Returning to the tech industry after a career break can be daunting. The pressure to catch up with rapidly evolving technologies while finding the right workplace adds an extra layer of stress. The choice of workplace is crucial. But, it’s not just about catching up; it’s about stepping into an environment that offers what you need.
As a returner, you deserve a workplace that understands the challenges you’ve faced and actively supports your re-entry. At Tech Returners, we collaborate with partners who embody the qualities necessary for your success. One such partner is the Government Digital Service (GDS), which stands out with its commitment to impact, flexibility, and expertise whilst fostering an inclusive workplace for everyone.
Have an Impact
GDS’s technical teams are at the forefront of impactful projects, designing and safeguarding the user experience of digital government. A shining example is GOV.UK, the online hub for government information and services. This platform, integral to Britain’s national infrastructure, touches millions of lives daily, offering essential services from tax payments to registering a death. You can dig deeper into GOV.UK’s strategy here.
GDS’s commitment to making these interactions quicker and more accessible directly impacts citizens, ensuring they receive the support they deserve. Products like GOV.UK One Login simplify access to government services for over 1.5 million people, exemplifying the tangible impact of GDS’s work.
Aisling Sweeney, a Content Designer at GOV.UK, highlights the satisfaction of contributing to meaningful work – “The actual impact of the work that we do is a massive reason to get out of bed in the morning. Having good digital government makes a huge difference to people’s lives. So the more that we can do in GDS to enable people to just get on with their lives and do the things they need to do as easily and quickly as possible, the better. And I love being a part of that journey.“
Re-entering the tech industry often requires a flexible work environment – a need frequently stemming from the most prevalent reason we see for career breaks: raising a family. GDS understands this and fosters a culture of flexibility that accommodates individuals returning to the workforce. With a 60/40 office-to-home working ratio, GDS empowers its teams to decide when and where they work. Whether it’s a traditional 9-5 or a condensed schedule which offers a day off each week or fortnight, GDS prioritises what works for you and your life.
The embrace of hybrid working further underscores GDS’s commitment to results over physical location. As a company, GDS enjoys bringing people together to solve complex problems, and also understands the benefit of focusing in your own space at home.
The cherry on top? GDS provides robust support for parents and carers, recognising the importance of work-life balance. Whether it’s term time working, taking time off to celebrate your family’s milestones and special events, that help is available.
And Foster Inclusivity
GDS is dedicated to promoting an inclusive environment that represents the society it serves. CEO Tom Read emphasises the importance of creating a workplace where individuals can bring their whole selves to work. GDS takes concrete steps towards this goal, measuring and improving diversity, fostering inclusivity through networks, and ensuring equitable representation at all levels.
With networks like REACH, Disability at GDS, Neurodiversity and the Women’s Network, GDS actively challenges its organisation to be more inclusive in all aspects of work. As a Disability Confident employer, GDS is committed to the employment and career development of disabled people: all disabled applicants who apply and meet the essential criteria for the role will be invited to interview.
Bring and Build Expertise
It is important that as a returner, you are given the opportunity to continue to develop and build new expertise. GDS not only values diversity, but also invests in the growth and development of its teams. The organisation provides a minimum of 10 paid working days a year for learning and development. A personal L&D budget allows individuals to invest in courses, conferences, and books. GDS Learning Days, held twice yearly, offer a variety of courses taught by global experts. Specialised training, a profession-led training path, and a Line Manager Development Programme ensure that individuals have the tools and support needed for continuous growth. The emphasis on personal development plans (PDPs) further highlights GDS’s commitment to helping individuals shape their career journeys.
Return to the right role
As you contemplate returning to tech, consider what happens beyond refreshing your skills and building your confidence with Tech Returners. Consider stepping into a workplace that lives and breathes flexibility, impact, and expertise. GDS offers not only the opportunity to contribute to impactful projects but also the flexibility and support needed for your success. We, in partnership with GDS and our programme sponsor, Thoughtworks, encourage you to apply for the Tech Returners programme with the goal of joining a workplace that’s committed to helping you thrive. At GDS, your return to tech is not just welcomed: it’s celebrated.
Apply today and take your first step to becoming part of an organisation that’s shaping the future of digital government with a workforce as diverse as the society it serves.