Political Officer (BEL20.298)

FCO - Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Political Officer (BEL20.298)

FCO - Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Brussels, Belgium

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer. We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.

Job Category: Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Policy & Political roles)
Job Subcategory: Political

Job Description (Roles and Responsibilities):

Due to COVID-19, you may experience some delay in the progress of this recruitment campaign. We are working hard to minimise any disruption.

The United Kingdom’s Joint Delegation to NATO is the vital link between the UK Government and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. Its principal roles are to promote British interests in NATO and to keep UK Ministers and Government Departments informed about NATO discussions and is now looking for a Political Officer for the UK Delegation to NATO in Brussels (UKDEL).

To help represent the UK in the world’s most successful political-military alliance by delivering UK objectives as part of the UK Delegation’s political team, with a particular focus on the Middle East and North Africa region.

NATO is the bedrock of the UK’s defence and security. It is undergoing its most significant changes since the Cold War to meet new and more assertive threats in an increasingly complex and uncertain world; and has recently moved into a new headquarters. The UK plays a highly respected leadership role in the Alliance. The growing threat to the international order, and NATO’s increasing political weight and breadth of engagement, is also strengthening the Alliance’s importance to the UK’s foreign policy.

The pace and range of work are increasing. The delegation is a busy team, a mixed community of UK diplomats, Ministry of Defence civilians, military officers and locally-hired employees, operating at a high tempo in a challenging multilateral environment. But it is also a supportive and happy workplace, with a strong focus on learning and development and upholding values of respect, integrity, fairness and inclusivity.

The United Kingdom's Joint Delegation to NATO is the link between the UK Government and the NATO. The Delegation’s principal roles are to promote British interests in NATO and to keep UK Ministers and government departments informed about NATO discussions. Its work is valued highly by FCO and MOD Ministers alike.

Working within the Political Section, the jobholder will deliver UK objectives in a range of areas. Key focuses will likely include the Middle East and North Africa region; NATO’s partnerships, particularly in the MENA region; and support to wider political team objectives including the Asia Pacific region; Russia; the Western Balkans and advancing the Women, Peace and Security agenda at NATO.

This will require the ability to build relations with a wide range of stakeholders, to persuade and influence when problems arise, and confidently to represent the UK in committee discussions and negotiations. The jobholder will work in collaboration with 29 other Allies, partner delegations and NATO’s International Staff, and represent the UK in Committee, in order to advance UK objectives. They will need to lead UK thinking at NATO in their policy areas, building and drawing on a network of UK government contacts and leveraging seniors when needed. They will need to monitor global developments that affect their areas; and be ready to respond to them. The job holder will need to deliver quality work on high profile issues in a fast-paced environment.

As with all jobs in the Delegation, we promote an adaptable and responsive approach, which means the jobholder will need to be ready to adapt their focus to deal with changing circumstances and priorities. The jobholder will be a strong team player. Working in a large and diverse mission, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in cross-team issues, and the job holder will be expected to make an active contribution to supporting the effectiveness and wellbeing of the UK delegation and its people, based on their particular interests and experience. We can ensure that it will be fast moving and enjoyable, with plenty of scope for policy development and delivery.

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has a strong culture of learning and development, in which the delegation plays a full part. Everyone has at least five days each year for development, and there is great scope to take up specific learning in different forms: there are team away days, opportunities for on-the-job learning, training courses, and longer-term development. French classes are organised regularly, and a range of other masterclasses and presentations are offered, e.g. on prioritisation, stress management and policy issues. Staff have access to the FCO’s Diplomatic Academy which provides in-depth learning and knowledge on a wealth of different subjects and skills up to diploma level.

