What was your career path?
I applied to the Administrative Officer competition last October. This had three stages; an online psychometric test; an in person psychometric test; and a presentation and interview. I had studied corporate law in NUI Galway for three years.
What’s the best part of your job?
I joined the civil service because it offers great opportunities for progression and the chance to help solve our country’s challenges, if only in a small way. I’ve been introduced to the Taoiseach, so I suppose I’ve hit the ground running here.
What are your responsibilities?
My main responsibilities are ensuring the Taoiseach is well prepared for the business of office. I’m required to prepare answers for parliamentary questions, write speeches and prepare briefings. It’s great to be able to tell friends that I’m writing speeches for the Taoiseach and that it’s my words that are informing the Taoiseach of the issues of the day.
Are there opportunities to progress?
There are huge opportunities to move around the department. After two years as an Administrative Officer you’re expected to go on secondment to another department, which offers you the chance to build experience. There’s a huge opportunity for travel too with opportunities in the European Union. One of my colleagues has recently gone on a government trip to China on a civil service exchange.
Is it a good working environment?
You can’t work form home but there is a flexi-time system, which is extremely convenient. The other people in the office are very nice and helped me settle in very well. Among my colleagues there’s a wide range of ages and a great atmosphere in the team.
What advice would you give students?
If you’re being interviewed for my position be very aware of current events as these will almost certainly be brought up and you will be asked for your opinion of them.
Find out more about working in the Public Service by visiting their careers website here