Cabinet Office taps £20k recruiter to help fill CDIO role

Department retains headhunters in bid to hire tech chief

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The Cabinet Office has called in headhunters in its search for a chief digital and information officer, whose role will include setting plans for transformation across the department.

The department has agreed to pay Global Resourcing Ltd £20,000 to help fill the position, which comes with a salary of £145,000 for external candidates. The job is being offered on a permanent basis or two-year fixed term with the option of extension, with the successful candidate reporting to the Cabinet Office’s chief operating officer Sarah Harrison.

According to recently published contract documents signed last month, the Cabinet Office is set to pay the tech-focused recruitment firm 25% of the £20,000 fee for posting a job advert, and a further 25% for submitting a satisfactory shortlist.

It will receive the final £10,000 balance on successfully placing an applicant in the role – but will have to pay that sum back if the CDIO leaves within six months.

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The Cabinet Office is seeking “a confident, user focused, highly experienced technology leader who has a passion for finding better and innovative ways of doing things,” Harrison wrote in the job’s candidate information pack. “Someone who can drive digital, data and technology strategies and deliver results; who can build strong partnerships across complex organisations; who can transform and simplify our legacy systems.”

The job will involve managing functions including cybersecurity, data and analytics and technology support for hybrid working. The CDIO can be based in either London or Glasgow.

The Cabinet Office advertised a CDIO post in April 2019. Then in September that year, it launched recruitment for a government-wide CDIO, a £180,000-a-year permanent secretary-level role based in the department. 

In January 2021, Joanna Davinson was appointed as executive director of the Central Digital and Data Office, which sits within the Cabinet Office. This post was, effectively, created instead of the government-wide position.

Davinson and Daljit Rehal, CDIO for HM Revenue and Customs, are on the recruitment panel for the new role in the central department.

Applications are open until 10 January.


Sam Trendall

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