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Government Social Research Service

government social research service

Schemes

Government Social Research Service

Identify, analyse and interpret the social trends and research that help influence major decisions

Duration

3 to 5 years

Salary

From £27k

Location

UK-wide

About

A career in the Government Social Research Service (GSR) involves working at the heart of government – ensuring ministers and policy makers have the data to understand social issues, and helping evaluate the policy responses to them. Research underpins all policy made by government on areas such as health, crime, work, pensions, education and transport – in fact everything that affects us as the people of the UK.

 

GSR has members in all the main government departments as well as the devolved administrations and other government bodies.

 

For a full list of the eligible disciplines please visit our FAQ page.

Requirements

  • you need to be eligible to work in the UK
  • you need, or expect to have, a 2:1 or higher in any social science degree subject with a substantial social research methods component, or a relevant post-graduate degree
  • social science degrees include subjects like criminology, human geography, social anthropology, social work, sociology, demographics

What will you experience?

You’ll contribute to the reporting of social trends, the development of government policy and evaluation of how policies make a difference to public services. Your work might involve developing surveys, analysing data, producing statistics, reviewing existing research evidence and working with other analysts in government to provide timely, relevant and robust briefings for policy colleagues and ministers.

What do they say

From the blog

The Fascinating World of Research

Read our blog here

Your progression through the programme

What you’ll learn

Your manager will help you create a development plan to increase your skills and widen your experience. There are formal and informal opportunities to enhance your analytical skills. In your first few years you can expect to move jobs approximately every 2 years, and you may take a secondment to another government department to gain wider analytical expertise.

The GSR fast stream provides a platform for talented and motivated social researchers to reach the highest levels of responsibility in the Civil service. Promotion is based on merit. The first promotion is to Senior Research Officer and you should be ready for this after 2 years or so. Exact timing depends on skills and experience and the availability of Senior Research roles.

After a couple of years as a Senior Research Officer you should have developed the skills and experience needed for promotion to Principal Research Officer. Ideally, you will be keen to take on a post in the Senior Civil Service after gaining a range of experience at this level.

Up to £55k

If you successfully complete the scheme and are promoted, you could earn around £45k to £55k.

What benefits will you enjoy?

benefits

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.

 

In joining the Government Social Research you will become part of a wider social research community in government which opens doors to other opportunities to expand knowledge and analytical experience.

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.

Application process

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Online tests

The online tests consist of 2 questionnaires, an e-tray exercise and a video interview. We recommend you do some practice questions: Situational judgement questions.

You'll only move on to the next test, if you've successfully passed the previous one.

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Assessment centre

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.

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Final selection

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.

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Next Event

The majority of Fast Stream events are held at universities across the UK. These campus events are typically only open to students and alumni of that university. If you are a member of the public wishing to attend an event on campus you will need to first contact the university concerned to see if they will be able to facilitate external guests.  
Fast Stream also attends a number of large careers events. Details of these are all posted on the events section of our website.