Principal Data Analyst

  • Job Reference: 149502
  • Date Posted: 24 November 2021
  • Recruiter: HM Revenue and Customs
  • Location: Birmingham
  • Salary: £52,000 to £67,000
  • Sector: Government, Data and Analytics
  • Job Type: Full Time Flex, Part Time Flex, Super Flex
  • Duration: Happy to talk flexible working
  • Work Hours: Full Time

Job Description

At HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) we make sure money is available to fund the UK’s vital public services and assist people with targeted financial support.

We are committed to creating a great place to work for all in an inclusive and respectful environment. Diverse perspectives and experiences are critical to our success in Data Analytics and we welcome applications from people from all backgrounds with the experience and skills needed to perform this role

About Customer Compliance Group and Risk & Intelligence Service

HMRC’s Customer Compliance Group (CCG) plays a pivotal role in improving the collection of the correct amount of money due from UK taxpayers, investigating breaches and offences against the tax system, and acting to identify and mitigate potential threats.

The Risk & Intelligence Service (RIS) is the heart of HMRC’s compliance activity and drives both data and intelligence-driven identification of non-compliance.
Your role will be in one of two teams that use data to deepen our understanding of how to ensure the right tax is paid, working with some of the most complex and comprehensive data-sets in the country.

Compliance Operational Insight & Risking (COIR) lead on the design and delivery of high-risk taxpayer profiles and risk packages to meet the needs of our internal customers across HMRC.

The successful candidate will join our Insight & Exploitation Team (I&E) which forms one of the key business areas in COIR.

The team have been critical to work across the COVID-19 Support Schemes in HMRC and have a consistent track record in facilitating data-led compliance through the provision of insight to advise decision-making at strategic, tactical and operational levels.

The Data Analytics Team (DAT) forms part of the Analysis function within RIS. DAT provides analytical expertise to policy and compliance partners across multiple business areas. We interrogate complex data to first understand it, and then to provide insight on compliance risks and shape new compliance capability.

DAT provides data-driven insight to decision makers at all levels through innovation to provide new ways to identify, understand and intervene to treat compliance risk.

Working alongside Software Engineering team (SET) and Bulk Data Exploitation Capability (BDEC), DAT is a collaborative and friendly team with shared core values as an inclusive workplace.

Job description

At HMRC we are committed to creating a great place to work for all our colleagues; an inclusive and respectful environment that reflects the diversity of the society we serve.

We want to maximise the potential of everyone who chooses to work for us and we offer a range of flexible working patterns and support to make a fulfilling career at HMRC accessible to you.

Diverse perspectives and experiences are critical to our success and we welcome applications from all people from all backgrounds with the experience and skills needed to perform this role.

As a Principal Data Analyst in RIS, you will lead and support projects that will deliver and continuously improve three key areas:

1. Specialist Data Insight & Exploitation – Continuing to develop a rich data insight for partners, challenging current methods and conveying the art of the possible. You will work across HMRC to deliver clear, quantifiable outcomes through data exploitation.

2. Deployment of New Analytical Methods – Crafting and developing new analytical methods to support advancements in risk-targeting, population insight, and the utilisation of new sources of data and intelligence. You will support our ambition to redefining our approach to evaluation through data and build capabilities across the team

3. Analytical Technology – Understand requirements and engage with projects to protect and improve the technology which allows us to deliver an efficient tax risk-assessment service for HMRC.


As a Principal Data Analyst you will play a key role in the way we operate across the entire business area. Within your role you will:

• Explore a wide set of opportunities to innovate; evaluating options, impacts, risks and solutions to provide clear problem definitions and inspiring exploitation of new data, technology and tools.

• Identify areas of work that stand to be improved through the use of analytical, statistical and advanced modelling techniques.

• Ensure sound working practices which lead to robust, replicable and resilient outputs.

• Build capability and work with analysts to identify key areas for development.

• Ensure that we remain in step with fast-developing standards and best practices in the Data Science field.

• Articulate and present the outcome of your work to Senior Leaders, building effective relationships to understand and define user needs for delivery and working to agile principles.

• Develop capability and integrity across the data analyst community and challenge current methods of delivery and providing a different perspective.

Skills and Qualifications Required


• Significant experience and technical ability in the field of Data Analytics and/or Data Science.

