graduate scheme

Graduate Careers

Job description

With the right mix of minds, anything is possible

We’re the Government Communications Headquarters – GCHQ. We’re a world-leading intelligence, cyber and security agency with a clear purpose – to keep the UK and its citizens safe, at home, overseas, and online. We work against cyber-attacks, terrorism and serious crime.

So, everyone who works here, works towards that goal. But we always do it together, supporting each other every step of the way and learning as we go. We also work closely with our British Intelligence partners, MI5 and MI6. That means you’ll have one of the most interesting careers around.

Opportunities with GCHQ

We offer graduate roles and internships, as well as apprenticeships in software engineering and cyber security. With training and development opportunities for every role, you’ll always be developing new skills while protecting your country. As a graduate, you can join us in areas including language, analysis, mathematics and cryptography, and project management. We run regular campaigns for technology and engineering roles, including software engineers and cyber operations, as well as many others. You can also join us for a paid summer internship in languages, cyber security, maths, technology or one of our other areas.

Working here

Join us, and you’ll find that we work in a collaborative atmosphere, which helps us solve unusual problems in creative ways. In fact, your ideas will push boundaries and keep us a step ahead of ever-evolving threats.

Meanwhile, you’ll enjoy a work environment where you can be yourself. From a variety of employee networks (LGBT+, Women in Tech, ethnic minority and disabled staff), to excellent training and flexible work patterns, we do all we can to support your success and career.

To find out more, please visit our careers site.

At GCHQ diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission. To protect the UK, we need a truly diverse workforce that reflects the society we serve. This includes diversity in every sense of the word: those with different backgrounds, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, ways of thinking and those with disabilities or neurodiverse conditions. We therefore welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including those from groups that are under-represented in our workforce.

What we are looking for

Whatever role or area interests you, you’ll need ingenuity, attention to detail and a gift for communication and solving problems. However, beyond that, we don’t recruit a particular ‘type’ of person.

Our unique work relies on people with unique perspectives, so we welcome applications from everyone – regardless of age, experience, cultural background or sexual orientation. We’re also a Disability Confident employer, which means we’re committed to ensuring a fair and proportionate number of disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria for a role will be offered an interview.

To be eligible to apply, you must be a British Citizen. One of your parents must be a British Citizen or must have the nationality or citizenship from our approved list of countries (further information on our eligibility criteria can be found here). If you hold dual nationality, of which one component is British, you will nonetheless be considered. Candidates must normally have been resident in the UK for seven out of the last ten years. This is particularly important if you were born outside the UK. You can apply at the age of 17 years and 6 months, if successful you will not be offered a start date prior to your 18th birthday. Discretion is vital. You should not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member. Please note, you should only launch your application from within the UK. If you are based overseas, you should wait until you visit the UK to launch an application. Applying from outside of the UK will impact on our ability to progress your application. Further information on our eligibility criteria can be found on the Applying section.

Accepted degree subjects


Additional job details


Contract, dates and working times


How to apply

Click Apply to start your application now. This job will be available on Prospects until 30 September 2024

Don't forget to mention Prospects to employers when you contact them.

Closing date:  Continuous recruitment

To stay safe in your job search we recommend that you visit SAFERjobs, a non-profit, joint industry and law enforcement organisation working to combat job scams. Visit the SAFERjobs website for information on common scams and to get free, expert advice for a safer job search.