ProfileS - Kate James

Kate James

Department of Trade &
Industry, Government
Operational Research

After studying for my BSc in Management Science and PhD in Operational Research, I applied for a job with the Government Operational Research Service (GORS) and started work with the Department for Education & Employment.

At DfEE I was part of a team with particular responsibility for assessing the effectiveness of the National Strategies for Literacy and Numeracy. I felt that I was working on something of real national importance, particularly as the Government has laid such emphasis on improving education.

Because of the size of the Government O.R. Service I was able to broaden my experience and decided to move to the Department of Trade & Industry because the contrast with DfEE provided me with lots of new opportunities to develop professionally.

The Operational Research Unit at DTI operates as an internal consultancy, providing analysis and modelling to policy makers and managers across a very varied department. In my two years in Government O.R. I have already used a wide range of O.R. tools, including data envelopment analysis, system dynamics, forecasting and multi-criteria decision analysis.

A lot of attention has been paid to helping me to develop by providing training and fresh opportunities to stretch me. I've been encouraged to take on as much responsibility as I think I'm ready for, from problem structuring and project management, to handling customer relations. All of this has given me confidence and plenty of job satisfaction.

When I left university, I wanted a job where the work was interesting, varied and challenging, the environment was flexible and relaxed and where there was the opportunity to apply my skills in a variety of settings. The Government Operational Research Service couldnt have been a better choice!

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