Choosing wisely and conducting an effective interview and selection process will help you to select the most suitable person for the role.
Here we have detailed some key points to include in your interview and induction process to aid your safer recruitment and selection procedures.
Interview the applicant
- ensure you have at least 2 people interview or meet with the applicant
- check out any gaps in the application form, including any gaps in employment history
- ensure the applicant has the ability and commitment to meet the standards required to adhere to the safeguarding policy
- you may want to explore the applicant’s attitude to power, authority and discipline, and ask for a response to a problem faced in your club or organisation. This will assess their commitment to promoting good practice and their ability to communicate with children and young people
Verify identity, qualifications and experience
Take relevant steps to confirm the candidate’s identity. Request to see original copies of their ID, qualifications, experience and right to work in the UK.
It's important to obtain at least 2 written references, including the applicants last employer. Referees should include someone who can comment on the applicant’s previous work with children. Ideally, references should be sought on all shortlisted candidates and obtained before an interview takes place.
It is best practice to directly contact the references via telephone to confirm they gave the reference, it is an accurate reflection of the candidate and give them the opportunity to raise any concerns.
It's important to consider the following:
- clarify whose responsibility this task is (local or club level or at national governing body or organisational level)
- take care to ensure that information from all sources is provided to those with responsibility for making a decision on the individual’s suitability for the role
For further information see our template reference form for positions working with children.
Record recruitment decisions
Check thoroughly that the applicant has undergone the relevant pre-employment checks and risk assessment. References, ID, right to work, vetting check and self-disclosure should be recorded alongside the interview outcome and stored securely.
For further information, take a look at the NSPCC child protection records retention and storage guidelines.
Criminal records checks
Organisations should have clear guidelines to establish which roles are eligible for criminal records checks, and ensure that applicants for eligible posts comply. Information about previous criminal convictions or other concerns should be risk assessed.
The Disclosure and Barring Service provide criminal records checks for England and Wales. In Northern Ireland and Scotland these functions are provided by AccessNI and Disclosure Scotland respectively.
For further information about the criminal records check process, types of checks, eligibility and assessing and referring information please visit the relevant organisations' website.
It’s advisable to provide space within the application to allow the person applying for the role to self-declare any relevant convictions or information, and give their consent for a criminal record check to be undertaken.
For further information about eligibility visit the links above to DBS, AccessNI or Disclosure Scothland.
Risk assess information
If any concerning information arising during the recruitment process, a risk assessment should be undertaken by an appropriately experienced and trained individual, this could be the person with lead safeguarding responsibility within the organisation.
For further information, take a look at the RFL interview and risk assessment checklist.
Establishing a case management group, or similar system, within your organisation can help to risk assess information returned from vetting checks and written references. It's important to not employ or deploy an individual until a risk assessment process is complete.
For help with the decision making process visit the Direct Gov website for Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) filtering guidance and see NACRO's Practical guidance on DBS filtering.
For further information, see our case management model tool. This tool provides guidance, templates and good practice examples which will help your organisation manage safeguarding cases more effectively.
Many sport national governing bodies, active partnerships and Local authorities have guidance and can provide support to help your club or activity to risk assess criminal records checks, as well as assisting with the vetting process.