It’s yours to Audit

A career in Audit at MI5, MI6 and GCHQ is a unique opportunity for a varied and interesting career that will give insight into the workings of the UK intelligence agencies; an opportunity to do something that makes a difference; and opens up countless opportunities for personal and professional growth.

Internal Audit and consultancy

Our auditors don’t just assess financial controls.

They assess covert surveillance, counter terrorism, agent running, international travel, emerging technologies and cyber threats.

The UK’s entire intelligence community.

So when you join us, you’ll have a huge scope and an even bigger impact.

It’s all yours to audit. 

Find out more about joining Internal Audit and Consultancy at MI5, MI6 and GCHQ. Apply today.

Audit Opportunities

We will encourage and support you through continued professional development. We are particularly interested in people with audit experience in the following areas:

The Audit Team

Listen to the below audio to discover more about what it’s like to work in our Audit Team.

View Audio Transcripts


I didn’t realise how many benefits there were to being an auditor in an intelligence agency. It’s not just the pride you get from doing the role – it’s the impact it has on your life. I was working in the commercial sector before I joined, and I was so used to working all sorts of hours. I could feel my laptop staring at me from across the room – it was just constant pressure.

The culture here really values having a ‘work-life’ balance. The organization and the team do not just pay this lip service. Flexi-time has been life-changing. Your workload really is yours to manage. So now I get to spend more time with my family, and I get more out of my working day.

I worked in the private sector before I came here, so I did take a slight salary cut. But the great pension and work-life balance more than make up for it. Not to mention the training. We get to know the agencies – exactly what they do and how they do it. And you’re always supported to work on your soft skills or even work towards professional qualifications. The learning never stops.

The Work

As auditors in the intelligence community, we focus on the riskiest parts of the business. But before I assess any high-impact risks, I need to understand exactly what’s involved. So I spend a lot of time getting to grips with exactly what our people do and what the mission is. I’ve even had the chance to shadow actual operatives, as it’s just the best way of getting to know the process.

Day-to-day, I work across a range of departments and I audit a range of projects. I might assess Agent Running Compliance one week, and assess Digital Contagion risks the next. No matter the project, I’m out and about meeting people and learning about different challenges. It’s great to get away from my desk and engage with others.

Every agency has a slightly different focus, but no matter who I’m supporting, I’m always analysing information and solving problems. I have a really big impact on the agencies’ work to keep the country safe.

We’re also encouraged to follow up on our projects and see what impact we’ve had. I love how much variety and independence I’m given, and I love that I’m helping to protect the UK. I never imagined I’d have such a rewarding role and impactful role in audit.

The People

We audit really serious risks, so everyone really appreciates our work. We get to spend time with senior stakeholders and we’re often the first ones to be invited to a meeting. I always feel really valued by everyone across the agencies.

It’s such a supportive environment – everyone pulls together and is really happy to help out. We’re all motivated by the fact we’re protecting lives, not money. And, because of the complexity of what we do, we all ask each other for advice and trust each other’s opinions.

To be an auditor here, you have to love learning. Technology is the biggest risk we face, so we proactively keep up with innovations and changes. It’s the only way we can ask the right questions and challenge in the right places. Everyone’s dedicated to doing to the best work we can and getting the best outcomes. I’ve never worked with such talented and committed people before – it’s really inspiring.

Careers in Audit FAQs

We hope the information will encourage you to apply with confidence for an open position with MI5 Audit

Yes. We support training through the Chartered Institute of Internal Auditors for you to gain certified or chartered status. We also support continuing professional development (CPD) requirements for a range of qualifications, including ACA, ACCA and CISA.

Professional development is a cornerstone of our work – maintaining the trust of our clients means having a suite of skilled practitioners in various disciplines across the team. 

Yes. Work/life balance is important to us.  Flexi-time offers you the chance to work the hours that suit you, with no set formal hours. If you need to come in late or leave early, you can make up the time another day. Similarly, if there are times you need to work longer than usual, you can recoup this another day as time off in lieu. 

Yes. In addition to flexi-time, there are a variety of flexible working arrangements on offer. These include part time working, job sharing and compressed hours. Flexible working arrangements are commonplace and well-supported among the team. For more information on the options available, please see here.

The team are split between London and Cheltenham as their base locations. There will be occasional travel between these sites, and the opportunity for overseas travel if this interests you.

There is no typical progression path. Once you have joined and completed your initial posting (typically three years), your career is in your hands. With support from your manager, you may wish to pursue progression with the team, or look to gain a cycle of experience in other parts of the business, for example in operational or intelligence sections.

The team has a diverse mix of professional and personal backgrounds. We are a group of experienced professionals with a blend of career auditors, specialists and consultants. Alongside those with expertise in corporate areas such as finance, HR and IT, we also recruit individuals with experience of the operational realities the UK Intelligence Community faces in carrying out its unique mission. 

One of the best parts of our job is the variety - you can expect to be working on a range of different projects and meeting with stakeholders from across the agencies. You might start your day at the MI6 headquarters with a planning meeting for the upcoming overseas audits, then meet with legal officers to discuss compliance with new regulations before presenting emerging audit findings to the MI5 Director responsible for Agent Handling. Whatever you do, you can be sure that you will have a big impact on the work the agencies do to keep the UK safe.

Who we collaborate with

To find out more about the other agencies, please visit their sites

Why join MI5?

A career at MI5 is like no other. Not only is it rewarding and unique but the variety here is like no-where else. It is this variety that means most people stay at MI5 as they are able to fulfil all their career ambitions here without ever having to leave. We are also committed to rewarding the people who work for us and demonstrating our appreciation for their vital contribution by offering an excellent range of benefits. And due to the nature of our work it means you can’t take it home with you, so when you leave the office you really do leave your work behind you, providing you with an excellent work-life balance. Whatever role you perform, you will be directly contributing to keeping the country safe.