Central government recruitment case study


Department for Work and Pensions


Client Brief

Michael Page was selected as a preferred supplier for HR recruitment via two separate tenders, one via Cabinet Office for SCS recruitment and one via Catalyst framework, tasked to source the following professionals: 
  • Senior Civil Service Human Resources
  • HR Directors x5
  • Deputy Director Employee Policy
  • Deputy Director Organisational Development
  • PB2 HR Director

Management level (Grade 6 & 7)

A six month contract covering all permanent recruitment UK wide. So far this equals 6 x ‘Head of’ (Grade 6) and 4 x HR Business Partners (Grade 7)
Contract has a review and possible extension for a further six months at mid 2009, dependent on performance and client requirements. 
Both contracts are UK wide and roles are currently being placed in London, Sheffield, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle.


Our search and selection capabilities pivot on:
  • genuine national coverage
  • our brand position as UK’s leading HR recruiter
  • the reach of our existing network, 70,000+ HR candidates
  • Executive Search capability for senior and specialist roles
  • An account team with 10+ years industry specific and HR experience
The campaign has been carefully structured to meet critical commercial/organisational objectives, whilst meeting civil service requirements for:
  • fair and open competition
  • competency screening against professional skills for Government requirements
  • a diverse range of candidates
  • monitoring of the process and the achievement of the above objectives

Candidate attraction

To date, we have: built a permanent online presence on behalf of the DWP; managed a broad advertising campaign across a range of specialist media and national media; and run broad searches to identify new candidates.


We have overcome some resistance around employer brand issues that the Civil Service/DWP has with the corporate HR community. This, in turn, has been critical to meeting the objectives of the Director General HR, Chris Last, who has recently joined DWP from Ford Europe.

Success rate

Of the 18 roles, we have successfully filled 16; all offers were accepted first time and all candidates from the first shortlists were presented. We have 2 roles still in process.