Home Office seeks leader for Policy and Innovation Lab

Department recruits for individual to apply design principles to solve government challenges
Kirsty O'Connor/PA Archive/PA Images

By Sam Trendall

05 Aug 2020

The Home Office is seeking a head for its Policy and Innovation Lab.

The unit, known as CoLab, aims to take the skills of digital experts – such as service design and user research – and apply them more broadly across government by working with policymakers and delivery professionals.

The role heading up CoLab, which is based at the Home Office’s Croydon location, comes with a salary of up to £75,190.

“You’ll combine a depth of expertise in user-centred design with the breadth of experience needed to use it effectively and pragmatically to solve a wide range of problems,” the department said. “This is an opportunity to lead meaningful design that genuinely shapes people’s lives, while building an exemplar for fresh, collaborative ways of working in a large, complex organisation.”

In addition to overseeing the work of the team and setting its overall strategy, the new head will be expected to “increase the visibility and build the reputation of CoLab across the Home Office, wider government and beyond”.

The leader will be tasked with finding the right policy and delivery projects on which to work, and building relationships with external parties – with the goal of “creating advocates for CoLab and its approach”.

“CoLab was set up to draw together elements of service design, design research and lean UX, and apply them to diverse policy and operational challenges from across the Home Office in order to achieve better outcomes,” the Home Office said. “It’s a small team of designers, researchers and technologists, that collaborates closely with Home Office subject matter experts and practitioners from a wide variety of other disciplines.”

In addition to a range of technical design and development skills, candidates must possess experience of leading multidisciplinary teams. 

Also required is experience of “considering and working with the different materials of products and services, including policy, processes, people, technology or infrastructure, front or backstage, across any channel or touchpoint”.

Applicants will also be expected to show evidence of “designing evidence-based solutions… while working creatively within constraints”.

To apply for the role, candidates must submit a CV and a personal statement of up to 750 words before the deadline of 11.55pm on 30 August.

Sam Trendall is the editor of CSW's sister title PublicTechnology, where a version of this story first appeared.

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