About us

The Civil Service serves the government of the day and supports them to develop and implement its policies as effectively as possible.

Civil servants are part of your local community and all around the UK, providing essential services that help, improve and save lives. And as society changes, we are changing and modernising with it to make sure we keep delivering brilliant, efficient and effective public services for millions of people every day.

In all that we do, we uphold the Civil Service code and our values of integrity, honesty, objectivity, and impartiality.

The Civil Service provides services directly to people all over the country, including:

  • paying benefits and pensions
  • running employment services
  • running prisons
  • issuing driving licences

We also have staff working on policy development and implementation, including analysts, project managers, lawyers and economists.

Who we are

We’re politically impartial and independent of government and work in central government departments, agencies, and non-departmental government bodies (NDPBs). The Civil Service does not include government ministers (who are politically appointed), members of the British Armed Forces, the police, officers of local government or NDPBs of the Houses of Parliament, employees of the National Health Service (NHS), or staff of the Royal Household.

We’re co-ordinated and managed by the Prime Minister, in his role as Minister for the Civil Service. The most senior civil servant in a department is a permanent secretary.

As we’re accountable to the public we need to meet the highest possible standards in all that we do. We aim to have:

  • integrity - putting the obligations of public service above personal interests
  • honesty - being truthful and open
  • objectivity - basing advice and decisions on rigorous analysis of the evidence
  • impartiality - acting solely according to the merits of the case and serving governments of different political parties equally well

In order to make best practice the standard we are currently undergoing a period of change. This will make our service more skilled, less bureaucratic and more unified.

Equality and diversity

We publish our equality and diversity statistics as part of Civil Service headline workforce information. Click here for more information about our equality and diversity policy and how we monitor equality and diversity.

Functional model

Government functions form a framework for collaboration across government, to support delivery of outcomes.

For more information, see government functions.

Civil Service People Survey

The Civil Service People Survey Hub brings together all Civil Service People Survey reports, data, case studies and blog posts. The People Survey runs annually in over 100 organisations.

Corporate information

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Jobs and contracts