In Summary - Civil Service - Third Secretary
This role involves advising the government on Ireland's external relations and being the official communication channel for foreign governments and international organisations.
Civil Service - Third Secretarys typically work in the following Career Sectors:
Videos & Interviews
Fiona Devlin, Third Secretary
Fiona is currently working in the Legal Division of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. After completing a law degree in Trinity College and a masters in Edinburgh, she worked in the Embassy of Ireland to the Netherlands for two years, as Liaison Officer for International Organisations
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The Work - Civil Service - Third Secretary
Third Secretaries are initially assigned, for about 2 or 3 years, to a range of responsibilities in the headquarters of the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin. During this period, under the guidance of experienced colleagues, they are involved in aspects of the work of a number of divisions (Political, EU, Overseas Development Aid, Foreign Earnings, and Anglo-Irish).
They also receive on-the-job training in such areas as the preparation of analysis and research papers; drafting of briefing material for the Minister and for EU meetings; liaison with Irish missions abroad and with other Government Departments.
On being posted to an Irish Embassy or Consulate abroad, the Third Secretary will become involved in many aspects of the mission's activities, particularly such areas as the provision of consular assistance to Irish citizens; assisting Irish business contacts in local markets and generally in the promotion of foreign earnings; trade and economic reporting to the Department in Dublin; providing information on Ireland and briefing the foreign press on Irish affairs.
Interests - Civil Service - Third Secretary
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.
They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.
Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and are drawn to commerce, trade and making deals. Some pursue sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or in management roles in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.
A Third Secretary can expect to divide his/her time between service in the Department in Dublin and in over 40 Irish missions abroad. Graduates are required with the skills to undertake the demanding and varying responsibilities of the position and also demonstrate that they have the potential to represent Ireland abroad and to progress to the most senior positions of the diplomatic service.
For this reason, a high level of academic attainment is required (first or second class honours degree or Solicitor/Barrister qualification).
Candidates are also expected to demonstrate a wide range of skills and qualities in the course of the selection process. In order to be effective in the role of a Third Secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs, you will need to be:-
- able to produce thorough and comprehensive evaluations of a complex situation, and suggest practical recommendations for action
- highly capable of planning projects in detail and anticipating problems
- adept at co-ordinating your own duties/workload and that of others, to ensure accurate project delivery to deadlines
- excellent at communicating in a clear and accurate manner (either written or verbal) while making every effort to fully understand information received from others
- very comfortable at building and maintaining good relationships with a wide range of people, so that cooperation can be maximised and conflict minimised
- strong at presenting a position and persuading others of its benefit
- prepared to take personal responsibility for completing work and to put forward solutions to problems
- willing to apply full energy and commitment to fulfilling your own role within Foreign Affairs
- interested in Irish public affairs and in international relations
Entry Requirements - Civil Service - Third Secretary
The key entry level grades for graduates in the Civil Service include the Executive Officer, the Administrative Officer and the Third Secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and other professional roles such as Statistician, Economist and many more.
Competitions held by the Public Appointments Service are advertised on www.publicjobs.ie
Last Updated: April, 2015
Pay & Salary - Civil Service - Third Secretary
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 27k - 49k
Last Updated: April, 2015
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Civil Service - Third Secretary
No shortages have been identified for this occupation.
National Skills Bulletin 2018