Civil Service

Driving diversity and investing in the future through work placements.


“The ambition of Movement to Work is to break the vicious circle of ‘no experience – no job’ that prevents young people who are currently not in education, employment, or training from stepping onto the career ladder. Over the years, I have seen the impact we can have in providing structured and quality placements for our young customers. I have talked to young people facing significant barriers, such as abuse, addiction, poverty, and mental health issues, who have been supported by us in DWP and across the Civil Service by delivering safe and meaningful placements, jobs and careers. It is both humbling and inspiring to hear their stories and how we are helping change people’s lives.”

Debbie Alder, Director General of HR, DWP

Sector Government
UK Workforce 510,080
Placement Model In-house
Funding Source

The Department for Work & Pensions was a founding member of Movement to Work in 2013. Since then, the initiative has been rolled out across government departments and the Civil Service is one of the largest providers of work placement opportunities for young people.

Building Movement to Work placements into the talent pipeline for apprenticeships and entry-level recruitment helps fulfil the Civil Service commitment to be representative of the communities it serves. Government has a critical role to play in reducing youth unemployment not just as a policymaker but also as an employer, and by building work placements into its strategic workforce planning the Civil Service is able to invest in a previously untapped talent pool to meet future change.

Civil Service Case Studies

Lilly took part in a Movement to Work placement within the Civil Service at Birmingham Job Centre and successfully gained employment with the Department for Work and Pensions – Counter Fraud, Compliance and Debt team.

“Before I started with the Movement to Work, I wanted to pursue the kinds of jobs the Civil Service offers but wasn’t sure I had the confidence to put myself out there. I worried that I my skills weren’t enough, but also that a lack of experience in an office — with that sort of environment – would really hold me back. I also found that I felt confused by the procedures, the process, all the ways that applying for a job in the Civil Service differed from more familiar workplaces and roles. It was daunting, if I’m honest.

Working with the Movement to Work team, going through their courses and their training, really helped me to overcome that feeling of anxiety about pursuing the job that I wanted. It helped me recognise the professional skills I already had, and develop the ones that were weaker. It also helped me build relationships with supportive mentors who made me feel recognised and respected and helped me recognise that the working world was a challenge I had the tools to meet head-on.

And while the Movement to Work couldn’t give me confidence — it did help me find my own. It helped me recognise just how much I had to offer in the workplace, and where I could start to fit in.”

Lilly, Birmingham

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