Recruitment and selection application form guidance notes

Thank you for the interest you have shown in working for the council. These notes are provided to help you complete your application form. If you require any additional help please do not hesitate to contact the HR admin team on 01282 878897.

Methods of applying for a job with the council

You can apply for a job by completing an online application form at www.burnley.gov.uk or you can download an application form and return it to vacancies@burnley.gov.uk or complete the form
and post it to:

HR Admin, 1 Market Street NELSON BB9 7LJ

or hand it in addressed to HR Admin at Burnley Town Hall, Manchester Road, BURNLEY BB11 9SA

Your envelope should be marked ‘Private and Confidential.’

CVs will not be accepted nor will applications received after the closing date.

Help with completing the application form

We appreciate the time and effort involved in applying for jobs and we want to try and help you as much as we can. Please consider the following guidance before completing and submitting your application form.

When you apply for a job with the council, selection for interview is based on the information that you provide on the application form. You will have received:

A job description (JD), – which gives you details about the job. It lists all the main duties and responsibilities that you will be required to carry out.

A person specification (PS) – which tells you about the qualifications, skills, knowledge and experience you must have to do the job. These are listed as essential or desirable criteria. To be invited to attend for interview you must be able show that you meet all the essential and ideally all the desirable criteria. You may still be invited for interview if you do not meet all of the desirable criteria.

The JD/PS informs you of our TEAM values (Together, Enterprising, Ambitious and Meeting Customer Needs) also detailed in our agreed Behaviour Framework.

Try and make sure that your application stands out by providing a fully completed, informative and interesting form.

Do make sure that

  • all information that you provide is honest and accurate
  • all relevant parts of the application are completed clearly and concisely
  • all information is relevant to the job as detailed in the job description
  • your application meets the requirements of the person specification
  • you provide evidence of how your previous experience, skills and knowledge meet the essential or desirable criteria for the job. You can use examples from different areas of your life and not just employment
  • you provide a full and continuous history of your education or training and work or unemployment;
  • you check for any spelling or grammatical errors. Do not rely on the computer spell check
  • any attachments are relevant and add value to your application and do not duplicate information already provided
  • you structure your application around the criteria needed for the job. This will make your application more relevant and easier to assess

Do not

  • merely confirm that you meet the criteria in the person specification. You need to provide evidence of how you meet the criteria by giving examples from work, education or other interests
  • cut and paste information from other applications;
  • exaggerate your achievements or abilities

The application form

Personal details – make sure that your full name, preferred title, address, home, work and mobile telephone numbers are legible. Include your email address if you have one.

Equality Monitoring – completing this part of the form helps us to find out if our Equality Policy is effective when we are recruiting. An extract from our policy can be found at appendix 2.

Every job applicant’s suitability for the job will be judged on the basis of their skills, knowledge, experience and qualifications.

Qualifications – list here all the relevant academic qualifications you have achieved. You will need to list your membership body, type of membership and the title of the qualification if the vacancy requires a professional qualification as essential criteria.

You will be required to bring your original certificates or other documentary evidence of qualifications to the interview if you are invited. We will require copies to keep on file.

Present or most recent job – give details of your present job if you are currently employed or your most recent job if you are not presently working.

References – you must give the name, address, job title and email address if possible of referees who can comment on
the last three years of your employment history or full time education. One of your referees must be your current employer or most recent employer if you are unemployed.

If you have never had a job, you must give the name of a teacher or lecturer who knows you well enough to be able to comment on your ability to do the job.

If you have recently entered the country or the company that you worked for has closed down, a reference from your doctor, solicitor or former teacher may be acceptable.

References from relatives or partners are not acceptable. The council does not accept references prepared by current elected members.

If you are an internal candidate you should provide the name and contact details of your Head of Service.

Special training – give details here of any other training that you have had that may be relevant to the post that you are applying for.

Past work – starting with your most recent employer, give your job title, employer and the dates that you have worked for them.

Additional information – This is the most important part of your application. The information that you supply in this section may determine whether you are invited to attend for interview. The decision about inviting you to take part in the next stage
of the selection process will be made by the recruitment panel based to a significant degree on the evidence you provide in this section.

Try and match your relevant skills, knowledge and experience to the essential and desirable requirements in the person specification. It is not acceptable just to say that you have done something. You must qualify this by giving details of how you did it and what was involved.

Additional information

Relatives of Council employees or serving Councillors

You must declare in section 2 of the application form any relationship with a current employee of the Council or with any of its elected members. You must not use any such relationship to support any appointment with the Council. If you are in any doubt as to whether a relationship should be declared it is best to declare it.

