Civil Service Executive Officer

Job Description:

Civil Service executive officers work in government departments that develop policies and provide services to the public.

Job Category:
Government & Public Services

What you will do:

What you’ll do will depend on your job role and the government department you work in. Typically, in your day to day tasks you could:

  • manage a team
  • train staff
  • apply government plans to public services
  • prepare and present reports
  • analyse data
  • communicate with the public
  • give advice to government representatives
  • manage a budget
  • handle a caseload
  • update files


You’ll need:

  • customer service skills
  • administration skills
  • business management skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

As well as:

  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail (organisational skills)
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • the ability to use your initiative (ambition)
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

To become a Civil Service Executive Officer, specific subjects or qualifications are generally not required. However, strong literacy, numeracy, and communication skills are essential for this role. Here are some subjects that can be beneficial when pursuing a career as a Civil Service Executive Officer:

  1. English Language: Excellent written and verbal communication skills are essential because executive officers often draft reports, policies, and correspondence. Effective communication with colleagues, superiors, and the public is crucial.
  2. Mathematics (Maths): Basic numeracy skills are important for tasks such as budgeting, data analysis, and financial management.
  3. Information and Communication Technology (ICT): Proficiency in using computers, software, and office applications is vital. Executive officers rely on technology for tasks like data management and report generation.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly
  • a graduate training scheme


You could apply to join the Civil Service after doing a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree, although a university qualification is not essential.

Most subjects are accepted but public administration may offer a good general introduction to this area of work.


You could do a Civil Service higher or degree apprenticeship.

The apprenticeship qualification you work towards will depend on the role and business area you work in.


You could start as an administrative officer. After gaining experience, you could apply for a post as an executive officer when vacancies become available.

Direct Application

You can apply directly for jobs. You’ll be expected to have relevant work or life experience to do this.

You’ll be assessed on your skills, knowledge and behaviours that fit in with the values of the Civil Service, as part of the application process.

Other Routes

Your degree can be in any subject, though some Civil Service departments may prefer a degree in a subject that is relevant to their work, for example science and engineering.

Working Hours and Environment:

A typical week consists of 37-40 hours of work. You could be required to work evenings/weekends/bank holidays on shifts.

You could work in an office.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, there’s often the opportunity to apply for jobs in different departments.

There is a clear promotion structure in the Civil Service.