The Scottish Public Pensions Agency is an Agency of the Scottish Government. Our principal role is to administer the pensions for employees in the National Health Service, Teachers’, Police and Fire-fighters’ pension schemes in Scotland. The Agency administers these public service pension schemes on behalf of Scottish Ministers with an annual pension spend to over 200,000 pensioners of more than £2.5 billion.

We are seeking a talented Senior Python Software Engineer to join our team and take the lead in developing and maintaining new software for our pensions administration service. This role is an exciting opportunity to be at the forefront of improved services for Scottish public sector workers. The post involves designing, implementing, and optimizing Python-based applications for pension management, award calculations, contributions, benefits, and projections. You will have a background in software engineering, experience in Python programming, and an understanding of complex numerical calculations.

As a Software Engineer, you will have established software development expertise and a strong focus on delivering consistently to a high quality. This will involve being instrumental in the successful design and implementation of applications, APIs and other components. You will work as part of a small team to ensure successful delivery of high profile programmes of work.

A developer delivers software components that form part of a product. At this role level, you will: develop software to meet user needs, follow best practice guidelines and help to improve those guidelines, write clean, secure and well-tested code, coach and mentor more junior colleagues, and operate the services you build and identify issues in production.

This post attracts a £5000 Digital, Data and Technology (DDaT) pay supplement after a 3 months DDaT competency qualifying period. Pay supplements are temporary payments designed to address recruitment and retention issues caused by market pressures and are subject to regular review. This post is part of the Scottish Government DDaT profession. As a member of the profession, you will join the professional development system, currently BCS RoleModelplus.


• Manage service components to ensure they meet business needs and performance targets, support specific activities to improve development processes and identify obvious deficiencies in development processes. Help fix faults following agreed procedures, and carry out agreed maintenance tasks on infrastructure.
• Participate in the information security process; design and implement embedded security controls in solutions and services, competently applying a modern standards approach and guiding others to do so.
• Collaborate with others when necessary to review specifications, and use the agreed specifications to design, code, test and document programs or scripts of medium-to-high complexity, using the right standards and tools.
• Participate in team prototyping, and advocate for the use of prototypes and testing with others; establish design patterns and iterate them, using a variety of prototyping methods and choose the most appropriate.
• Translate logical designs into physical designs; produce detailed designs and effectively document all work using required standards, methods and tools, including prototyping tools where appropriate.
• Design systems characterised by managed levels of risk, manageable business and technical complexity, and meaningful impact; build and test simple interfaces between systems, working on more complex integration as part of a wider team.
• Collaborate with user researchers, representing users internally and champion user research to focus on all users. Prioritise and define approaches to understand the user story, guiding others in doing so.

• Apply your expertise in Python and Java programming to ensure successful delivery of high profile projects, working as part of a multi-disciplinary digital team to support and inform the full development lifecycle of new features and products, applying your expertise to benefit both colleagues and end users.


  • Improving Performance
  • Analysis and Use of Evidence
  • Communications and engagement
  • Self-Awareness

Essential Criteria & Qualifications

No specific qualifications required for this post.

Essential Criteria

1. Experience of writing programmes and scripts using Python, using agreed specifications to independently design, code, test and document programmes or scripts of medium-high complexity, using the right standards and tools.
2. Experience of engineering systems with a variety of technologies and patterns; designing systems, choosing appropriate technology, and embedding security controls.
3. Ability to collaborate effectively on initiatives to improve overall team performance, working as part of a small and agile team to meet service needs.
4. Experience of taking ownership of the end-to-end process of delivering a feature within agreed project parameters.

Interview and Assessment 

  • Approximate Timeline
  • Sift Date – beginning of July
  • Interview Date – end of July
  • Start Date – October/November


This post is based at SPPA Galashiels, Tweedbank, TD1 3TE. SPPA is currently operating a hybrid working model. Staff are generally required to attend the office one day a week.

Minimum Time in Post

You will be expected to remain in post for a minimum of three years unless successful at gaining promotion to a higher Band or Grade.

In the event that further posts are required, a reserve list of successful candidates will be kept for up to 12 months.

Sponsorship Information 

Changes to legislation concerning Skilled Worker Visa Sponsorship were implemented on 04/04/2024. If you think you may require Visa Sponsorship it is important that prior to applying you read the official Home Office guidance to confirm eligibility. Any applicants that are not eligible for sponsorship will be withdrawn at either application stage or the point of offer, with any provisional offer of employment withdrawn.

How to Apply 

To apply for this post, you will need to provide the information requested below via the online application process.

Please submit a CV outlining your relevant skills and experience for the role (no more than 2 sides of A4) and a personal statement (of no more than 750 words) before the closing date.

When considering how your experience relates to the role, please tailor your CV and personal statement to reflect the role, the Essential Criteria and skills as described in the job description.

Please enter your personal statement in the text box provided.

Additional information

For further information, please download and review the “Person Specification” which you will find below.

Person Specification Band B

The post is a full-time role, but staff with different working patterns are invited to apply, and we will assess proposed working patterns against the business requirements for this post.

For further information on this vacancy, please contact [email protected]

Scottish Government’s ambition is to be a world leading, diverse employer where people can be themselves at work. We want to help you demonstrate your full potential whatever type of assessment is used. If you require any adjustments to our recruitment process, please let us know via [email protected]

As part of any recruitment process, Scottish Government and associated public bodies collects and processes personal data relating to job applicants and applicants for public appointments.

Personal information you provide in the recruitment process will be made available to Scottish Government and our additional data processors. 

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