Who is the programme for?

People who want the time, space and support to explore the next steps in their career, who are ready to give and receive feedback, be challenged and stimulated to think for themselves, and take whatever action is needed to achieve their career goals.

Is it only for women who want to be promoted within the civil service?

We support the civil service’s aim to increase the gender balance at management levels, however there will be no pressure on any individual participant to go for promotion. The course enables each participant to honestly examine her unique career aspirations. For some this will mean going for promotion, for some it might lead to a lateral move to a different area, and for others it might mean leaving the civil service to seek work elsewhere.

How do I enrol?

Book your place via the CSL website or by calling their helpdesk. A pdf version of your purchase order number is required to secure your place on the course.

I am on temporary promotion - can I enrol on the programme for that grade?

The programmes are geared up to women who are substantive at the relevant grades. We would advise you to enrol on the programme that reflects your substantive grade.

Will I need to devote extra time to the programme in addition to the 5 modules?

You will need to allow time for monthly 1-hour mentoring sessions with your mentor. In addition we encourage everyone to negotiate additional time for things like: work shadowing, spot mentoring and peer group meetings.

What’s the structure of the modules?

Module 1 is a two-day facilitated group module. Day 1 of modules 2-5 is facilitated in the whole group at a venue booked by CSL. The second day of Modules 2-5 are self-directed. Detailed guidance for getting the best from your self-directed days is provided at Module 1. Rooms are not provided for the self-directed days; Peer Groups decide where they want to meet, whether in an external venue or in one of their organisation’s meeting rooms.

What are the start and finish times for the modules?

Gather at 9.15am for a prompt 9.30am start for each of the facilitated days (both days of Module 1 and Day 1 of Modules 2-5). 4.30pm finish for the facilitated days of all modules except Module 3 which finishes at 5.00pm.

How will I be paired with a mentor?

As soon as you activate your Crossing Thresholds Personal Page (by clicking the link in your Welcome email) you will be able to see a list of currently available mentors. Following Module 1 you will be invited to request a mentor from the list. We do our best to keep the list of mentors up to date, however mentor circumstances can change at short notice so your request might be declined or timeout – in which case you will be prompted to approach someone else.

Additional needs

We are keen to support any additional learning needs. Please inform CSL at the time of booking of any logistical requirements, eg large text, access arrangements, etc. We also ask that you inform the course leader via your Personal Crossing Thresholds page (using the link in your Welcome email).

When will I receive joining instructions?

Joining instructions are sent out by CSL in advance of each module, normally 2 weeks prior to the module date. Where will the modules be held? All virtual modules are being held on Zoom. Please ensure you can support the Zoom app (some gov-issued devices do not allow Zoom in which case we recommend using a personal device where possible)

Is there any pre-course learning?

There is no prescribed pre-course learning. Prior to Module 1 please take some time to reflect on the things that are most important to you in your career/working life.

Will my performance on the course be assessed?

The course offers tools for career development and self-discovery, and there are no assessments as part of the course. We encourage participants to manage their own progress towards their goals using support from their mentors and peer groups. There will be no accreditation given at the end of the course.

What happens if I am unable to attend one of the modules?

Attendance at both days of Module 1 is required in order to benefit from the remainder of the programme. Please ensure when you book that you are able to attend all five module dates. If you subsequently miss one of the later modules we would advise you to have a catch up with your Peer Group as soon as possible after the module. You cannot join another cohort to catch up on a missed module. All module resources are available on your personal Crossing Thresholds pages, with access to our custom catch up videos for modules 3 + 4.

Is it possible to change programmes part-way through?

A key element of Crossing Thresholds is the ongoing peer support and networking. We work hard to create a supportive and conducive environment where participants can speak openly about their aspirations and challenges. The larger cohort is split into three Peer Groups who will spend time throughout the year working on shared projects. For all these reasons, it is not possible for delegates to move between cohorts.

What happens if I am promoted/change roles during the course?

Many participants are promoted or move to another role before and during their Crossing Thresholds programme. You are welcome to continue on the programme. For the reasons already stated, it is not possible or necessary to change cohorts. We strongly recommend that anyone changing departments seeks their new Line Manager’s support to stay on the programme. 

What happens if I leave the Civil Service during the course?

As your place has already been paid for in full, we encourage you to remain on the programme even if you leave the Civil Service. You are likely to find the peer support very valuable in your new role.

Can I cancel my place before Module 1?

Please contact the CSL Helpdesk.

Can I transfer from one programme to another before Module 1?

Please contact the CSL Helpdesk.