• Demonstrable experience in leading the delivery of projects and project teams using recognised project methodologies.

• Proven communication and customer engagement skills, presenting either conclusions/analytical concepts to both technical and non-technical audiences.


• Member of one of the Analytical Professions (such as DDaT, GES, GSR or GORS) or Statistical Community (such as GSS, GSG).

• Experience of accountable development and deployment of statistical models to deliver operational, tactical and strategic outcomes.

• Experience in a statistical programming language – for example, SAS, SQL, R or the Python Data Science libraries.

We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

• Leadership

Technical Skills
We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

• Use of Statistical Modelling, Programming Languages, and Familiarity with Analytical Software and Tools – Data Insight / Data Visualisation.


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Leadership

Technical skills

We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

  • Use of Statistical Modelling, Programming Languages, and Familiarity with Analytical Software and Tools – Data Insight / Data Visualisation.


• Learning and development tailored to your role.

• An environment with flexible working options.

• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity.

• A Civil Service pension with a highly competitive contributory scheme.

• 25 days annual leave in your first year, which will increase by one day for each year’s qualifying service up to a maximum of 30 days.

• Additional one days paid leave commemorating the Queen’s Birthday.

• Generous paid maternity / paternity leave (notably higher than the statutory minimum).

• Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) scheme.

• Interest-free loans allowing you to spread the cost of an annual travel season ticket or a new bicycle.

Team members that are moving offices as a result of the Locations Programme will be entitled to a Moves Adjustment Payment for three years where they incur additional costs. This is calculated based on the difference between the costs of travelling to and from the new and old office, over a weekly period. You will get more detail on this as part of targeted locations move communications.

Find more about HMRC benefits in 'Your little extras booklet'  for further information or visit Thinking of joining the Civil Service

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.

See our vetting charter.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours, Experience and Technical skills.
Application & Selection Process Details

Stage 1: Sift – CV, Statement of Suitability and Leadership Behaviour

Your CV should cover your experience in the area of Data Analytics and/or Data Science, with reference to key achievements and outcomes. Your CV should also provide evidence of the skills and experience listed in the Essential & Desirable Criteria. CVs should not exceed 2 pages.

Your Statement of Suitability (max 500 words) should demonstrate how you meet the requirements of the job role, essential and desirable criteria.

It is important you write about how you meet all the required elements of the essential criteria within the personal statement, not just some of the elements.

Your CV and Statement of Suitability will be sifted against the essential criteria and responsibilities detailed in this job advert.

In addition, you should provide 250 words to show how you meet the following behaviour:

This is a link to guidance on Success Profiles and the criteria we will be assessing:

Selection Process:

In the event of a large number of applications, an initial sift will be performed on experience.

A full sift will then take place on the Leadership behaviour

Candidates who are successful at sift will be invited to attend an interview.

Stage 2: Interview & Presentation

If you are invited to interview, we will contact you via email or CS Jobs Portal to arrange a suitable date/time. Interviews will be performed either by Skype or Microsoft Teams. Sift and interview dates to be confirmed.

Interviews will comprise of Behaviour, Experience and Technical based questions.

Candidates will answer questions on the following behaviour:


Candidates will answer questions on experience referenced in your CV, providing an opportunity to expand on how this is applicable to the Principal Data Analyst role.


Assessment of Technical Skills will require candidates to deliver a 20-minute presentation on:

• A project involving statistical and/or machine learning.


• A single piece of substantial analysis you have undertaken in the last 2 years.

The presentation should be developed to be accessible to a non-expert, while containing enough information to allow fellow professionals to understand and probe the methods used.

It will also be key to demonstrate the business benefit enabled through the delivery of this work. Further details will be provided in advance of the interview.

This will be followed by a short Q&A session.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Interviews are expected to take place in January 2022.

The five Principal Data Analyst posts are shared across DAT and I&E as follows:

The Data Analytics Team (DAT) – 2 posts which can be based in Bootle, Croydon, Manchester, Newcastle and Stratford.

The Insight & Exploitation team (I&E) – 3 posts which can be based in Belfast, Birmingham, Croydon, Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle.

Please select your preferred location on your application form.

Please take extra care to tick the correct boxes in the eligibility sections of your application form. We understand mistakes sometimes happen but if you contact us later than 48hours before the vacancy closes, we will not be able to reopen your application for you. The inbox to contact is: Use subject line to insert appropriate wording eg Please re-open my application - 149502 & vacancy closing date 08th of December 2021.

