When you apply for any Civil Service job, you will need to complete an online application form that requires you to submit a personal statement. The personal statement will be assessed against the relevant Civil Service success profiles and strengths that are applicable or the role
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So, how do you write a personal statement for a civil service job? Let’s start by looking at what you should include.
What Should a Civil Service Personal Statement Include?
Your personal statement should be used to compliment your CV and further outline why you are suitable for the role.
The key to a great civil service personal statement is to provide evidence against the Civil Service Success Profiles to show you match them and that you are perfect for the role. The Civil Service Success Profiles, otherwise known as the “essential criteria” will be outlined on the job advert or job description. Using these, you should demonstrate your previous experience and your skills that can be transferred to your new role within the Civil Service.
Remember, you must back up these skills and experience, and a great way to do this, is to demonstrate how you acquired the experience and skills in your previous roles.
Your personal statement should form around ‘how’ and ‘what’ you have previously done, all whilst matching the Success Profiles.
You will usually get just 250 words for your answers.
BONUS TIP – How do I write a CV for a government job?
A great personal statement still needs a good CV. Here is what you should include on your CV/Resume. Firstly, include an outline of your previous job experience, detailing the length of time you held each previous job role for, and a short breakdown of the responsibilities, tasks, and the work you did for each role. You should also include any awards, achievements or significant projects you previously obtained or worked on. This is your chance to shine, so don’t be afraid to sell yourself and big yourself up in the best light possible. If you have ever had any training or if you have been awarded any qualifications that are relevant to the Civil Service, or that showcase your commitment, ability to learn, or diversify, then you should highlight these too.
How to Structure a Civil Service Personal Statement?
The most important thing to do is structure your responses clearly and ensure that your statement focusses on the Success Profiles/Essential Criteria.
You are allowed to use heading or bullet points if this works best for you, but remember all of this will eat into your word count. Further below in this blog we have provided a breakdown of the 9 Civil Service Success Profiles and what you need to consider when preparing your statement for each Success Profile.
What Should you Avoid in a Personal Statement?
With 100s of people applying to Civil Service roles, it is important that your personal statement is NOT thrown aside because you’ve made one of the following common mistakes:
- Poor spelling and grammar – always check your spelling and grammar before submitting!
- Not tailoring your answers for the role – ensure you use the job description and align your skills and experience with the role you’re applying for.
- Using the same answers multiple times for multiple applications in the Civil Service (each application for a new role needs new answers).
- Not aligning your statement to the Civil Service Success Profiles – this is key!
- Using redundant or unnecessarily complicated language and cliches – keep it simple and easy to read – the assessor shouldn’t have to decipher your statement!
Writing the Perfect Civil Service Personal Statement – What are the Civil Service Success Profiles?
SEEING THE BIG PICTURE
The Civil Service success profile of seeing the big picture requires you to have knowledge of how your job fits in with the public sector mission and objectives. It is important that you demonstrate within your 250-word personal statement that you have the ability to carry out your work in the best interests of the nation.
CHANGING AND IMPROVING
Whilst working in the Civil Service you must be open to continually changing and improving. If you do not improve your performance at work, or embrace change positively, the Civil Service will not be able to meet its objectives. Again, when creating your Civil Service personal statement and online application form, you will need to demonstrate within 250 words your ability to meet the changing and improving success profile!
MAKING EFFECTIVE DECISIONS
All members of the Civil Service, regardless of their role, are required to make effective decisions that demonstrate value money and efficiency. When making effective decisions, you must use an evidence-based approach and carefully consider your options, including an assessment of the risk involved and implications posed. Make sure you provide evidence of this Civil Service success profile within 250 words.
COMMUNICATING AND INFLUENCING
Another of the Civil Service success profiles and strengths is that of communicating and influencing. Within your chosen civil service job, you must communicate with clarity and purpose and always respect the needs, views and opinions of others. To meet the assessment for this success profile you will need to create a personal statement of just 250 words!
Teamwork is absolutely vital when working in the Civil Service. Regardless of the position you are applying for, working with others must be demonstrated within your personal statement by way of using the STAR technique – situation, task, action and result. Within your personal statement, demonstrate you can work effectively with other people both within your team and also with external stakeholders or contractors. (250 words maximum!)
Can you demonstrate pride and passion for delivering service within an organisation? Are you able to value other people’s opinions and ensure your team is diverse in nature so that the expectations and needs of customers are met? If so, then you probably have what it takes to mee the Civil Service success profile of leadership! Once again, make sure you write a personal statement that demonstrates your ability to provide leadership within just 250-words.
DELIVERING AT PACE
Can you work at pace and deliver results to a high standard? If the answer is yes, then you might just have what it takes to work within the Civil Service. Again, another one of the success profiles is that of delivering at pace, and we strongly advise you provide a specific example of where you have been able to work quickly and accurately in a previous role when completing your personal statement. Aim to provide evidence of this success profile within your personal statement all within just 250 words!
DEVELOPING SELF AND OTHERS
Taking responsibility for your own development and the development of others is a vital aspect of all civil Service roles. If you are required to write a personal statement that demonstrates your ability of developing self and others, provide a specific example within 250 words of where you have focused on this important success profile.
MANAGING A QUALITY SERVICE
The Civil Service has a strong reputation for managing and delivering a quality service. Regardless of the department you are hoping to join within the Civil Service, there is a strong possibility you will be assessed against this important success profile. Again, provide a solid 250-word personal statement that gives evidence of where you have taken control of the delivery of a fantastic service to meet the needs of a customer or a client.
CIVIL SERVICE PERSONAL STATEMENT EXAMPLES
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