The Parliamentary Office for Science and Technology (POST) is part of the Research and Information (R&I) department, which also includes the House of Commons Library and the Information Rights and Information Security team (IRIS).
There are many roles that make up R&I. Our teams include communications professionals, data and information managers, librarians, researchers, scientists, statisticians and more.
We advertise our opportunities on the House of Commons careers website.
If you want to know more about roles in Research and Information and what it’s like working with us, take a look at our staff profiles.
What we’re looking for
We’re proud of our organisational values, and we’re looking for people who can bring them to life.
We also look for a variety of skills and abilities in the people who work with us. For some roles we focus on your experience of research and analysis, or for people who can work with and understand data.
Sometimes we’ll be looking for skills and ability in people management, or your ability to work under pressure and prioritise and manage deadlines. These are just some examples and we’ll always set out the essential requirements needed in the job description.
Depending on the role, we rarely need a qualification, and we don’t always need direct experience. For some roles, particularly at entry level, we’re looking for potential and aptitude.
We take part in the Speaker’s House of Commons BAME Internship Scheme. Colleagues join our team in Enquiry Executive and Research Librarian roles. These roles support our research teams.
POST fellows typically help with the production of research briefings. They are usually placed at POST but may also be seconded to a select committee, the House of Commons Library, or the House of Lords Library.
Our fellows learn how to write for policy with balance and impartiality. They also develop a unique understanding of Parliament and forge relationships with key stakeholders. Our fellows delve into novel and exciting research topics.
POST fellowships are usually available to postgraduate students and early career researchers. Find out more about POST Fellowships.
House of Commons Library Researcher
At the Commons Library, Library Researcher roles are a development grade. For these posts we look for people with strong research skills, a demonstrable interest in policy and/or statistical areas, and a willingness to learn and develop.
After completing a 9-month probationary period, and subject to reaching satisfactory performance levels, successful candidates can apply to progress to the next grade. This involves passing an assessment process for which you’ll have the necessary training and support throughout.
At POST, research is conducted by fellows and advisers. Advisers are divided by speciality and organised in small teams or sections. A typical section at POST comprises of a varying number of fellows supervised by a junior adviser and section lead. Fellows typically spend three months at POST for training, but this time can be extended for part-time fellowships.
There are no set application windows for Library Researcher roles. So as with all Commons Library vacancies, keep a look out on the House of Commons careers website or follow @commonslibrary on Twitter for updates.
How to apply and what to expect
We welcome applications from everyone.
The House of Commons careers website has a list of vacancies, including job descriptions and information on how to apply.
Our job descriptions give you details on what the role involves and the essential requirements we’re looking for.
For the majority of roles, we ask you to fill out an online application form. This typically includes competency related criteria which is essential to the job and what we’re looking for in a candidate.
In your application, you’ll need to tell us how your skills, knowledge, and experience meet this criteria. We may also ask you to complete a test before an interview.
You can save your application and come back to it any time before the deadline.
The STAR format
Our job descriptions set out the relevant criteria that define the skills or experience you need.
We recommend you use the STAR method in your application to show how you meet the criteria:
- S – situation: Describe the situation you were in.
- T – task: What was the task that you needed to accomplish to deal with the situation?
- A – action: What did you do? How did you do it?
- R – result: What was the outcome of the action that you took?
The examples in your answers will then be assessed against the criteria to determine whether you progress to the next stage. You can find more information about STAR when applying on the House of Commons careers website.
Tests and assessments
For some roles we ask candidates to complete a test or assessment. These will always be relevant to the role we’re recruiting for and the results will help us to understand more about your skills and experience.
For example, we might ask you to complete a written test to assess your ability to analyse information, or test your verbal or numerical reasoning skills, or ask you to deliver a presentation (where that’s appropriate to the role you’re applying for). We’ll always give you notice of what we want you to do, plus advice on what we’re looking for and how to do your best.
Currently, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all interviews are conducted online using MS Teams. If you’re invited to an interview, our Resourcing team will give you all the information you need, plus tips on how to prepare for a virtual interview.
Interviews typically last 45 minutes and we’ll ask you questions focused on the criteria the role requires. Typically, these will be example-based questions that will give you the opportunity to talk us through your skills and experience in more detail. You can use the examples you used in your application, or you can tell us about other relevant experience.
We’re happy to make reasonable adjustments if you need support with filling out your application, taking a test or interviewing. As a Disability Confident Leader, we’re committed to ensuring our selection process is equal and inclusive.
As an inclusive employer, we can also make workplace adjustments so that you have everything you need to do the job. If you have a disability, or any difficulty or disadvantage, you can request a workplace adjustment to prevent, reduce or remove obstacles you might face at work. This includes mental health, and physical or non-physical requirements.
Find out more about the benefits of working for the UK Parliament including our various Workplace Equality Networks (WENs) and more.