Enhance your professional and personal wellbeing.

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Enhance your professional and personal wellbeing.

We aim to support the professional and personal wellbeing of everyone in Defra. Our benefits include generous annual leave, contributory pension, and staff bonus and recognition schemes. We also offer flexible working and a variety of learning and development opportunities.


Your pension is a valuable part of your total reward package, and you will be given the chance to join either:

Alpha – a career average pension scheme (defined benefit). That has an annual accrual rate of 2.32% and an employer contribution rate of up to 24.5% dependent upon pensionable salary. Employee contributions are also based upon your salary and contribution rates can be found here.

Partnership – a personal pension scheme. You do not have to make any payments to have a partnership pension account as your employer will make contributions anyway. If you do choose to contribute your employer will match your contributions up to a further 3% of pensionable salary. This is a type of pension where benefits are dependent on contributions and the growth of the pension fund.

Life assurance

Your pension will continue to provide valuable benefits for you and your family if you are too ill to continue to work, or die before you retire.

Generous Annual Leave and Bank Holiday Allowance

As a full-time new entrant to the Civil Service, or a Civil Servant on modernised terms and conditions, you will be entitled to 25 days’ annual leave (rising, over 5 years, to 30 days). If you are an existing Civil Servant on pre-modernised terms, these will remain the same.

In addition, you will receive 8 public holidays a year, plus an additional day in May to mark the Queen’s Birthday.

Staff Bonuses and Staff Recognition

As well as offering end of year Performance Awards to our top performers, we also have a Staff Recognition Scheme to reward exemplary work.

Learning and Development

From induction to ongoing learning and development, everyone in the Defra Group is supported to develop their skills and capabilities.

When you join (or return to) Defra you will start with an induction to the department, our work and policies. From then on you will have access to Civil Service Learning, which offers learning and professional development through world class providers. You will also have the opportunity to voluntarily engage, and work confidentially with, a mentor or coach to support your career development.