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Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Our company in a nutshell

Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO)

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) is the lead UK government department handling foreign affairs. We deal with child abduction, conflict prevention, forced marriages, blood diamonds, counter terrorism, climate change, counter proliferation, trade and investment, helping British citizens abroad and much more.

Working towards a safe, just and prosperous world, our high performing teams are a fascinating mix of people and talents. Much of what we do involves developing solutions to delicate problems, such as deciding what to do about a missing holidaymaker, or trying to stop the flow of illegal drugs in the UK.

On our fast stream programme, which is more accessible than many people imagine, you spend your first four weeks in induction. You then work with your manager to determine a training model that fits your plans. This could be anything from a two-day course in managing staff to a two-year MBA.

Your initial two years are spent in London; one year will be spent on policy work (such as handling relations with other countries, dealing with security and defence issues or working to improve human rights abroad), the other on service delivery (such as working in the consular department helping distressed British nationals).

You then travel overseas to work in one of our 200 embassies, high commissions or consulates for two to three years. After that you might want to go for promotion, take another overseas posting or return to London. And because you can state your overseas preferences against a list of available jobs, you never have to go anywhere you don't want to.

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