The government\u00a0is recruiting a Chief Digital Information Officer to oversee the digital, data and technology (DDaT) function across\u00a0Whitehall. The postholder will be the first digital leader in government to hold a\u00a0permanent secretary-level position \u2013 the most senior\u00a0grading\u00a0in the civil service.\nCabinet Office minister Oliver Dowden announced that he had created\u00a0the position\u00a0at the Sprint 19 Government Digital Service (GDS) conference in London on 19 September.\n"This will be a role at permanent secretary level \u2013 the first time, I believe, someone at permanent secretary level has been appointed to lead a function," he said.\nRead next: US Government CIO Suzette Kent advocates greater powers for CIOs\n"That's a signal of how important we think effective, integrated online government is. Their job will be to ensure that we deliver cross-government strategies for transformation, data, cyber security, and innovation.\n"They will design and implement standards which improve delivery outcomes, reduce risk and enable value for money in departments. Crucially, they will ensure that we are equipping government departments with the skills needed to reform, develop and thrive."\nFilling the role\nThe CDIO will be responsible\u00a0for shaping and delivering the government's innovation and transformation strategies, overhauling its legacy IT systems, strengthening its cyber security, improving capability, and leverage data and emerging technologies to design and deliver citizen-centric services.\u00a0The\u00a0postholder will\u00a0work closely with Dowden and\u00a0report to civil service chief executive John Manzoni.\nThe\u00a0appointee\u00a0will take\u00a0direct accountability for around 800 DDaT professionals in the Government Digital Service (GDS). The inclusion of this duty has called into question the future of GDS Interim Director-General Alison Pritchard, as her position previously included responsibility\u00a0for the DDaT function.\nThe government had originally advertised the newly created position in April, but closed the job posting before\u00a0making an appointment. The\u00a0role has now been elevated to a permanent secretary-level position, with a salary that has increased from\u00a0\u00a3149,000 to\u00a0\u00a3180,000.\nRead next: Top UK Government CIOs, CTOs, CDOs and other IT leaders\nThe recruitment process is surprisingly short for such a high-profile position. The closing date for applications is 7 October. Assessment weeks will commence on 11 and 18 November before final interviews take place on 29 November.\nThe job description says the chosen candidate will have an\u00a0"established international profile and be respected as a senior thought leader across the profession, with a strong track record for delivery in complex systems".\n"We're looking for someone world-class, with the skills and experience to up the pace of transformation and be your champion within Whitehall," said Dowden.