If you have a disability

The council welcomes applications from people with disabilities. Applicants with disabilities who meet the essential criteria for the job are guaranteed an interview under the Interview Guarantee Scheme. Complete section 14 of the application form if you wish to be included in this scheme. You can also use this section if you would require any reasonable adjustments to be made at the interview stage.

If your disability requires you to have the job information in a different format please contact us on 01282 878897 or at vacancies@burnley.gov.uk.

Eligibility to work

We are legally obliged to confirm for all employment that you are eligible to work in the United Kingdom before you start working for us. When you apply for a job with the council it is important that you are aware of and understand your eligibility status. Government restrictions apply to the employment of migrant workers. All successful applicants will have to provide documentary evidence before they start work that they are legally entitled to do so. Further details are in appendix 1.

Criminal records

Please see appendix 3 for information about the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Some of the jobs that we advertise are subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service check. This will be clearly stated in the vacancy specification if applicable.

Acknowledgements

All online applicants will receive an acknowledgement confirming receipt.

No acknowledgements will be sent for postal applications or those handed in personally unless specifically requested. You should include a stamped addressed envelope with your request.

Interview

Details of when the interviews will be held are normally included in the vacancy advert. You can assume that you have not been selected to attend for interview if you have not received an invitation within 21 days of the closing date.

Feedback

We welcome your feedback to help us with the development
of our recruitment and selection process. Please send any comments or suggestions to vacancies@burnley.gov.uk or write to the address on page 2.

Complaints procedure

The council aims to treat all applicants fairly at every stage
of the recruitment process. We have a duty to ensure that everyone is treated in a non-discriminatory way. We monitor the recruitment and selection process.

We hope that you feel that you have been treated fairly even if you do not get the job. Please contact the service unit concerned if you wish to discuss why you have not been successful and they will give you some feedback.

Any applicant who considers that they have been treated unfairly at any stage of the recruitment and selection process can submit a complaint in writing for the attention of the Head of People and Development, either at vacancies@burnley.gov.uk or posted to Burnley Town Hall, Manchester Road,
Burnley BB11 9SA.

All applicants will be treated sensitively and with courtesy at every stage of the recruitment and selection process. They will not be subject to any unfair discrimination at any time.

Appendix 1

Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 Amendment to Document Checks 16 May 2014

Document Checks

List A – Documents which show an ongoing right to work. Any of the documents, or combination of documents, described in List A below show that the holder has an ongoing right to work in the UK:

  • A passport showing the holder, or a person named in the passport as the child of the holder, is a British citizen or a citizen of the UK and Colonies having the right of abode in the UK
  • A passport or national identity card showing the holder, or a person named in the passport as the child of the holder, is a national of a European Economic Area country or Switzerland (N.B. Special controls on access to the UK labour market apply to Croatian nationals)
  • A Registration Certificate or Document Certifying Permanent Residence issued by the Home Office to a national of a European Economic Area country or Switzerland
  • A Permanent Residence Card issued by the Home Office to the family member of a national of a European Economic Area country or Switzerland
  • A current Biometric Immigration Document (Biometric Residence Permit) issued by the Home Office to the holder indicating that the person named is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK
  • A current passport endorsed to show that the holder
    is exempt from immigration control, is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, has the right of abode in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK
  • A current Immigration Status Document issued by
    the Home Office to the holder with an endorsement indicating that the named person is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK or has no time limit on their stay
    in the UK, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a Government agency or a previous employer
  • A full birth or adoption certificate issued in the UK which includes the name(s) of a least one of the holder’s parents or adoptive parents, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a Government agency or a previous employer
  • A birth or adoption certificate issued in the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or Ireland, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a Government agency or a previous employer
  • A certificate of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a Government agency or a previous employer

List B – Group 1 – Documents where a time-limited statutory excuse lasts until the expiry date of leave
Any of the documents or combination of documents in List B (Group 1) below show that a person is allowed to work in the UK for a limited period of time. Repeat checks are necessary when the document expires.

  • A current passport endorsed to show that the holder is allowed to stay in the UK and is currently allowed to do the type of work in question
  • A current Biometric Immigration Document (Biometric Residence Permit) issued by the Home Office to the holder which indicates that the named person can currently stay in the UK and is allowed to do the work in question
  • A current Residence Card (including an Accession Residence Card or a Derivative Residence Card) issued by the Home Office to a non-European Economic Area national who is a family member of a national of a European Economic Area country or Switzerland or who has a derivative right of residence
  • A current Immigration Status Document containing a photograph issued by the Home Office to the holder with a valid endorsement indicating that the named person may stay in the UK, and is allowed to do the type of work in question, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a Government agency or a previous employer

List B – Group 2 – Documents where a time limited statutory excuse lasts for 6 months

  • A Certificate of Application which is less than 6 months old issued by the Home Office to or for a family member of a national of a EEA country of Switzerland stating
    that the holder is allowed to take employment together with a positive verification letter from the Home Office’s Employer Checking Service
  • An Application Registration Card issued by the Home Office stating that the holder is permitted to take the employment in question, together with a Positive Verification Notice from the Home Office Employer Checking Service
  • A Positive Verification Notice issued by the Home Office Employer Checking Service to the employer or prospective employer, which indicates that the named person may stay in the UK and is permitted to do the work in question.

