MI5 is hiring – you don’t need any past experience to apply and the pay is impressive

For those who've ever aspired to be James Bond, the perfect job has come up.

Wednesday, 6th May 2020, 2:13 pm

Well, not exactly. They can't promise an Aston Martin sports car, vodka martinis on tap and a personalised theme song belted out by Shirley Bassey, but the UK’s intelligence and security agencies – MI5, MI6 and GCHQ – are hiring, and the successful candidates don’t even need any previous experience.

The agencies, who work against everything from terrorism and espionage to cyber threats, are looking for new vetting officers who could be based in three locations.

The role involves identifying risks about people that could endanger national security. Candidates can earn an annual salary of £38,656 in London, or £36,729 in Manchester or Cheltenham.

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The MI6 Building in London. Picture: Getty Images.

“As an accredited Vetting Officer, whether you are meeting new starters or working on internal matters, it’ll be your job to assess an individual’s suitability to hold vetting clearance,” the official job advert explains.

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“You’ll need to put individuals at ease and encourage open conversations to build a full picture of who they are. Organised and confident in making decisions, you’ll manage several cases at once – conducting interviews, assessing information, writing detailed reports and making recommendations.

“It goes without saying that you’ll need excellent communication skills combined with the ability to build rapport, put people at ease and encourage complete honesty. And while you won’t need a degree or previous experience, you will need a degree of life experience. It’s an incredibly rewarding role. Add to this a great work-life balance and the opportunity to develop a fulfilling and varied career across our vetting capability. It doesn’t get much better than that.”

Those appointed will be put on a two-year development programme to become a ‘well-rounded’ officer and there is also a ‘wider career path’ within the agencies.

“This is more than a job, it could be that start of a whole new career,” the advert says.

Applicants must meet residency criteria and ‘discretion is vital’, the agencies emphasise. “You should not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member.”

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