Generalist Fast Stream or reapply for Diplomatic?

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Toolson
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Hey guys!

So I applied for the fast stream hoping to get a place on the diplomatic fast stream, but failed at the video interview stage. I was though offered a place on the generalist scheme.

Obviously it's still a good opportunity, but I have always wanted to work internationally, and I worry that by joining the generalist fast stream I would restrict myself to working on domestic matters, which would be fine, but not my dream job.

I'm torn about whether I should accept the generalist role, or reapply next year in the hope of getting the diplomatic scheme. I don't really know whether it's possible to move from the generalist scheme to working in a diplomatic post afterwards, but it hardly seems likely.

I was wondering what people would do if they were in my shoes?

Thanks for your help, and good luck to anyone still in the application process!
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darkshadow1111
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Why not do both? accept the generalist scheme for now and then reapply for the Diplomatic scheme next year which you are allowed to do.
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Toolson
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(Original post by darkshadow1111)
Why not do both? accept the generalist scheme for now and then reapply for the Diplomatic scheme next year which you are allowed to do.
But by the time the application scheme opens next year I would have signed my contract and started my generalist scheme.
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Mimma
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(Original post by Toolson)
But by the time the application scheme opens next year I would have signed my contract and started my generalist scheme.
So? Signing your contract doesn't matter - you have a standard leave notice period in the CS.

You are overestimating how much difference there is b/w departments and roles (there can be crap diplomatic fast stream rolestoo ). You are also understimating how much difference 1 extra year of experience makes - if you reapply you will only join in Autumn 2020 (if you are succesfful for diplomatic next year and bare in mind it's really more competitive than generalist).

But by all means, if you have a better job lined up than generalist, reapply next year.
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Toolson
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BlueEyedGirl_
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From what I know about the civil service, getting in is the hard bit - once you’re in, changing departments is doable. Personally, I would say the generalist is a great scheme and gives you experience in the civil service which you can then put on an application to transfer departments after the fast stream finishes. Equally, you must have some interest in the generalist scheme in order to have applied in the first place? So maybe read over the scheme again to see if you would find it interesting.

The diplomatic scheme is so competitive that rejecting generalist just to apply for that one scheme again could be very risky, but if the diplomatic scheme is where your heart really is, then don’t do a job you won’t enjoy - reapply. Good luck with whichever you choose!
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Toolson
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(Original post by BlueEyedGirl_)
From what I know about the civil service, getting in is the hard bit - once you’re in, changing departments is doable. Personally, I would say the generalist is a great scheme and gives you experience in the civil service which you can then put on an application to transfer departments after the fast stream finishes. Equally, you must have some interest in the generalist scheme in order to have applied in the first place? So maybe read over the scheme again to see if you would find it interesting.

The diplomatic scheme is so competitive that rejecting generalist just to apply for that one scheme again could be very risky, but if the diplomatic scheme is where your heart really is, then don’t do a job you won’t enjoy - reapply. Good luck with whichever you choose!
Thank you! This was very helpful.

I think I would still enjoy the generalist scheme, and I suppose it is risky to reapply. I don’t know how possible it would be to move between departments after the scheme but it’s not as though reapplying for the dip scheme is a sure thing either.
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josephine07
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Hi! I am in the exact same boat. I am wondering if anyone knows how long the generalist fast stream is? (The one that starts in September 2019). I seem to remeber the website saying it is two years long, but now it has been changed and says three years. Thanks in advance!
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Toolson
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(Original post by josephine07)
Hi! I am in the exact same boat. I am wondering if anyone knows how long the generalist fast stream is? (The one that starts in September 2019). I seem to remeber the website saying it is two years long, but now it has been changed and says three years. Thanks in advance!
I'm pretty sure it's 3 years!
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Aimee996
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I’ve heard that for the diplomatic scheme there are only 3 positions available each year despite so many thousands applying.

After having spoken with the foreign and commonwealth office they have said that the best thing to do is get your foot in the door in whatever department of government and you can make connections and through those advance to other departments and opportunities.

Hope this helps.
Last edited by Aimee996; 9 months ago
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beccy95
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(Original post by Aimee996)
I’ve heard that for the diplomatic scheme there are only 3 positions available each year despite so many thousands applying.

After having spoken with the foreign and commonwealth office they have said that the best thing to do is get your foot in the door in whatever department of government and you can make connections and through those advance to other departments and opportunities.

Hope this helps.
Hey - just to let you know, there are way more than three positions available each year. I don't know the exact numbers, but I think around 70 were recruited in 2019.
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username4970330
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(Original post by beccy95)
Hey - just to let you know, there are way more than three positions available each year. I don't know the exact numbers, but I think around 70 were recruited in 2019.
70 seems quite a lot, they’re only recruiting 5 this year...
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beccy95
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(Original post by Sarahn678)
70 seems quite a lot, they’re only recruiting 5 this year...
'60+' is the official line, but they usually release the stats every year!
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deaalimani
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Hey, I'm thinking of applying to both this year, do you have any advice on how best to answer and pass the online tests?
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