Ministerial role

Minister of State for Employment


The minister’s responsibilities include:

  • Universal Credit, including labour market aspects and overall programme management
  • employment strategy and labour market interventions, including:
    • conditionality and sanctions
    • youth employment
    • women’s employment
    • black, Asian and minority ethnic employment
    • Fuller Working Lives
    • New Enterprise Allowance
  • Jobcentre Plus, partnership working and employer engagement
  • EU and international affairs, including support to the Secretary of State on Brexit
  • support to the Secretary of State on devolution

Current role holder: Alok Sharma MP

Alok Sharma was appointed Minister of State for Employment at the Department of Work and Pensions on 9 January 2018.

He was Minister of State for Housing and Planning, for the Department for Communities and Local Government from 13 June 2017 to 9 January 2018.

Parliamentary career

Alok was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office from 17 July 2016 to 13 June 2017.

He has served as a member of the Commons Treasury select committee, a member of the Commons Science and Technology select committee, a Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Treasury and from 2012 to 2015 as a Conservative Party Vice Chairman. Alok was appointed in 2016 as the Prime Minister’s Infrastructure Envoy to India.

He also served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Rt Hon Oliver Letwin MP, the former Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster who had overall responsibility for the Cabinet Office. He was elected as the Conservative MP for Reading West in May 2010.

Career outside politics

Prior to entering Parliament, Alok qualified as a chartered accountant with Coopers & Lybrand Deloitte, and then worked for 16 years within banking, first with the Japanese firm Nikko Securities and then Enskilda Securities (the investment banking arm of SE Banken), where he held senior roles based out of London, Stockholm and Frankfurt, including serving as a member of the bank’s Corporate Finance Global Management Committee.


Alok is married and lives in Reading Borough with his wife, two daughters and his dog Olly.

Previous holders of this role

  1. The Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP

    • 2016 to 2018
  2. The Rt Hon Priti Patel MP

    • 2015 to 2016
  3. The Rt Hon Esther McVey

    • 2013 to 2015
  4. Mark Hoban

    • 2012 to 2013
  5. The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP

    • 2010 to 2012


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  1. Employment Minister welcomes new UK employment record

    • Press release
  2. Our 18 employment records this year show why we need the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal

    • Speech
  3. Eighth month of UK wage growth with disabled employment at record high

    • Press release
  4. Helping people from ethnic minority backgrounds into work

    • Speech
  5. Youth unemployment down 50% since 2010

    • Press release
  6. Update on the future of DWP jobcentres

    • News story
  7. Employment Minister addresses employers as part of National Inclusion Week

    • Speech
  8. Unemployment rate falls to 4%, with record low youth unemployment

    • Press release
  9. Employment rate at new record high

    • Press release
  10. Employment rate remains at record high

    • Press release