1. Commitment Statement
The Trust gives the commitment that all employees or job applicants will be assessed only according to their capability to carry out a given job, based on justifiable, objective criteria which are clearly related to the duties of the job.
Employee recruitment is an important factor in the Trust’s ability to provide services effectively and efficiently.
It is also essential that the Trust complies with employment legislation and applies sound professional practice throughout the recruitment process.
Additionally, it is recognised that the recruitment process is high profile interface with the general public and, therefore, the Trust should strive to project a positive image and display the highest level of standards, conduct and professionalism.
This policy takes into account and incorporates those principles detailed within the:
(a) CoSLA Code of Recruitment and Selection
(b) Data Protection Act 1998, as amended
(c) Equality Act 2010
(d) Local Government and Housing Act 1989
(e) The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exclusions and Exceptions)(Scotland) Order 2003 as amended
The principles contained within this policy are designed to ensure that the Trust:
4.1 Complies with employment legislation and best practice;
4.2 Recruits in an efficient and cost-effective manner, and
4.3 Adopts the principles of fairness, constituency and equality.
This policy applies to all applicants seeking employment with the Trust, including Chief Officers.
6. Equality of Opportunity in Employment
The Trust is committed to the principles of equality of opportunity and details of these commitments are set out in the Policy of Equality of Opportunity in Employment.
Briefly, the Trust is committed to ensuring that no employee or job applicant receives less favourable treatment than any other on any grounds including race, colour, nationality or ethnic or national origins, religion, sex, sexuality, marital status, age, disability or membership or non-membership of a trade union or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.
In line with the general commitment to equality, the following actions will be taken:
6.1.1 The Trust will sample, monitor and audit its recruitment activities, to assess adherence to policies, legislation and general best practice;
6.1.2 A qualified human resources practitioner will be available, as required, to offer assistance and advice on the application of this policy;
6.1.3 The majority of Interview Panel members will have successfully completed the in-house accredited Recruitment training course, and
6.1.4 Where a member of the Interview Panel has a personal relationship with a candidate, say a family relationship or a close friendship, that could reasonably be seen as compromising their impartiality, such interest should be declared and the member must not take part in the selection process.
In addition, the Trust recognises its role in the alleviation of social exclusion and is committed to a positive approach with regard to applications from under represented groups in the workforce. . To actively encourage applications from such groups, the Trust will also ensure:
6.2.1 Participation in the Guaranteed Job Interview Scheme for applicants self-assessed as having a disability;
6.2.2 All jobs will be advertised externally, except as otherwise provided for this policy;
6.2.3 Minimum essential criteria will not be imposed so as to exclude any applicants, unless this exclusion can be objectively supported.
6.2.4 Advertisements will be distributed as widely as possible, and
6.2.5 If a group within the community in under-represented within the workforce, vacancies may be positively promoted within this group, , without prejudice to other applicants.
7. Smoking Policy
It is the Trust’s intention that the harmful effects of tobacco smoke on non-smokers should be minimised, and as a consequence, the Trust operates a ‘Smoking in Trust Premises’ policy applicable to all employees of the Trust.
In general, smoking is prohibited in Trust offices, reception areas, or any other enclosed premises within the Trust, except in designated areas, where it is reasonably practicable to provide such areas. Nor will smoking be permitted in any Trust Vehicle, either by employees or by any non-employees being transported.
8. Application Forms
By standardising the information requested and the format in which it is presented, each applicant is encouraged to provide information directly relevant to the essential requirements of the job. This encourages equality of opportunity, by ensuring each candidate has the same opportunity to detail how their experience is suitable to the duties of the job and, in addition, allows for standard analysis of information provided by applicants.
As a consequence, curriculum vitae, or other additional unsolicited information provided by the candidate, will not be accepted as an alternative to completing the application form, or considered in the selection process, unless specifically requested in the additional information provided on the job.
9. Monitoring Information
In line with best practice, the Trust’s application forms exclude reference to age, sex, marital status, nationality, ethnic origin, and forenames. Such data is not released to the recruitment panel and is collected separately for equal opportunities monitoring purposes.
Candidates are also asked to provide information pertaining to their disability and any reasonable adjustments that may be required to the selection process of the work environment,
10. Recruitment Advertising
To ensure compliance with equality of access and social inclusion, recruitment campaigns will not usually be restricted to one particular medium or advertising venue. The Trust also understands that a short-term saving in recruitment costs may lead to a long-term loss, if suitable employees are not recruited and retained, The decision on the choice of suitable advertising media will be influenced by the grade and level of the post; the professional, technical or specialist skills and experience required and the prevailing economic or market circumstances impacting on the availability of suitable candidates, as well as budgetary constraints.
