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  • Candidate Information


    Northern Ireland Civil Service


    Administrative Officer (AO)


    Completed Application Forms must be returned to HRConnect no later than 12 noon (UK time)

    on Friday 9th August 2013

  • Annex B 15

    Northern Ireland Civil Service

    Creating opportunity, releasing potential, achieving excellence.

    Contents Page Foreword 3 Background 4 Job Description 5 Key Responsibilities 7 Eligibility and Assessment Process 7 Guidance for Applicants 12 General Information 17 Annex A - Nationality 22 Annex B - Civil Service Commissioners 23 Annex C – AccessNI documents 26

    IMPORTANT - Email communication between HRConnect and you Only online applications will be accepted. It is a requirement for this competition that all applicants provide an email address in order to complete the first assessment stage, which will be online. You are responsible for ensuring that the e-mail address you provide is correct and kept up-to-date. If your email address changes throughout the lifetime of this competition please ensure you notify HRConnect as soon as possible. During the competition HRConnect will issue as much correspondence as possible via email. You should therefore check your email account (and junk mail folders) to make sure that you don’t miss any important communications in relation to this competition. On occasion we may also contact you via hardcopy letter. If you need to contact HRConnect by e-mail, please ensure that the competition reference number (IRC184588) is included in the subject line along with the subject of the e-mail. Our e- mail address is: [email protected]

  • 3

    FOREWORD Thank you for your interest in this competition to fill positions at Administrative Officer

    within the Northern Ireland Civil Service. This competition will be used to fill current

    and future vacancies which may arise at this grade in any Northern Ireland

    Department or associated agency.

    The principal functions of the NICS are to provide administrative and policy support

    to the Ministers of the Northern Ireland Executive and to manage and deliver a wide

    range of public services to the people of Northern Ireland. The work of the Northern

    Ireland Civil Service touches on most aspects of life for the citizens of Northern

    Ireland. We wish therefore, to attract applications that are as representative as

    possible of the entire community we serve.

    Please read through the information contained within this booklet and if you feel you

    have the skills and qualifications to fulfil the requirements of the role, I would

    encourage you to submit an application.

    Finally, very best wishes in your application.


  • 4

    BACKGROUND The Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) is one of the largest employers in Northern Ireland, with over 25,000 staff. Administrative Officers are employed in each of the 13 Northern Ireland Departments and deliver a number of key customer-facing services and support functions. The 13 Northern Ireland Departments are:-

    Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM); The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD); The Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL); The Department of Education (DE); The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment (DETI); The Department of Environment (DOE); The Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP); The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS); The Department of Justice (DOJ); The Department for Employment and Learning (DEL); The Department for Regional Development (DRD); The Department for Social Development (DSD). The Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland.

    Further information on the Northern Ireland Departments can be obtained on the NIDirect website at:

  • 5

    JOB DESCRIPTION This competition will be used to fill full-time permanent AO vacancies that arise over the next two years. Currently it is anticipated that most permanent vacancies will be in the Department for Social Development. However, vacancies in other Departments may also arise over the lifetime of this competition. Salary The salary will be within the range £18,946 - £22,291 (effective August 2013) within which pay progression will be determined by performance. Starting salary will be the minimum of the range. Annual Leave In addition to the usual 12 days public and privilege holidays, you will enjoy an annual leave allowance of 25 days rising to 30 days after 5 years satisfactory service. Pension The NICS offers all employees an attractive pension package. Further details of this can be found on page 17 of this booklet. Probationary Period Confirmation of your appointment will be dependent upon the satisfactory completion of a probationary period of 1 year. If your performance, conduct or attendance during this period is not satisfactory your appointment may be terminated. All appointees will be expected to demonstrate a track record of effective service within this period. Work patterns The normal conditioned hours of work are full-time: 42 hours per week (37 hours excluding meal breaks) Monday to Friday. Most offices work flexi-time. Vacancies in most Departments will follow this work pattern. The Department for Social Development is currently reviewing its opening hours to the public. Extended opening hours may include evening and weekend working and Bank Holidays, for example, 8.00am to 8.00pm Monday to Friday and Saturday 9.00am to 5.00pm. Vacancies within the Department for Social Development may require new staff to work on a range of patterns within these extended hours. You will be asked within the application form to indicate whether you are willing to be considered for vacancies that involve work in the evenings and/or Saturdays (‘alternative working patterns’).

  • 6

    Location This competition will be used to fill permanent vacancies that may arise throughout Northern Ireland, however it is expected that the majority of posts will be based in the Greater Belfast Area. On the application form you can select up to 3 areas where you would be prepared to work. Please note that in selecting areas you should ensure that you can and are willing to travel to the location. If successful you will only be offered a post in one of your selected areas and your name will be removed from the list of successful applicants for your other chosen areas.

    Area 1: Belfast (including Stormont), Newtownabbey, Lisburn, Larne and Carrickfergus

    Area 2: Bangor, Newtownards and Ballynahinch Area 3: Downpatrick, Newcastle, Kilkeel and Newry Area 4: Armagh, Portadown, Lurgan and Banbridge Area 5: Fermanagh Area 6: Omagh, Dungannon and Cookstown Area 7: Strabane, Londonderry/Derry and Limavady Area 8: Coleraine, Ballymoney, Antrim, Ballymena and Magherafelt

    Northern Ireland Prison Service vacancies There may be a small number of vacancies within Northern Ireland Prison Service (NIPS). You will be asked in your application form if you wish to be considered for these vacancies.






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    KEY RESPONSIBILITIES As an Administrative Officer you will be expected to deliver effective customer facing services to both the general public and internal customers using modern technology to get the job done. Administrative Officers, particularly those assigned to public offices have to be able to cope with pressures faced in a busy work environment, this will require you to be a good communicator, a good team-player and able to work accurately while managing your time efficiently.


    In order to be eligible for the AO competition, applicants must have, by the closing date for applications:

    • 5 GCSE/GCE O’Levels at Grade C or above which must include English and Mathematics.

    Your eligibility will be assessed against this criterion as part of the competition process. An invitation to attend an assessment event should not be considered as confirmation that you have satisfied this eligibility criteria.

    Relevant or equivalent qualifications: Applications will also be considered from applicants with relevant formal qualifications considered to be of an equivalent or higher standard to those stated. If you are providing an equivalent qualification, please state the type of qualification and date awarded on your application form (the date awarded is the date on which you were notified of your result by the official awarding body). If you believe your qualification is equivalent to the one required, the onus is on you to provide details of modules studied etc so that a well-informed decision can be made. If you are providing a qualification of a higher standard, you must ensure that you state how it meets the English and Mathematics GCSE requirement. Further information on determining the equivalence of relevant formal qualifications can be found at Plea