Pre-appointment checking seeks to verify that applicants meet the preconditions of employment. Checks are most effective if they form an integral part of your policies, practices and procedures for the recruitment, hiring, and where necessary, training of employees. The level and degree of checks carried out should be proportionate to the potential risk the post being applied for may pose.
NHS organisations should refer to the NHS Employment Check standards
, which outline the type and level of checks employers must carry out before recruiting staff into NHS positions.
It is strongly recommended that only one department be responsible for carrying out pre-appointment screening to ensure consistency, generally this falls to HR as the lead on the recruitment and selection of employees. A dedicated manager or senior member of staff should be appointed to lead the process to ensure that checks and protocols are adhered to and information is shared appropriately.
Other stages of the recruitment process also give opportunities to screen applicants. Interviews in particular, will help employers to assess the integrity and character of the applicant. Financial checks can also be used to provide assurance that there are no significant credit or debt problems that could place the individual in a vulnerable position.
All pre-appointment practices and processes need to be thorough, objective and unbiased; and must be fully compliant with all relevant employment legislation such as data protection, human rights, equality and diversity.
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Advice for applicants and staff:
Please note that the NHS Employers organisation is unable to provide advice to individuals regarding their appointment in the NHS, or other personal employment issues.
Any queries in the first instance should be directed to the recruiting manager of the organisation concerned, or directed to the HR/personnel department. Where appropriate, additional advice may be sought from your Union representative or independent advice may be sought from the Citizen's Advice Bureau.