James tells us about their role as an Administrative Officer in the Economics Division in the Department of Finance and how the training courses available allowed them to enhance their knowledge and skills.

Please tell us a little bit about your role.

I work in the Economics Division in the Department of Finance. I have a number of responsibilities, including preparing briefings about ongoing policy issues, responding to Parliamentary Questions and Freedom of Information Requests, and conducting research into several aspects of the Irish economy.

What were your reasons for applying for your role?

I felt that the role requirements and opportunities outlined for the AO Business and Finance Stream were highly suitable for my personal skillset. As a recent graduate with a background in empirical and quantitative work from university, but also with a keen interest in public policy, this position seemed to be an ideal fit.

What do you value most about your job?

I am particularly grateful to have secured a role that involves work which I genuinely enjoy. I am able to dedicate time to interesting long-term projects whilst also playing a part in responding to developing events on a day-to-day basis.

What are some of the benefits and supports available to you?

I have access to an excellent selection of training courses (including professional writing courses, courses on career planning in the public sector and educational courses on law-making), which allow me to enhance my knowledge and skills. I also have considerable flexibility with the option of working-from-home, for which I have been provided with all the necessary equipment.

What opportunities has this role provided for you?

As an AO, I have been able to both learn a huge amount on how the Civil Service operates and contribute to its response to ongoing challenges. I have also had the privilege of meeting international representatives visiting Ireland.

What has surprised you since starting this role?

I was surprised by speed at which I was integrated into the team and given important responsibilities. I was never given menial work to do or kept out of important discussions, which I greatly appreciated.

What aspect of the role do you particularly enjoy?

I really appreciate the diversity of tasks which I am asked to carry out as an AO, on a range of different issues. My role ensures that I am not simply performing the same tasks on the same subject, hence I am able to remain highly-engaged with my work.

Would you recommend a career in the public sector and why?

I would highly recommend the public sector to anyone seeking a fulfilling job with great career opportunities. The work is both interesting and rewarding in nature, and there are always a wide range of supports available. Finally, I have had the fortune of working with extremely helpful and friendly colleagues that immediately make new recruits feel like part of the team.

Anything else you would like to share?

The recruitment process via PAS was very clear and well-structured for candidates. Dates and details for assessments/interviews were communicated in good time, and plenty of feedback was offered after each stage.