postings in areas such as macro-economic modelling, competition policy, international financial issues, labour market trends, taxation, housing benefits, local government finance, public health and criminal justice.
You could be working for a wide range of government departments or agencies and sometimes even overseas. There's also the option to join the Diplomatic Service as an economist.
The type of economics used will vary hugely. Wherever a GES Fast Streamer might end up in 10 years, they would be leading a team that puts economics at the heart of the policy-making process.
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You’ll be allocated a department for your first posting only for a minimum of 2 years. After that it’s up to you and your manager how often you move, and where to. If we cannot allocate you to one of your preferred departments, we allocate you to your preferred location.
It is also worth remembering that starting your career in a department which is not your first choice can be very rewarding, particularly in terms of broadening your experience and furthering your career.
You may also find it useful to talk to your mentor for more advice. If there is a particular department you are interested in moving to, you may wish to speak to your mentor to see what opportunities are available.
As a government economist, you could work in areas such as macroeconomic modeling; competition policy; international financial issues; labour market trends; taxation; housing benefits; local government finance; public health and criminal justice, to name but a few.
This posting has been a fantastic way of understanding how senior officials and ministers operate and how my daily work feeds into their decision-making.
One of the great advantages of the Fast Stream is being able to try out roles in different areas in order to understand which topics and policy areas best suit you.
Receiving regular requests from high profile institutions like No. 10 makes me feel like I’m able to help influence policy and shape public opinion, whilst being stretched and increasing my competence.
My time at the ONS has been extremely positive both socially and career-wise, and I’m looking forward to grow as an economist within the organisation.
The GES actively encourages continuous professional development. Chief economists have agreed that the guideline for CPD is 100 hours per year. At least 50 hours of this must be spent on economics.
Your development will be closely monitored by your line manager who will provide on-the-job coaching and will discuss with you, and advise on training and broader development. New assistant economists are expected to attend a one-day induction course, a one-day course on economic appraisal and a one-day course on impact assessment.
Up to £55k
If you successfully complete the scheme and are promoted, you'll earn around £45k to £55k.
You’ll have a unique chance to work on issues that really matter, and to gain experience internally and externally. It’s the best foundation for promotion and long-term progression.
Promotion and successful completion of the scheme will see you earn around £45k to £55k, while other benefits include the Civil Service pension scheme, professional qualifications, flexible working, season ticket loans, sports and social activities, childcare assistance and more.
If you pass the online tests, you'll be invited to complete an Application Form and this will be sifted by the scheme owner. If successful at the sift, then you will be invited to attend a half-day assessment at one of our assessment centres in either London or Newcastle.
We'll ask you to take part in a series of exercises. This includes a leadership exercise, a group exercise and an analysis exercise
If you are successful at the assessment centre, you’ll be invited to take part in a final selection process.
The specialist assessments will assess your broad capabilities and motivation to be part of the profession you’ve chosen. You’ll be sent detailed guidance before the assessment to explain what is involved.