Advertisements will focus on the objective and demonstrate abilities required to fill the vacancy and will be advertised to the widest practical audience, using a cost effective medium appropriate to each vacancy.
However, the Trust reserves the right to restrict external recruitment advertising in the following circumstances:
10.1 The vacant post is of a short-term temporary nature and may be filled by an existing employee of the Trust on a temporary basis, e.g. maternity cover, sickness cover, or
10.2 The Trust has an agreed professional training scheme whereby trainees, who are concluding their training period, are entitled to be considered for any suitable vacancies that arise; or
10.3 The Trust has chosen to restrict recruitment advertising to protect the legislative rights of existing employees of the Trust, e.g. in a potential redundancy situation.
11. Job Description
The job description will be included within the information pack for each job, to allow candidates to assess their capabilities against the objective responsibilities of the job.
The content of the job description will form the basis against which an Employee Specification will be created for use by the interview panel.
12. Employee Specification
The Employee Specification will:
12.1 Describe the experience, abilities and skills required by the job holder to successfully undertake the duties of the job;
12.2 Divide these requirements into ‘essential’ and ‘desirable’ criteria;
12.3 Be clear and objective;
12.4 Be based on necessary and measurable requirements, and
12.5 In conjunction with the job description, be the basis of the job advertisement.
Shortleeting will conform on those items explicitly recorded in the job description and the employee specification as relevant to the job and be based on extent to which candidates can be assessed from their application form to possess the abilities required to fulfil the duties of the job.
Candidates, at this stage, will only be assessed against the relevant, clearly identified requirements for the job.
14. Supplementary Selection Methods
The Trust may choose, in certain circumstances, to ask candidates to undertake supplementary exercises in relation to their application/interview, for example, assessment centres, aptitude or skills tests or presentations to Interview Panels etc.
If such an exercise is included in the recruitment process, the Trust will strive to ensure that the aptitudes, skills ect, being examined are essential for the job; are being examined in an objective and non-discriminatory matter and that reasonable alternative mechanisms are available, where feasible, for those individuals self-assessed as having a disability which might impact on their ability to complete the exercise.
Other than in the most exceptional circumstances, two references, which the Trust deems to be satisfactory, are required for successful candidates, one of which must be from their line manager in their present or last employment, if applicable.
Those individuals who have not worked since leaving school/college/university etc, should provide a reference from their last educational establishment.
Although there may be exceptions, personal references from those such as colleagues, friends or relatives will not be acceptable.
The objective of the recruitment interview is to obtain the maximum amount of legitimate information, from the recruitment process, to make an informed decision on the candidate’s suitability for the job.
The composition of the Interview Panel should comprise those officers with a supervisory responsibility in relation to the post, although officers of similar responsibility or undertaking a similar function may be included.
Whilst the size of Interview Panels is not prescribed, they must comprise of at least two people and, where possible, a gender balance should be sought.
The interviews should:
16.1 Be conducted by employees, the majority of whom have undergone appropriate training;
16.2 Provide additional specific information relevant to the vacancy under consideration;
16.3 Be structured around a consistent set of questions which mirrors and explores the requirements contained within the employee specification;
16.4 Incorporate additional legitimate questions for panel members to explore issues raised in individual application forms, and
16.5 Allow candidates the opportunity to ask questions.
17. Medical Questionnaire/Examination
In line with the terms of the Equality Act 2010, job applicants will not be asked to complete a medical questionnaire (or undergo a medical examination) until a job offer has been made to them. A job offer can be conditional subject to receipt of a satisfactory medical report.
Individuals self-assessed as having a disability will be subject to the same medical review process. However, the Trust will endeavour to undertake any reasonable adjustment to facilitate employment.
18. Criminal Convictions
A number of jobs within the Trust are covered (excepted) under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exclusions and Exceptions) (Scotland) Order 2003 as amended. If this Act is applicable to the job advertised a statement to that effect will be included in the advertisement and recruitment information.
Candidates will be expected to adhere to both legislation and the Trust procedures concerning the declaration of convictions.
19. Candidate Feedback
All candidates, successful or otherwise, may request constructive and objective feedback with regard to their application.
20. Monitoring the Policy
To ensure compliance with the requirements of this Policy, the Human Resources Director will systematically and periodically review the recruitment process to inform the Trust’s Performance Management framework.