Director recruitment

Statement from the Chief Executive and Keeper

Jeff James, Chief Executive and Keeper, The National Archives

Thank you for your interest in the role of Director for Government.

The National Archives is many things to many different audiences.
For government, we are the custodian of the public record and trusted experts in managing, preserving and using information.

For the public, we provide free access to more than 1,000 years of the nation’s history and connect people with the millions of stories contained in our collection.

For the archive sector, we give leadership and support, helping archives to build the skills and capacity needed to sustain the nation’s archival heritage.

For the academic community and others engaged in scholarly research, we offer opportunities for collaboration and partnership across a broad range of disciplines.

Archives Inspire, our four-year strategy, sets out how we will need to think and organise ourselves differently, to meet the needs of each of our major audiences and to tackle our biggest strategic challenge – digital. We know that the funding climate will continue to be tough, but we also know that nothing is gained or achieved without ambition.

We have set ourselves five strategic goals. We will:

• provide expert advice and scrutiny to government, making sure that the record survives and thrives

• inspire the public with new ways of using and experiencing our collection

• be an effective leader and partner for the archive sector, to sustain and develop the nation’s collection

• advance knowledge through exemplary academic liaison and outstanding interdisciplinary research

• become a digital archive by instinct and design.

Archives Inspire is the first step in a journey that will see The National Archives transformed: as a partner across government and beyond; as a leader in cutting-edge research, and as a place to visit and be inspired. To achieve this transformation, The National Archives will need the advice, support and challenge of a strong and capable Executive Team.

As our Director for Government, your visionary leadership will transform and redefine our offer and services to the UK government. Possessing a keen political awareness, and a thorough understanding of our remit and responsibilities, you will support the Chief Executive and Keeper to meet their statutory obligations.

You will drive innovation and best practice across departments, fostering cross-government compliance with the Public Records Act, including the successful transition to the 20-year rule. Your exceptional networking, influencing and negotiation skills will grow and develop our relationships with a range of senior stakeholders and colleagues across Whitehall and the public sector.

Your expert understanding of the rapidly changing information management landscape across government and beyond will inform and build The National Archives’ capacity to identify and exploit new opportunities. In collaboration with our Digital Director, you will drive innovative digital capability across government, ensuring the preservation of the future – born-digital – public record.

There has never been a more exciting time to be part of The National Archives. If you have the experience, knowledge and skills to help us achieve our ambitions then I would be delighted to hear from you.


Jeff James, Chief Executive and Keeper

Apply. Closing date for applications: Friday 7 September 2018.