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Apprentice - Business Operations


Location: Hampshire

Job Type: Full time


About the job

Job summary

Are you 18 or over? Do you want to develop your skills?

Whether you're just starting out, upskilling, or looking for a career change – our apprenticeship is for you!

Undertake a Level 3 Business Administration Apprenticeship whilst providing support to the wider Business.

Business administrators have a highly transferable set of knowledge, skills and behaviours that can be applied in all sectors. These skills will be developed through supporting and engaging with different parts of the organisation and interacting with internal and external customers. Working independently or as part of a team, you will get involved in developing, implementing, maintaining and improving administrative and business services, working to provide the platform and capability to enable the delivery of high impact science and technology.

Dstl recognises the importance of diversity and inclusion as people from diverse backgrounds bring fresh ideas. We are committed to building an inclusive working environment in which each employee fulfils their potential and maximises their contribution.

We particularly welcome female and ethnic minority applicants and those from the LGBTQI community, as they are under-represented within Dstl at these levels.

Job description

In this role you will develop the Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours outlined in the apprenticeship including:

  • Record and document production, including producing accurate records and documents such as: emails, letters, files, payments, reports and proposals. Exploring options for improvements and presenting solutions to management.
  • Planning and Organisation: Organising meetings and events, taking minutes during meetings and creating action logs as appropriate. Management of, and documentation of resources and equipment.
  • Project Management - Using relevant project management principles and tools to scope, plan, monitor and report. Undertakes and leads projects as and when required. Engaging and fostering relationships with internal and external customers, clients and suppliers.
  • Process Management - Applying a solutions-based approach to improve business processes and helping define procedures.

Following the completion of the apprenticeship our apprentices have gone on to work in a variety of roles, including Training Coordinators, Project Management, Personal Assistants and more. This apprenticeship creates a fantastic platform to launch your career within Dstl – they sky is your limit.

Important Information

Our work in defence, security and intelligence requires our employees to be UK Nationals who are able to gain a high level of security clearance to undertake the projects we are involved in to protect us from security threats. For this reason, only UK Nationals will be able to apply for this role. If you are an international or dual-national candidate, and you think you have the skills we need, please consider applying to any of our government, security or defence partners.

This role will require full UK security clearance and you should have resided in the UK for the past 5 years. For some roles Developed Vetting will also be required, in this case you should have resided in the UK for the past 10 years.

Person specification

We looking for someone who has:

  • Evidence of good standard of general education e.g. GCSEs or equivalent including English and Mathematics at grade C/grade 4 or above.
  • Familiarity with all core Microsoft Office software products, particularly Word, Excel and PowerPoint and Outlook.
  • Willingness to learn how to use alternative software packages.


  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, ideally with some experience in presenting.
  • The ability to remain adaptable in a fast paced environment, and adjust your style of working to meet the different needs of the Teams.
  • A collaborative and adaptive team player with strong interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to manage your own time effectively and to prioritise work effectively.

You will need to demonstrate an interest in working in a business operations environment, as well as in a customer facing role.

The apprenticeship will be delivered by Wiltshire College, 20% of your weekly hours will be committed to study for the apprenticeship through virtual learning, webinars, live seminars etc.

This apprenticeship will need you to be on site regularly to develop relationships and learn from colleagues.


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

  • Delivering at Pace
  • Working Together
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Communicating and Influencing


Alongside your salary of £21,131, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory contributes £5,705 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.


Dstl’s full range of great benefits can be found in the information pack which includes:

  • Financial: An excellent pension scheme starting from 26% employer contribution (find out more here). In Year Rewarding Achievement bonuses and thank you vouchers. Rental deposit scheme and cycle to work scheme.

  • Flexible working: Options include alternative working patterns such as; compressed hours (e.g. working a 4 day week/ 9 day fortnight), job shares and annualised hours (agreed number of hours per annum paid monthly i.e. working term-time only).

  • Working hours: Flexibility around your working day (e.g. start time, finish time). Ability to bank hours in a 12 month reference period including the ability to accrue and use 3 days per calendar month.

  • Where you work: Depending on your role, blended working may be available including remote working to suit you and your team. This can be discussed at interview.

  • Annual leave: 25 days pro rata (rising to 30 after 5 years) plus 8 public holidays with the ability to buy/sell 5 additional days per annum.

  • Family: Maternity, adoption or shared parental leave of up to 26 weeks with full pay, an additional 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid

  • Learning and Development: Dstl encourages and supports charterships, accreditations and provides employees access to fully funded apprenticeships up to level 7 (Masters Degree). Dstl will pay for 2 memberships with relevant bodies/institutions. Employees also have access to Civil Service Learning.

  • Facilities: Onsite parking, EV Charging points, restaurants, cafés and gyms.

Things you need to know

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.
We want you to have your best chance of success in our recruitment process, so If at any stage of the application process you would like help or assistance please contact the Dstl Recruitment Team and we will do all we can to support you.

Sifting will take place week commencing the 27th November with interviews to be arranged from the 4th December 2023

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check (opens in a new window).

See our vetting charter (opens in a new window).
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK nationals only.

This job is not open to candidates who hold a dual nationality.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles (opens in a new window).
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.