Register  |  Log In  |  Contact Us

Deputy Director for International Trade

Contract Type
Flexible Hours, Part-Time, Permanent
Public Sector
London, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh or Cardiff
Expiry Date
Trade agreements cover a wide range of policy issues that BEIS Ministers have domestic responsibility for. You will lead work an a key priority in government to secure ambitious trade deals covering 80% of UK trade.

Job Description

About the Economic Partnerships Directorate

The Economic Partnerships Directorate is one of the core Directorates in BEIS responsible for leading BEIS’s interests in trade negotiations with the EU and rest of world, working closely alongside the Trade and Europe Portfolio Directorate as well as policy colleagues in the Trade Europe and Analysis Group and across BEIS.

EPD covers a wide and diverse portfolio including:

• Managing our relationship with the Devolved Administrations, Crown Dependencies and British Overseas territories across the whole of BEIS’s portfolio;

• Developing the strategy, evidence and analysis to inform our approach to trade negotiations with the EU and ROW;

• Dealing with the implications of leaving the EU for the UK Internal Market including managing the progress of the UK Internal Market Bill through Parliament;

• Driving forward our EU engagement strategy post-Exit and supporting its implementation;

• Developing frameworks and policies for operating post-EU Exit, including focusing on a new international trade policy.

We collaborate effectively with colleagues across BEIS, working with them on a range of policy areas including preparation for Transition at the end of 2020, economic recovery and industrial strategy. We invest in and develop partnerships beyond BEIS: with third countries through trade and international policy, with the Devolved Administrations, within Whitehall and with UKREP in Brussels. Everything we do requires working collaboratively with stakeholders and we take pride in our ability to work with and through others – and to influence them to achieve better outcomes.

We are committed to building an inclusive and supportive environment for all our members. We want to attract, develop and retain people who are motivated and supported in their work, and challenged with stretching development opportunities, consistent with the BEIS values (Brilliant, Enterprising, Inclusive and Skilled). In this period of unprecedented change we have a particular focus on maintaining well-being and resilience.

Job description

A key priority for the government is securing ambitious trade deals covering 80% of UK trade within the next three years, including focusing on delivering new trade deals with the US, Australia, New Zealand and replacing existing EU trade deals with other countries including Japan, Canada, Mexico, Turkey and the EFTA/EEA countries. The government wants to champion global free trade, strengthen the global trading system and resolve trade tensions and disputes.

Trade agreements cover a wide range of policy issues that BEIS Ministers have domestic responsibility for – including goods and services regulation, SMEs, competition, subsidy policy, intellectual property, labour and climate - and impact on BEIS priorities including economic recovery, the industrial strategy, levelling up across the UK and net-zero by 2050.

You will be responsible for leading work to build an effective partnership with Department for International Trade, anticipate global challenges and identify opportunities to influence trade negotiations; align DIT negotiating mandates and priorities with BEIS priorities to support conclusions of successful RoW negotiations; and advise senior officials and Ministers on trade issues.

You will lead a team of 20-25, building policy capability in BEIS; communicating effectively with internal and external stakeholders; and challenging policy teams to ensure that trade agenda adds maximum value.

Working with colleagues, you will aim to build a friendly, inclusive, resilient and capable Directorate, including personal leadership of at least one key corporate objective.


Person Specification:

You will be a strong, credible leader and able to provide evidence of:

• A strong international background and track record of successful delivery;

• Inspiring leadership, able to support and motivate staff to deliver through a period of uncertainty and volatility;

• Strategic thinker able to lead and manage a wide-ranging and complex agenda, making connections and maintaining a grip on the “bigger picture”;

• Able to review quickly and effectively evidence and relevant information and advise on detailed policy issues;

• Excellent communication and influencing skills, able to get to the heart of complex issues and explain them effectively to senior stakeholders;

• Able to build effective partnerships with a broad range of stakeholders inside and outside government;

• Experience of operating in a complex, cross-Whitehall policy environment and demonstrable ability to build trust and gain confidence of ministers and other senior officials.


BEIS offers a competitive mix of benefits including:

A culture of flexible working, such as job sharing, homeworking and compressed hours.
Automatic enrolment into the Civil Service Pension Scheme.
A minimum of 25 days of paid annual leave, increasing by 1 day per year up to a maximum of 30.
An extensive range of learning & professional development opportunities, which all staff are actively encouraged to pursue.
Access to a range of retail, travel and lifestyle employee discounts.