Non-Executive Director, Defence Intelligence

Defence Intelligence (DI) is part of Strategic Command in the Ministry of Defence and employs some 4,500 people in UK and overseas. Their work is exciting and fast paced, they deliver predicative intelligence analysis, specialist outputs and advice to support governmental strategic decision making for the security of the nation. Around 70% of their effort is focused on Defence, but they also enable and work in close partnership with the UK intelligence agencies, other Government departments and through a range of multilateral relationships.

As we face complex and growing threats in a digital era they need continually to enhance and embrace modern technologies available to deliver timely and reliable intelligence. DI need to continually respond to the challenge of exploiting increasing amounts of information by delivering a more data-centric approach, with greater enterprise-wide coherence, automation and connectivity. They are also seeking to promote a culture within the organisation which is focused on equality, diversity, empowerment, innovation and continuous improvement.

  • The Role
    You will be a member of the DI Executive Board and the PRIDE (Programme to Rationalise and Integrate the Estate) Board. The DI Executive Board is DI?s senior decision-making forum and governance body. It provides strategic direction and guidance, assurance on organisational performance and compliance with Departmental standards and statutory regulations. It benefits from independent, non-executive support and constructive challenge to the Chief of Defence Intelligence (CDI) and the Directors.

    Board members support CDI in his role as a Higher-Level Budget (HLB) holder. The Board meets monthly to approve, direct and evaluate future strategies, structures and plans. It is supported by the DI Review Transformation Board and a Shadow Board. Membership comprises CDI, Deputy Chief of Defence Intelligence, Director Cyber Intelligence and Information Integration, the Director Strategy and Enterprise Services, Head of DI Resources and a Non-Executive Director. You will be expected to attend the monthly DI Executive Board, the quarterly PRIDE Programme Board and provide support to ad hoc activities such as DI Senior Leadership team away-days and strategy discussions.
  • PRIDE Programme Board
    You will be a member of the PRIDE Programme Board (chaired at 2* level) (which meets Quarterly and the DI HLB Infrastructure Board (DCDI and Director Cyber Intelligence and Information Integration jointly chair) which meets directly after the PRIDE Board on alternate quarters (2 meetings per year). You will be expected to advise and challenge attendees on key issues, demanding evidence and identifying opportunities to improve the supply chain delivery process. You should highlight any identified incoherence and focus on ensuring pan-Defence Lines of Development (DLOD) capability solutions and build upon and align with infrastructure DLOD outputs. In the HLB Infrastructure Board your focus should be on the coherence with wider capability and investment activity being delivered through the MOD Equipment Plan, as well as the capability plans of allies and partners for the DI footprint both in the UK and overseas. You should deliver any feedback to CDI at the DI Executive Board or if immediate action is required through out of committee communication with CDI.

    You will be invited to contribute to DI Review implementation, including through advice to the Executive Board and participation in Senior Leadership Team development events and other discussions which will shape the strategic direction of the organisation.
  • Responsibilities

    Non-Executive Directors must have sufficient time and commitment to fulfil the role, which includes preparation time for meetings. Your role and responsibilities will include the following;  

    • Attending DI Executive Board and PRIDE Programme Board meetings, acting as an impartial and independent member, ensuring decisions are taken in the best interests of DI, Strategic Command and the Ministry of Defence;
    • Providing an external perspective to constructively challenge and analyse the management information submitted to the Board to support effective decision making;
    • Harnessing commercial awareness and experience to offer advice and guidance in a consultative capacity to CDI and other Board Members as required and providing feedback on Board performance;
    • Using financial acumen and commercial shrewdness to steer the logistics of strategic plans forward;
    • Understanding and critically evaluating strategic issues and getting to the heart of an issue quickly and asking pertinent questions;
    • Acting as an ambassador for DI to stakeholders, government departments, suppliers and those who may have an interest including the general public and media;
    • Executing due diligence with careful and considered foresight and approach to risk. 
  • Person Specification

    The role is open to UK nationals only.

    This role would suit someone who thrives on challenge and cares about national defence and security. This is a high-profile appointment. The next 12 months will be a busy period of change within DI and the successful candidate will help CDI build a collegial relationship with DI Executive Board and PRIDE Programme Board members.

