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Public Sector and Services Graduate Jobs - Careers Guide

Contents :

The public sector employs around 5.6 million people in the UK and has many job opportunities for graduates.

The public sector covers a wide range of services and job roles but most fall under the responsibility of major government departments:

  • Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS)TOP ^- environmental and product safety, innovation and skills (including higher education) and consumer protection.

  • Department of Culture, Media and SportTOP ^- monuments and statues, gambling and licensing, and major sporting events.

  • Department of Energy and Climate ChangeTOP ^- energy efficiency and radioactive contamination.

  • Department of Environment, Food and Rural AffairsTOP ^- sites of specific interest, pollution, food safety, animal care, and pest control.

  • Department for EducationTOP ^- safeguarding children, the curriculum, teacher training, adoption and fostering.

  • Department of HealthTOP ^- healthcare trusts, controlled drugs, community care and care of persons with a disability.

  • Department of TransportTOP ^- rail and waterways, highways, public transport, Transport for London, and traffic management.

  • Department of Work and PensionsTOP ^- child support, benefits, social security, explosions and hazards.

  • Food Standards AgencyTOP ^- fish sustainability, hygiene, and food labelling.

  • HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)TOP ^- income tax, money laundering, and value-added tax (VAT).

  • Home OfficeTOP ^-immigration and border control, police, and national security.

  • Ministry of Justice - TOP ^data protection, marriage and civil partnership, youth offending, and the coroner's office.

As well as these government departments there are a range of agencies that deliver services and products on behalf of government departments.

The public sector has always been recognised as providing good training, equal opportunities policies and benefits and pensions.

What degree do I need?TOP ^

The public sector is so wide reaching that there are opportunities for graduates from most degree subjects. Some specialist areas such as teaching and social work require a specific degree type.

What skills do I need for a job in the public sector?TOP ^

Each different type of public sector job will require its own specific skill set but employers across the sector will be looking for a similar set of soft skills in recruiting staff.

Some of the skills that public sector recruiters might look for are:

Graduates in many degree disciplines will have the necessary skills for working in public sector. Degrees offer a good set of skills in logical thought, presentation, analysis and communication all of which are important in finance.

What graduate public sector job can I do?TOP ^

The public sector covers a wide range of graduate jobs including the armed forces, emergency services and teaching. Here are some examples of the wide range of graduate job opportunities in the public sector:

  • Teacher
  • Social worker
  • Immigration officer
  • Probation worker
  • Trading Standards officer
  • Civil servant
  • Civil Service administrator
  • Local government officer
  • Counsellor

Average public sector salariesTOP ^

Graduates entering the public sector should expect a wide variety of different starting salaries depending on the department and job role.

Those entering the Civil Service Fast Stream will earn between £25,000 and £27,000 as a starting salary with the potential to rise to around £45,000 after five years.

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