All documents confirming the applicant’s right to work in the UK must be original. Copies cannot be accepted.

Notes:

  1. The requirement for a properly documented National Insurance number will only provide acceptable evidence of the right to work in the
    UK when given in combination with one of the acceptable documents as specified in lists A and B. The Council will not accept a National Insurance number on its own in any format
  2. Where the permission to work in the UK is time limited the Council must ensure that repeat checks are made as this expires
  3. The Council may not accept an expired passport unless it is a UK passport or a passport issued by
    a member state of the European Economic Area. Expired passports issued by any other country are not acceptable, even if they purport to contain older immigration stamps conferring indefinite leave to enter or remain. If the Council has to rely solely on an expired passport or travel document to show that a person has the right to remain and work in the UK, then it is required to take particular care when examining photographs and comparing these with the current appearance of the person presenting them. The Council is also required to note the date of birth on the expired document and satisfy itself that this is consistent with the current appearance of the holder
  4. A list of the countries included in the European Economic Area can be found at https://www.gov. uk/eu-eea
  5. The Council will take a copy of the original document(s) and note the date that the check was made. This will then be placed on the successful candidate’s personal file.
  6. Further advice can be obtained from People & DevelopmentortheHRAdminTeam. Guidanceon ensuring that documents are valid can be found at gov.uk

APPENDIX 2

The Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 replaces previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act and covers nine equality strands known as Protected Characteristics. The Council aims to ensure that no one receives less favourable treatment for reasons relating to all recognised protected characteristics covered by the Equality Act 2010 which are:

  • Age Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Marriage and civil partnership (in respect of eliminating unlawful discrimination)
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race – this includes ethnic or national origins, colour or nationality
  • Religion or belief – this includes lack of belief Sex (Gender)
  • Sexual orientation

The Equality Act 2010 states that everyone has the right to be treated fairly and equally. It brings together and simplifies all of the previous existing discrimination law, and strengthens the law to further support progress on equality.

The Act provides a cross-cutting legislative framework to protect the rights of individuals and advance equality of opportunity for all. It has two main purposes; to update, simplify and strengthen the previous legislation; and to deliver a simple, modern and accessible framework of discrimination law which protects individuals from unfair treatment and promotes a fair and more equal workforce.

One of the key measures in the Act is the Public Sector Equality Duty which aims to ensure all public bodies play their part in making society fairer by tackling discrimination and providing equality of opportunity for all. This includes having due regard to:

  • eliminating unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Act;
  • advancing equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it;
  • fostering good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.

Burnley Council is fully committed to working in line with this Duty (Equality Act 2010 Section 149).

Equality in our employment practices

The Council will:

  • strive to ensure that its workforce reflects the diversity of the communities it serves;
  • ensure its employment policies, procedures and practices are applied fairly and consistently;
  • ensure employees and Councillors treat one another with dignity and respect;
  • take appropriate and immediate action to challenge and address any inappropriate or unacceptable use of language, behaviour or discrimination;
  • ensure that all managers include discussion about
    the Council’s values in employee Performance and Development Reviews (TEAM values are: Together, Enterprising, Ambitious and Meeting customer Needs)

Appendix 3

Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

This Act allows an offender to be rehabilitated when his or her conviction becomes spent after the following periods of time.

Aged 17 or over on conviction
Aged under 17 on conviction
Prison (immediate or suspended sentence) or young offender institution for more than 6 months but less than 2.5 years10 years5 years
Prison (immediate or suspended sentence) or young offender institution for 6 months or less7 years3.5 years
Fine or Community Service Order5 years2.5 years
Absolute discharge6 months6 months
Probation, Supervision, Care Order, bind-over or conditional discharge1 year or until Order expires whichever is the longer1 year or until Order expires whichever is the longer
Attendance Centre Order1 year after the Order expires1 year after the Order expires
Hospital Order with or without a Restriction Order5 years or 2 years after the Order expires whichever is longer5 years or 2 years after the Order expires whichever is longer

If you have been sentenced for any offence and the above periods of time have not passed, you must declare the offence. If the period of time has passed, you do not need to mention it on your application form.