Security Update

If you are successful and transferring from another Government Department, we will carry out a check of your identity, nationality, and immigration status (including the right to work in the UK) and a criminal record check before confirming your appointment.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service /Disclosure Scotland/Access NI. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstances some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Government Recruitment Service of your intention by emailing stating the job reference number in the subject heading.

For further information on the Disclosure Scotland confidential checking service telephone: the Disclosure Scotland Helpline on 0870 609 6006 and ask to speak to the operations manager in confidence, or email

For further information on the Access NI confidential checking service telephone: the Access NI Helpline on 0300 200 7888 and ask to speak to the operations manager in confidence, or email

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening, subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment.

A candidate is not eligible to apply for a role within the Civil Service if the application is made within a 5 year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.

Please note: in addition to the standard pre-employment checks for appointment into the Civil Service, all candidates must also obtain National Security Vetting at Security Check (SC) clearance level for this vacancy. You will normally need to meet the minimum UK residency period as determined by the level of vetting being undertaken, which for SC is 5 years UK residency prior to your vetting application. If you have any questions about this residency requirement, please speak to the vacancy holder for this post.

HMRC transformation

HM Revenue and Customs is currently going through an exciting ten-year transformation programme to create a tax authority fit for the future. As part of this, we are committed to providing high-quality jobs and giving employees a great place to work, whichever location you work from.

HM Revenue and Customs has made significant progress with its plans to locate in 13 large, modern, flexible offices, equipped with high-speed digital infrastructure supporting improved customer service and compliance activity. These collaborative workspaces will enable smarter working and great training and development facilities, allowing for the sharing of expertise, local training, promotion, and provide great ongoing career development opportunities.

These offices will be located in central locations in the following towns and cities close to accessible transport links: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Newcastle, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Croydon and Stratford.
In addition, there will also be a small number of specialist sites where the work cannot be done anywhere else, in Gartcosh (near Glasgow), Telford, Ipswich, Worthing and Dover, as well as our headquarters in central London. What’s more, our Welsh language service has people located in Porthmadog, as well as Cardiff.

We are letting you know about our future plans because if you are recruited into an office that is not one of these locations, you will be expected, subject to HM Revenue and Customs applicable policies, to move to one of these locations in the future. In some cases, this will be via one of our nine transitional sites.

For more information please contact the vacancy holder.

Terms and Conditions

We really hope you decide to apply for this role. If you’re successful you need to know that in February 2021 members of recognised trade unions (ARC and PCS) voted to approve a pay and contract reform offer. This means that HMRC will adopt new terms and conditions for all colleagues as part of a multi-year pay deal and contract offer, the pay deal period is 01 June 2020 – 31st May 2023 and terms and conditions changes take place from the 01 June 2021 onwards. These terms will apply to colleagues who already work in HMRC and if you join us, it will apply to you too. We’ve put together a summary of the key changes that will be made and you can find this attached to the Job Advert.


If you are currently working for an OGD and would like to consider the impact on your pay when joining HMRC, please see the attached document "Pay on Transfer from OGD" for further information. (Please note the attached document could also be called “Combined T&C and OGD Pay English”)

New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

Further Information

Customer facing roles in HMRC require the ability to converse at ease with members of the public and provide advice in accurate spoken English and/or Welsh where required. Where this is an essential requirement this will be tested as part of the selection process.

A reserve list may be held for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made.

Any move to HMRC from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility here

HMRC welcomes applications from those who need to work a more flexible arrangement and will agree to requests where possible, taking into account our operational and customer service needs. We can’t guarantee that we can meet all requests to work flexibly, as agreement will be subject to business ability to accommodate, and any request to work a more flexible arrangement should be made prior to your acceptance of the provisional offer.

If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the 'Contact point for applicants' section.

Reasonable adjustment

We want to make sure no one is put at a disadvantage during our recruitment process because of a disability, condition or impairment. To assist you with this, we will reduce or remove any barriers where possible and provide additional support where appropriate. Please see our Disability Matters: How we can support you during our selection process booklet for more details.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

Contact Government Recruitment Service via as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.
Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals
Further information on nationality requirements

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 equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.