Lead Technical Architect
Job Title: Lead Technical Architect
Client: Ministry of Justice - Digital & Technology
Contract Length: 6 Months
Pay Rate: £700 per day
IR35 Status: Outside IR35
Location: London & Sheffield
Ministry of Justice Digital and Technology Services
We design, build and support user-centred digital and technology services for the justice system: services that make a real difference to our staff, members of the public and their families who use them. Millions of people every year interact with our services, and Digital & Technology play an important role in improving access to justice and making that experience much easier and less distressing.
We are using digital, data and technology to build capability, work smarter and more efficiently. We want to create a digitally enabled end-to-end justice system which can adapt and respond to changing needs. We were the first digital team in a government department, and the first to deliver an exemplar service, with experts in web development, design, delivery and product management and user research, alongside around 50 organisations, including the courts service and Government Digital Service (GDS).
We’re looking for talented and tenacious people to join our digital teams in London, Birmingham and Sheffield to take the lead in creating world-class services in the justice system. We use cutting-edge agile software development approaches to make rapid but meaningful improvements to public services that live up to the unique challenges of MOJ's responsibility to society.
Our Technical architects have a good understanding of a broad range of technologies and are able to converse easily with and translate between non-technical stakeholders and technical practitioners. They are able to switch between different problems and responsibilities and are directly involved in service delivery
A lead technical architect works with multiple projects or teams on problems that require broad architectural thinking. They are responsible for leading the technical design of systems and services, and can justify and communicate their design decisions.
They assure other services and system quality, making sure the technical work fits into the broader strategy for government. They explore the benefits of cross-government alignment. They provide mentoring within teams and provide leadership to other architects.
? Define and own the technical strategy of digital products/ services
? Undertake structured analysis of technical issues, translating this analysis into
technical designs that describe a solution
? Working with software developers, define the high-level architecture of our digital
products, platforms and services; how it fits into the wider MOJ digital estate, how it
should be built and structured, which language, framework and other technologies
should be used, etc
? Lead the set-up and configuration of developer tooling, workflow and pipelines
within agile product teams
? Monitor trends in existing and emerging technologies, evaluating and identifying
new opportunities, integrations and solutions
? Own and manage relationships with technical and non-technical stakeholders, and
external technical contacts to influence/ make the case for technical interventions,
contribute to business cases and translate technical concepts
? Look for deeper issues that need fixing and opportunities to reuse components
? Help publicise our achievements and learning through blog posts, events, etc
? Occasionally participate in 2nd line support during office hours, and sometimes out
of hours (for which you’ll be paid an allowance and further hourly payment when on
? Assist with recruitment
Senior technical architects, in addition to the above will also:
? Take a leading role in implementing the technical strategy for a business unit or
? Support junior colleagues in reaching agreement with senior stakeholders, providing
direction and challenge
? Proactively identify technical problems and translate these into non-technical
descriptions that can be widely understood
? Mentor and coach junior colleagues
Lead technical architects, in addition to the above will also:
? Define, maintain and champion the technical strategy for a business unit or agency
? Work with Heads of Digital Agency/ senior management to align the technical
strategy with wider business objectives
? Work with the Head of Profession and colleagues on profession-based activities (and
cross-profession) such as defining standards and guidance around best practice
? Participate in TA resource planning for your business unit or agency
Knowledge and skills required to do this job:
? Turning business problems into technical design - The ability to work with business and technology stakeholders to translate business problems into technical designs. Creates
an optimal design through an iterative process, aligning the user need with the system requirements and organisational objectives. Expert at designing systems characterised
by high levels of risk, impact and business or technical complexity.
? Strategy - Capable of producing strategy for technology that meets business needs. Able to create, refine and challenge patterns, standards, policies, roadmaps and vision statements. Senior roles tend to be more proactive as they set the strategy. Junior roles tend to be more reactive, responding to the strategy. Capable of defining and challenging strategies, patterns, standards, policies, roadmaps and vision statements. Capable of providing proactive advice and guidance for their definition across the organisation.
? Bridging the gap between technical and non-technical - Translates technical concepts between software engineering, delivery management and service management so they are understood by all. Expert at mediating and mending relationships, communicating with stakeholders at all levels.
? Making and guiding decisions - Capable of making and guiding effective decisions, explaining clearly how the decision has been reached. The ability to understand and resolve technical disputes across varying levels of complexity and risk. Able to make decisions characterised by medium levels of risk and complexity and recommend decisions as risk and complexity increase. Able to build consensus between services or independent stakeholders.
? Understanding the whole context - The ability to look beyond the immediate technical problem and identify the wider implications. ‘Zooming out’ in three dimensions - knowing relevant historical context and future impact, understanding how current work fits in broader contexts and strategies, and looking for deeper underlying problems and opportunities. Able to understand trends and practices within the broader organisation and how these will impact their work. Able to look for deeper underlying problems and opportunities. Can anticipate problems before they occur and identify the impact of changes to policy
? A solid background in version control with Git, and experience of automated testing techniques, continuous integration, automated deployment pipelines and associated infrastructure.
? Experience of introducing practices such as TDD, continuous integration, continuous delivery, and DevOps to teams
? Experience working with cloud infrastructure and container environments
? Practical knowledge at many levels of the web stack, from front-end code down to infrastructure and networking
? A working knowledge of unix-like operating systems such as Linux and Mac OS X
? Governance - Understands technical governance and is able to participate in or deliver the assurance of a service. This capability becomes increasingly critical at senior role levels. Capable of evolving and defining governance and taking responsibility for collaborating and supporting in wider governance.