Follow us on Twitter

Recruitment process of new clerk/RFO

0 votes
Good evening

Has anybody recruited a new clerk recently?  We have had a meeting and it was agreed all the chair would be sent the applications  forms via email from the applicants.   I will also send out the recruitment pack too.  Mainly, because our clerk is very busy with year end.  This was agreed  at our meeting.  The clerk now is questioning that the completed applications should be sent to her and held till closing date, so no predeterminations are made.  I have assured her that all applications will remain on my computer unopened and will not be discussed with any councillors.
The recruitment process will be discussed at our next meeting, any advice please?

We do not have any policies or procedures in place for recruitment, HR etc
Thanks Ann
asked by (750 points)

5 Answers

0 votes
In an ideal world, you'd have an HR person who manages the process, but is not part of the decision-making function. In the good old days, applications remained sealed in their envelopes, in the same way that contract tenders work (or worked!) Email makes that difficult. So I can see why your Clerk has raised the issue. The shortlisting process will be managed by a group of people, so the fact that one of them may have seen the applications before the others is not a major issue.

I always use a formal evaluation and scoring system, both for shortlisting and interviewing, assessing applicants against the job description and person specification. These papers are kept as part of the official record.
answered by (29.1k points)
0 votes
Being cheeky, any chance you could email some examples what you use?
answered by (750 points)
I've sent you a private message Ann.
0 votes
This shows the problems that can arise if no formal policy is in place. Am a little disturbed that the clerk appears essentially to be questioning the integrity of the chair regarding confidentiality of applications received. Not good for any working relationship.
answered by (7.9k points)
0 votes
absolutely.    I have over 30 years pubic service as a police officer, (now happy retired)  with exemplary record of service.  There are other issues.  Best leave it there    Thanks for your comment
answered by (750 points)
+1 vote

Hi Ann,

The holier than thou role of Clerk strikes again. I have a lot of experience in recruitment and so would suggest the Council do the following.

  1. Advertise with a clear role profile.
  2. Ensure the contract is sound and in the best interests of the PC for the successful candidate
  3. Ensure you have a recruitment policy (Very simple and straight forward) NALC/ACAS has many. This should state how you advertise, shortlist, interview, recruit.
  4. Have a clear set of question relevant to the council AND around character. It's pointless having the perfect person on paper if they have an awful character. 
  5. Ensure you have a training policy - this should include how someone is inducted, what priority training an employee should receive and aspirational training too i.e. CiLCA.
  6. Ensure you have a Staffing Committee with delegated responsibility from the full council in your ToR for line management, recruitment, performance management and disciplinaries. 
  7. You (Line manager) should aim to meet with the employee for a documented but informal 1-2-1 weekly for the first month or longer should you see fit and meet formally (documented) monthly for a 1-2-1/appraisal. Probationary periods should be at least 12 weeks, ideally no longer than 24 weeks. However the law states an employee can be dismissed (technically without reason so long as it is not discrimination) within 2 years minus a day (Although bad practice).
  8. You should have subsidiary policies to support both parties i.e. Grievance procedure, Holiday's policy, sick leave etc etc much of which will be referenced in the contract. 
Hope this helps feel free to message me if I can assist any further. 
answered by (5.3k points)
Thank you for taking the time to assist

Welcome to Town & Parish Councillor Q&A, where you can ask questions and receive answers from other members of the community. All genuine questions and answers are welcome. Follow us on Twitter to see the latest questions as they are asked - click on the image button above or follow @TownCouncilQA. Posts from new members may be delayed as we are unfortunately obliged to check each one for spam. Spammers will be blacklisted.

You may find the following links useful:

We have a privacy policy and a cookie policy.

Google Analytics Alternative