Location: Ireland: Dublin, Dundalk, Galway, Kildare, Limerick, Sligo

Opportunity: 6-month returnship

Start date: 30 September 2024

Apply by: 27 June 2024 (3pm)

*Applications have now closed*


The Department of Public Expenditure, National Development Plan, Delivery and Reform (DPENDR), on behalf of the Irish Civil Service, is partnering with Career Returners to launch the Civil Service ARC (Assisted Return to Career) Programme. This programme aims to support those who have taken time out of work for at least 2 years to re-launch their careers, update their skills, and gain experience in a supportive environment.

The ARC Programme

The central objective of the ARC Programme is to promote a more inclusive labour market for skilled workers seeking a return to work following a significant break in their professional career for caring, health or other reasons. This is achieved through the provision of paid and mentored work placements, with participating employers in the Civil Service. You will receive specialised coaching, within a supportive peer group, from Career Returners to support your return to the workplace.


Successful applicants will be placed in one of the following Civil Service organisations for the duration of their placement:

  • Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth
  • Department of Defence
  • Department of Social Protection
  • Public Appointments Service
  • Office of the Revenue Commissioner

Opportunities at Higher Executive Officer (HEO) Level are available for candidates with skills and experience in the following specialist areas:

  1. Human Resources (HR) – Dublin
  2. Finance and Accounting – Dundalk, Dublin, Limerick, Galway and Kildare
  3. Information Communication Technology (ICT) – Dublin and Sligo

Higher Executive Officers hold significant responsibility in Shaping the Future of Ireland. They play a key role in implementing policy and strategy and in delivering a World Class Service to the State and to the People of Ireland. More information on the opportunities is provided in the Candidate Information Booklet.

Target Candidates

You will be an experienced professional who has the right to work in Ireland and who has had a career break of 2 years or more for caring, health or other reasons. You will be looking to re-enter the workforce or to pivot back to a role more aligned with your experience and skills.

You will have achieved a qualification and have skills and experience relevant to the stream which you are applying for. Required qualifications for each stream are listed in the Candidate Information Booklet.

About the Irish Civil Service

The role of the Civil Service is to support the government of the day to develop and implement its policies, both at home and abroad. Working in the Civil Service will provide you with opportunities to work on initiatives that will help Ireland respond to the challenges of a changing world. This is an ideal career path for returning professionals strongly motivated to serve the people of Ireland.

The Civil Service is a diverse and inclusive workforce, with ample opportunity for progression and upskilling. You can learn more about career paths in the Civil Service here

Find out more and apply

Further information on the programme, the opportunities and how to apply are outlined here

Complete the online application form for the relevant area and submit by 3pm on Thursday, 27 June 2024. The form will ask you for information on yourself, your employment experience (paid or unpaid) and why you want to participate in this programme.

Shortlisting will be carried out week commencing 8 July, with interviews in late July and early August.

The Civil Service is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and encourages applications under all nine grounds of the Employment Equality Act.