    You will have a background in strategy, business change and innovation and a proven track record of operating in a large, complex organisation at executive level. You will also need the energy and resilience to fulfil the role, especially when the going gets tough so that the Board can work effectively through difficult circumstances.

    In addition, you must have the following essential skills and experience:


    • Board level experience in a large, complex changing organisation: Strong leadership skills with proven experience at senior and board level, ideally with a large, complex and changing organisation (ideally over £1bn operating budget);
    • People & transformation experience: A portfolio of high level 'people and transformation' skills including people strategy, change management, workforce planning, training, risk management, and performance management;
    • Public-sector experience: The ability to grasp people issues facing the Board in context with the Board's public-sector accountability to Parliament;
    • An understanding of governance: The ability to appreciate the legal and regulatory framework that DI operates within and its responsibilities and liabilities;
    • Energy and commitment: Investing the time to understand DI as an organisation, its internal and external environment and challenges, and keep up-to-date to stay on top of the brief;
    • The ability to engage and be passionate about DI business.


    • Defence sector experience: Experience in the Defence sector would be welcome but not essential;
    • Non-Executive experience.

    Other skills sought

    • Strong communication skills with the ability to provide an independent view to the Board and help ensure that it operates with an awareness of wider business standards;
    • The ability to hold management to account and raise issues which merit further investigation or analysis without raising an adversarial reaction.
    • Creative and flexible thinker, open to new ideas and able to listen sensitively to the views of others, inside and outside the committees, and modify views and constructively challenge;
    • Personal understanding of diversity & inclusion issues, and experience of overcoming the challenges in securing a balanced and representative leadership team;

    Security Clearance

    Security Clearance is a requirement of all DI posts, and all Non-Executive Directors are expected to exhibit the behaviours under the Seven Principles of Public Life and the Civil Service Code. This post requires a ‘DV’. Further details of vetting requirements can be found here

  • Diversity, Terms of Appointment and Application Process


    DI welcomes applications from all sections of the community; would be particularly pleased to receive applications from candidates from a BAME background and women as part of their strategy to increase diversity at all levels of Defence. DI 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. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.


    You will be remunerated for your appointment at the daily rate of £700 for up to 28 days work per annum. This allows for scheduled meetings of DI’s Executive Board, PRIDE Programme Board and a maximum of 15 other days for development events and other culture change activities briefings.  


    Reasonable travel expenses will be covered. You will be entitled to claim for travelling and reasonable related expenses incurred in attending meetings or making any other visits that may be required. 

    Application Process

    Please submit the following:

    • A copy of your CV;
    • A statement of suitability (maximum 2 pages) explaining how you meet the qualities required of a Non-Executive Director as set out earlier in this document;
    • The names and contact details of two referees. Please note that referees will be contacted if you are shortlisted for interview. WIG will seek your permission prior to approaching referees;
    • Equalities Monitoring Form (downloadable below).

    Documentation can either be submitted via the Apply Now button above, or by email to Patrick Reihill, Head of Talent via [email protected];

    If you have any questions about this opportunity, or would value a confidential discussion, please contact Patrick Reihill at [email protected] or on 0207 222 1166;

    The deadline for applications is Midday, Monday 26 October 2020;

    After the closing date, the appointment panel shall attend a shortlisting meeting on Wednesday 4 November 2020, assessing candidates’ suitability for the role based on evidence provided in the CV and statement;

    Interviews will be held on Wednesday 18 November 2020. Panel members are Krihna Dhanak (Director Strategy & Corporate Operations, Defence Equipment & Support), Laura Price (Deputy Director Human Resources, UK Strategic Command), Lt General James Hockenhull (Chief of Defence Intelligence), John Ridge (Director Strategy and Enterprise Services, Defence Intelligence);

    This organisation has requested that candidates do not contact them directly. Instead, if you know someone at the organisation, please mention this in your Reason for Application. Candidates discovered not respecting this may risk having their application terminated.

    WIG Defence Intelligence Job Specification October 2020 WIG-Equalities-Monitoring-Form 2020.docx