Government Economic Service Sandwich Student Placement Scheme

This scheme is only open to students in their penultimate year of undergraduate study and who are on track for a 2:1 or 1st class degree.


Application Guidance Notes

Job Descriptions



The Government Economic Service (GES) Sandwich Student Placement is now closed. Please register to be notified when the scheme opens again in Autumn 2024.

Are you an economics undergraduate in your penultimate year? Do you want to gain practical experience and use your economics skills to make a difference? Join the UK Government for a paid student placement.

You would spend a year working in a government department before returning to your studies. The job could involve analysing data, providing advice on policy options, and preparing briefings for officials and ministers.

Placement students also get a priority interview for a government role upon graduation and many return to work for us.

About the Government Economic Service (GES)

We are the professional body for economists in the Civil Service. With over 3,500 members, we are the largest recruiter of economists in the country. We recruit student, graduate, and apprentice economists and support their professional development in more than 50 government departments in locations across the UK.

Eligibility Requirements

This scheme is only open to students in their penultimate year of undergraduate study (i.e. year before the final year of study) and who are on track for a 2:1 or 1st class degree.

To be eligible applicants must be studying for a degree in economics or a joint economics degree where economics comprises at least 50% of the total course, studied so far. You must also be on course for a 2:1 or 1st class degree (based on your 1st year results).

Individuals will also need to demonstrate that they meet the relevant immigration requirements and their eligibility under the Civil Service Nationality Rules (CSNRs). Nationality requirements are explained in more detail on the Civil Service nationality rules webpage.

More information on the eligibility criteria can be found at the top of this page in our attached Application Guidance Notes.

How to Apply

The Government Economic Service (GES) Sandwich Student Placement is now closed. Please register to be notified when the scheme opens again in Autumn 2024.

Candidates who are successful at the sift stage will be randomly allocated to any of the participating departments.

Candidates who are unsuccessful at the sift stage will not be given any feedback or comments. If you do not hear from us within 2 months of deadline, please assume your application has been unsuccessful.

Please note that some departments require candidates to have a UK footprint for 5 years to get security clearance, including the Home Office, Ministry of Defence and Office for National Statistics.

Re-join GES after your placement

As part of the scheme, we have included an enhancement to the already successful sandwich placement scheme by making an offer of a permanent contract (subject to security clearance) to those students to take up upon graduation (in the department they undertake a placement) and who:

  • are on track for a minimum 2:1 degree in Economics
  • are assessed to have successfully completed their placement by their line managers
  • have passed a Civil Service Economic Assessment Centre (EAC) towards the end of their placement
  • have the right to work in the UK

This means that the placement scheme is now a gateway to a career as a government economist.

Please note: Some departments may not be able to offer a permanent contract if successful at EAC and you will be informed of this, should this be the case.

Equal Opportunities

The Civil Service is an Equal Opportunities employer. Candidates with disabilities (as defined in the 1995 Disability Discrimination Act) can choose to declare on their application form that they require adjustments at interview, for which we can make a range of provisions. Please contact us should you have any questions regarding this – we would be happy to help.

We are interested in your skills and aptitudes. We have no preferences for particular backgrounds or universities. We want to reflect the diversity of the country we serve.

Complaints procedure

For details on our complaints procedure, please click here

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil service code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles. The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity.

Updates to this page

Published 4 September 2015
Last updated 20 November 2023 + show all updates
  1. The scheme is now closed and information on how to register your interest for when the scheme next opens has been added.

  2. New Job Description pack with details of Cabinet Office and Scottish Government roles

  3. The Government Economic Service Sandwich Student Placement Scheme is now live and you can apply until 7 November.

  4. Scheme closed at 11.55am on Monday 24 October - link to application form on Civil Service Jobs Website removed.

  5. Application deadline has been extended to 11.55 am on Monday 24 October 2022

  6. 2023 Application guidance notes and job descriptions added

  7. Link to apply added

  8. 2023 to 2024 scheme application due to be open date of 4th October added.

  9. 2022-23 scheme now closed for applications.

  10. Scheme timetable in Guidance Notes amended to show extended application deadline of 16.55pm on 18 October 2021

  11. Scheme deadline for applications has been extended to 16.55pm on Monday 18 October 2021

  12. 2022-23 Vacancy open from 4 to 15 Oct 2021 at 16.55 - Civil Service Jobs reference number provided

  13. 2022 to 2023 scheme will open for applications the week commencing 4 October 2021.

  14. Interview section was updated

  15. The GES Sandwich Student Placement 2021-22 scheme is now closed.

  16. Update for the next round of the placement scheme with guidance and job descriptions

  17. Removed job descriptions document and added a civil service code link at the bottom.

  18. Updated details and documents

  19. Social Media links added

  20. The GES Sandwich Scheme is now closed and the application form has been removed.

  21. Details of new scheme now available

  22. application form in word format added

  23. open date added

  24. 2018/19 application added in PDF format

  25. The Government Economic Service 2017-18 sandwich student placement scheme is now closed.

  26. OBR job description has been added

  27. Updated with details on how to apply for a 2017/18 Government Economic Service sandwich student placement.

  28. New example interview questions and numeracy examples published

  29. First published.

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