Press Release

GCHQ’s Future Leaders Programme - a family-friendly, flexible approach to protecting the nation

Last Updated: 19 Nov 2015
GCHQ launches a programme to identify, train and develop tomorrow’s leaders.

Press Release - 19 Nov 2015

GCHQ, one of the three UK intelligence and security agencies, has launched a programme to identify, train and develop tomorrow’s leaders.

Based at GCHQ’s iconic Cheltenham headquarters, the five-year Future Leaders training programme provides a truly unique opportunity. Future leaders on the programme will enjoy the flexibility to develop a work pattern that suits their personal lives.

GCHQ offers a range of family-friendly policies such as childcare vouchers and a healthy work/life balance supported by genuinely flexible working hours. The Cheltenham headquarters – nicknamed the Doughnut – includes a deli bar, restaurant and coffee shops. It’s a collaborative and inclusive work environment where people’s ideas and opinions are listened to and acted upon.

The programme offers people the opportunity to test their skills and learn new ones on real-life assignments in different areas of GCHQ. They will be supported with high quality training and access to an experienced mentor throughout the programme. It promises to be challenging and intensive – as potential leaders they could be liaising with Whitehall officials, talking to industry experts and then mentoring junior trainees all in one day.

GCHQ helps to protect the UK from cyber attacks, serious criminals and terrorists, but the programme isn’t just for people with a technological background. As future leaders, their ability to get on with others and communicate well, together with a natural appetite for learning new skills, is just as important.

To qualify for the Future Leaders Programme, applicants will need at least a 2:2 honours degree in any subject or a post-graduate certificate in a management or business subject. They should be keen to contribute to the UK’s security and prosperity and will ideally have an interest in political, technological or security issues. Most of all, they will be natural leaders – people who stand out from the crowd.

GCHQ’s Head of Senior Talent said: "The Future Leaders Programme is essential to GCHQ’s ongoing success. As we combat increasingly sophisticated attacks against the UK, in the future we will need more leaders who can adapt quickly, think on their feet and apply fresh thinking to these complex challenges. Our family-friendly benefits and open, collaborative way of working are just two approaches we use to attract the very best people at every level."

Applications should be made through the GCHQ careers website. The closing date is 30 November.

Notes for Editors 

About GCHQ

Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) is one of the three UK Intelligence and Security Agencies, along with MI5 and the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6). GCHQ works to protect the UK and its citizens from a range of threats to national security, including from terrorism, serious and organised crime and cyber-attack. It also works to protect UK forces wherever they are deployed and, through its Information Security arm CESG, provides policy and assistance on the security of Government communications and electronic data.

About the Future Leaders Programme

Up to 24 places are available on the first intake of the Future Leaders Programme. The start date for successful candidates is expected to be September 2016. The starting salary for the scheme is £30,911.

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