Main duties and Responsibilities:

  • Policy development: Analysing issues, understanding other countries’ positions and formulating policy;
  • Briefing: Provide succinct, targeted advice and briefing to the UK Permanent Representative, Military Representative and other colleagues as required. Contribute to the Team’s political analysis;
  • Negotiation: Preparing for and representing the UK in working-level Committee and informal discussions, negotiating with Allies and partners to help achieve UK objectives;
  • Political reporting: Draft timely, accurate reports of committee meetings, sessions of the North Atlantic Council, Ministerial meetings and other events as necessary;
  • Networking: Establish and maintain contact with stakeholders in NATO, Allies’ and partners’ delegations, UK Government departments and the UK’s network of embassies;
  • Wider support: Providing support and advice across Political Team and the UK Delegation, particularly in advance of Ministerial meetings, flexing according to changing priorities;
  • Corporate Activity to improve the Delegation’s effectiveness.

Essential qualifications, skills and experience:

  • Experience of working with a wide network of contacts demonstrating negotiation; networking and influencing skills;
  • Good communication skills (written and oral);
  • Ability to grasp complex issues quickly and communicate them simply and effectively;
  • Excellent briefing and drafting skills;
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a team and contribute to its outputs;
  • Strategic Thinking;
  • Adaptability and resilience under pressure;
  • Fluent written and spoken English.

Desirable qualifications, skills and experience:

  • Knowledge of NATO and UK Government institutions and procedures;
  • Knowledge of the Middle East and North Africa, and of wider global strategic and security issues;
  • Knowledge of Women, Peace and Security issues;
  • Knowledge of NATO and UK Government institutions and procedures;
  • Programme management experience.

Required competencies:

  • Seeing the Big Picture, Changing and Improving, Leading and Communicating, Collaborating and Partnering, Managing a Quality Service, Delivering at Pace.

Application deadline: 16 August 2020
Grade: C4 (L)
Type of Position: Fixed Term, Full-time
Working hours per week: 36.25
Duration of Post: 12 months
Region: Europe, Eastern Europe & Central Asia
Type of Post: British Embassy
Number of vacancies: 1
Starting monthly salary (EUR): 5,471.76
Start Date: 1 October 2020

Other benefits and conditions of employment:

This is a fixed-term full-time contract for 12 months, for 5 working days (36.25 hours net) per week. This point will be addressed during the recruitment process.

The monthly gross salary for this position is € 5,471.76, C4(L) level. In addition, we offer an extensive salary package, which includes a 13 month, luncheon vouchers, pension scheme, optional hospitalisation insurance (subject to monthly employee contribution), reimbursement of public transport and a lot more. We offer more days of annual leave than the Belgian requirements.

Please note that Belgian nationals will be paid their salary gross and are expected to comply with their tax obligations through completion of a tax return to the Belgian authorities. Non-Belgian nationals will receive their salary net, minus the deduction of an equivalent level of Belgian tax retained at source. Further information on this will be given to candidates during the recruitment process.

Staff recruited locally by the British Diplomatic Missions in Belgium are subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local Belgian employment law.

The successful candidates will be subject to professional background checks and security clearance.

Visa/passport requirements: Candidates must currently hold the independent right to live and work in Belgium and be prepared to ensure that right remains throughout the scope of the contract. Additional requirements may become necessary after 31st December 2020.

Additional information:

Additional Information (due to Covid 19):

  • You may experiment some delay in the progress of this recruitment campaign and we are working hard to minimise any disruption;
  • Interviews will be done remotely if the existing situation determines this to be the right course of action;
  • Starting date may be delayed depending on circumstances at the time and it will be agreed with the selected candidate.

Please note that the deadline for applications is 23:55 on the day mentioned in the above field “Application deadline”.

We advise you to allow enough time to complete and submit your full application, since only applications completed and submitted before the deadline will be considered.

Please be aware that the deadline for submitting applications is considered to be the time zone for the country where the vacancy has arisen.

Please be advised that the British Diplomatic Missions will not be able to meet the travel costs incurred when travelling to the interview, nor the costs connected with relocation if offered a job.

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© EuroJobsites 2020

EuroJobsites is a registered company number: 4694396 VAT number: GB 880 9055 04

Registered address: EuroJobsites Ltd, Unit 8, Kingsmill Business Park, Kingston Upon Thames, London, KT1 3GZ, United Kingdom

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