Strategic Project Manager

Department for International Trade Logo
Closing Date: 08/08/2022
Contract Permanent
Working Hours Flexible, Full Time, Part Time
Location Darlington
Salary £47,981 - £56,396
Company Department for International Trade

Job Description


Strategic Projects (SPT) is a motivated and energetic team providing a high-quality service to other parts of the Department for International Trade (DIT). We provide flexible, project management and strategy expertise to deliver priority projects that are strategically important to DIT, helping the Department to function better and deliver its priorities effectively.

This role presents a great opportunity for a delivery-focused, collaborative and strategically minded individual to drive forward a range of impactful projects, many of which will be high profile. SPT projects contribute to the delivery of DIT’s vision of securing UK and global prosperity by promoting and financing international trade and investment and championing free trade.

SPT is an excellent place to gain a breadth of experience, build a broad understanding of the Department, develop wide-ranging relationships with senior stakeholders, and contribute towards DIT priorities.

About the Strategic Projects Team:

• SPT works across the Department to deliver a broad spectrum of projects for senior leaders (Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, Directors General and Directors) responding to departmental priorities.

• We are agile and able to adapt our project management and strategy expertise, resource and methodology to the needs of each project.

• We offer a strategic, holistic service, spanning team functions and reporting lines. We take a collaborative approach and are highly skilled at stakeholder management and engagement.

• Projects can be short-term, or longer in duration; we look to address cross-cutting problems at pace, which can be internally focused (looking at governance and process efficiencies), or externally facing (requiring across-Whitehall collaboration).

• Recent projects have included: developing localised strategic and delivery plans for the new Trade & Investment Hubs in Wales and Northern Ireland; developing DIT’s approach to corporate sustainability; providing strategic advice on Export Controls; establishing governance arrangements for DIT’s Outcome Delivery Plan.

The Role

You will be responsible for:

• Scoping, designing and delivering projects from start to finish, with a focus on effective stakeholder engagement and ensuring an evidence-based approach.

• Effectively managing relationships with senior stakeholders, pro-actively bringing people together to solve complex problems, and ensuring that each stage of the project is completed to the satisfaction of the sponsor.

• Line management and leadership within the team, as well as supporting the Head of Strategic Projects to manage the team.

You will be joining a friendly, inclusive and supportive team with a strong track record of delivering for the Department. We are looking for someone who will be actively involved in developing themselves and others and contribute towards the team, Department and the wider Civil Service.

Job description

• Leadership and delivery of priority projects through the whole project lifecycle. Using project management methodologies to effectively design, plan, deliver and complete projects.

• Responsible for ensuring project objectives and benefits are realised, risks mitigated or managed, and that lessons from the project are learnt and incorporated into future work strands.

• Leadership of project teams, allocating and overseeing workstreams, empowering and supporting team members to deliver.

• Stakeholder management and engagement, working effectively with senior officials to facilitate successful project delivery. Delivering structured engagement with multiple stakeholders, and driving progress in the face of competing views and priorities.

• Cultivate your own networks with colleagues across DIT, Civil Service and private sector to support project delivery, promote the team and develop a pipeline of potential future projects by building demand for SPT services.

• Leadership role in SPT to support positive team culture, wellbeing and realise team objectives.

• Line management responsibility.

• Act as an ambassador for SPT and champion project delivery excellence.

Hybrid Working

The role will be based in either London or Darlington. You will be asked to express a location preference during the application process.

Please be aware that this role can only be worked from within the UK and not overseas.

Informal hybrid working arrangements will be available as agreed with the vacancy manager and in line with the requirements of the role.

Most DIT employees will be working a hybrid pattern, spending 2-3 days a week (pro rata) in an office, on average. If your office location is London, you will be eligible to receive London weighting.

Appointments will be made to candidates in merit order based on location preferences.

Support in applying for our vacancies is available by joining a virtual Candidate Support Session. These sessions include helpful tips and advice on the recruitment process, from application to interview.


Essential Criteria

• Strategic thinker with a record of leading successful projects.

• Strong communication and influencing skills. Excellent stakeholder management skills.

• Ability to work at pace, flexibly and under pressure.

• Able to deliver in a fast-paced environment and be comfortable working with uncertainty.

• Problem solver, who can support a team to quickly deliver practical and workable solutions.

Desirable Criteria

• Experience of working effectively with Ministers and / or senior leaders.

Recognised accreditation in professional project management such as:

• APM Project Fundamentals Qualification
• APM Practitioner Qualification
• PRINCE2 Practitioner

Person Specification

We are seeking highly motivated and pro-active strategic thinkers and Project Managers to lead interesting and complex projects in government. You will be:

• An effective people manager with strong leadership skills able to motivate a team to deliver.

• Experienced in dealing with a broad range of stakeholders, able to engage credibly with cross-Whitehall colleagues, including at the most senior level.

• Motivated by successful completion of projects, enjoying a varied range of projects and experiences.

• A self-starter who can autonomously deliver, demonstrating personal drive, resilience and commitment.

• Comfortable networking across the Department, challenging and influencing decision making when required.

• A strategic thinker, comprehending the wider economic and political context.


We’ll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Leadership
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Making Effective Decisions
Apply Now!

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