Executive Recruitment
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Working Here

If you want a truly varied, fulfilling career that can push you to new levels, then DfT and the Civil Service is the place for you. We’re a modern, inclusive and high-performing employer that makes sure everyone gets the opportunity to thrive.

These roles will be based across London, Birmingham and Leeds.

Want to know what it's really like working at DfT? Hear what our colleagues have to say in the testimonial videos below.

Nathan Phillips, Director of Airports and Infrastructure

Tirth Benning, Deputy Director of Financial Accounting and Control

Case Studies

Lucy Bird, Director Transport Security, Resilience & Response

What does your day-to-day role look like?

No two days are ever the same. My teams are dealing with a variety of issues at any one time: responding to an event that has impacted on transport ( e.g. COVID-19, bad weather, industrial action, a failed transport operator, a terrorist attack); determining our policy response to changing threats (whether national security related or civil contingency type things); and undertaking scientific and research analysis to understand the way in which threats to transport can be mitigated. Most recently, we have been running the DfT operations centre for COVID-19 and have managed to do that completely virtually. All of those things require considerable engagement across government as well as different parts of the department, along with the need to provide leadership in a really uncertain environment. We have had to be agile in how we deliver and what we deliver, reprioritising as events have shaped the environment around us.

What do you enjoy about your job?

The variety! And the pace! But at its heart, the sense of team and having a common endeavour, whether that be within my directorate, within the department or across the security and resilience community. Transport impacts on every citizen in the UK in some way – not something that any of us think about when it is working as planned, but when there is disruption it matters.

What type of culture is there in your department and team?

DfT is a very friendly and non-hierarchical place to work. People pitch in to support colleagues – I see that every time we have to mount a response and ask for volunteers to staff the Ops centre. Our engagement scores are always pretty good in the people survey and in our recent pulse survey (in the middle of the COVID-19 response) they rose 6%! Where there are things that can be improved, there is a real drive and determination to do so in an inclusive way. Everyone has a voice, there are regular all staff events and a large number of staff network groups. The emphasis on learning and development is also really impressive, with a great programme for all grades.

What have you found challenging about your role?

I have found it hard not being in the office and not being with my teams. I have realised how much I pick up by osmosis - how people are feeling, what is worrying them, new work issues. So being an effective leader and a manager requires much more of us at the moment. And juggling the number of competing priorities for my time is a perennial struggle! With such a varied portfolio, there are inevitably lots of meetings. However, I’m still “leaving work” each day at a reasonable time, and have just returned to my usual flexible working pattern.

Haroona Chughtai – Deputy Director Future EU Roads Relationships, Dept for Transport

I joined the Civil Service as an Executive Officer working for Defra just after the foot and mouth outbreak.   I moved swiftly to work directly for ministers as a private secretary and experienced the workings of both Houses of Parliament close up, which as a politics graduate was a fantastic role. After three years of various roles of working with ministers, I moved on promotion to work for the Cabinet Office and Number 10. Working at the centre of Government was an amazing experience and provided an opportunity to experience working with a number of government departments to develop and deliver policy at pace. I then returned to Defra to work on various environmental policy areas  and slowed my career down for a few years to focus on my two children. 

To develop my leadership skills, I secured a place on the META leadership programme for BAME senior managers which seeks to develop the toolkit for securing a position in the Senior Civil Service.  As part of this I joined the Department for Transport for a short-term project working on High Speed 2, and was asked to stay.

I moved on promotion to work in Local Transport and also secured a place on the Future Leaders Scheme, a cross Whitehall talent programme to develop leadership theory and skills.  After graduating from the FLS, I applied for an SCS role and was successful and developed and led the team focusing on Maritime international trade and lead the maritime EU negotiations and exit related policy; to ensure that trade continued to flow after we had left the EU.   After three and a half years of developing my trade expertise, and having worked on Covid 19 response, as part of the team ensuring that British Nationals were repatriated from cruise ships; I have moved to my current role – leading a team to ensure traffic management in Kent is effective post transition to enable trade to keep flowing.

I have found the Civil Service to be a great place to work - it encourages diversity, respects your work life balance and motivates you to develop your potential.