Head of People


  • Full Time

To apply for this job please visit about.apolitical.co.


What We Do

Apolitical is a global network and learning platform for government. Our mission is to build 21st century governments that work for people and the planet. We equip policymakers with the knowledge, skills and community they need to solve the world’s hardest challenges. Our platform is used by more than 140,000 public servants and policymakers in 160 countries, with members ranging from mayors, ministers, and heads of civil services to millennials pioneering digital innovations. Apolitical is backed by mission-driven investors around the world and by prestigious European Union innovation funding. Apolitical’s decision-making and team culture is guided by The Apolitical Leadership Principles and The Apolitical Charter.

The Role

This is a full time position. You would be joining a hybrid company, but would need to be based in (or near) London and happy to be in the office 1-2 days per week.


The Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate will have a minimum of 3 years relevant experience in a senior people role, such as CPO or Head of People.

You will have been responsible for building out and scaling people functions, ideally within a Series A company. You will be comfortable building out a people strategy and enhancing company culture, whilst assisting our senior leadership team to build a company people aspire to work for.

You embody our leadership principles. You’re looking for a mission driven role. You care about people and the planet and will strive to make Apolitical a fabulous place to work and flourish.

The Team

Apolitical is currently just over 50 people. Our People team will be made up of yourself, a Head of Talent (hiring for shortly) and our Operations Assistant, who splits her time across People & Ops. You will report directly into the CEO.

What good would look like after 6 months

  • You’ve made our first talent acquisition hire and – alongside them – revamped our hiring processes and brand.
  • You’ve put in place our DEI strategy and started implementing our short term wins.
  • You’ve found new ways for our employees to live out our leadership principles.
  • You’ve implemented a new system for capturing and reporting quantitative and qualitative people data – you know the pulse of the team at any point in time.
  • You’re completely in sync with the team’s needs and have ensured we have a suitable office space to accommodate our growing team.
  • You’ve developed our learning offering and ensured we have the right avenues for coaching and mentoring, where needed.
  • You continue to develop our avenues for giving free flowing feedback and building radical candour.
  • You’ve reviewed and are owning our full compensation structure (including our progression frameworks), from undertaking market reviews to updating our benefits package.
  • You’ve made gains in making Apolitical an even more fun and exciting place to work.

Essential Skills

  • Feedback-driven. You’ll be the type of person who is always striving to improve and, as a result, is constantly soliciting feedback and actively giving this to your peers and reports. We’re building a candid, open culture and it is critical that the person in this role can celebrate that as well as develop the company’s feedback muscle.
  • Kind and a pleasure to work with. Any role in an ambitious, fast moving startup will often be tough and demanding. We require someone who shows good humour and cares about those around them, whilst still getting the hard work done.
  • Smart problem-solver. You must be able to take charge and work out the best way to solve problems which are new to the company, whilst constantly questioning the ways in which we can improve our processes.
  • Self-aware and adaptable. Our company moves quickly and you will always be doing new things. You need to be self-aware and take charge of your own learning and develop the learning offering for our employees.
  • Sound judgement and high emotional intelligence. You have a good instinct for how to respond to situations and handle people – internally and externally – to achieve the best outcome. You know when to push back, as well as when to escalate an issue and get others involved.
  • Toggle between rapid action and wise reflection. You’ll be a detail-oriented person who maintains a high degree of accuracy. However, you must have the ability to zoom out and think strategically about where we’re going and how we need to adapt.

Closing Date: N/A – we will leave this role open and continue to accept applications until we’ve found the perfect candidate.

Please note that the earliest we will start replying to applicants will be 6th October.

Salary: £60,000 – £75,000

Please note that all applicants must have an existing right to work in the UK.


Please submit a CV and covering letter which is no longer than one page. This should detail your prior experience and explain why you are a good fit for this role. Please also complete the following questions.

Q1 Describe the most challenging professional situation you’ve been faced with as a senior people manager, how you responded (including mistakes made) and what you learned from it. (Max 250 words)

Q2. One of your first tasks will be to make our first talent acquisition hire. What are the key traits you’re looking for? How would you go about finding the ideal candidate? (Max 250 words)

Q3. Read our Charter and Leadership Principles (link here). Describe what resonates with you most strongly and why. (Max 250 words)


In addition to working with smart, kind people on one of the most important challenges of our time

  • Stock options: Our employee options plan gives you a stake in our vision.
  • Flexibility: Everyone works differently. Whether it’s early mornings, late nights or a day at home, we support what gives you energy and makes you effective.
  • Holidays: Unlimited holidays, trusting people to take what they need when they need. As a restorative reboot, we give everyone on the team the last Friday of every month off.
  • Office: Based in the beautiful Public Hall, in the heart of Westminster and overlooking the River Thames. Our Berlin office is in the fun Mitte district.
  • Maternity, paternity, and adoption leave: Generous maternity, paternity and adoption leave
  • Development: Learning and development budgets for books, conferences and courses. We also offer learning days.
  • Socials: Monthly board game evening (yes, we are a bit wonky) plus a range of other fun team events. We’ve taken these online since lockdown!
  • Knowledge-sharing: Every Friday we have talks in the office — from team members sharing their work and from their public service members, often when visiting London from around the world.
  • Wellbeing: We have registered for the UK’s Cycle-to-Work scheme, so you can buy a bike and cycling accessories tax-free. We have a fresh fruit bowl in the office. We have a subscription for all employees to HeathAssured, a leading workplace wellbeing provider.
  • Library: We have a constantly growing library, to which every team member contributes their favourite book. There’s also a bigger library in Public Hall
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