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Government seeks out new tech talent

A scheme has been launched that aims to recruit up to 20 of the best graduates from around the UK this year, who will apply their skills to public-sector IT projects

A fast-track graduate scheme to unearth the next generation of public-sector IT leaders has been launched by the government.

It's hoped the Civil Service Technology in Business Fast Stream will successfully recruit up to 20 of the best graduates from around the UK this year.

The UK government handles some of the largest IT programmes in the world and says it needs "exceptionally talented people" to help plan, deliver and manage technology.

Successful applicants to the Fast Stream will be selected for their potential to become chief information officers and leaders of large scale IT-enabled business change in the public sector.

The graduates will be placed in central government departments where they will receive ongoing training and development with the help of a senior mentor.

They will also have the chance to meet and work with key tech leaders across the public sector.

The full rollout of the programme comes after a successful trial, resulting in the recruitment of six graduates.

Sarah Scott, business management graduate and one of the recruits from the pilot, said she hadn't expected to work in government when she started her degree but said it's a long way from the "stereotypical image of dull computer experts".

Gillian Merron, the minister for transformational government, said the scheme is designed to make sure the UK's best graduates have the chance to apply their skills to Whitehall's "complex and exciting" tech projects.

Applications for the next intake are now being accepted. The deadline for submissions is 30 November.