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Recruitment and selection procedure

Version number 1.0 | Version effective 24 January 2022
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Recruitment and selection procedure

Audience

All departmental employees and candidates applying for employment within the Department of Education.

Purpose

This procedure outlines the responsibilities and processes for the consistent application of recruitment and selection standards and directives across the Department of Education.

The recruitment and selection of public service employees must be in accordance with the merit principles and criteria prescribed in sections 27 and 28 of the Public Service Act 2008 (PS Act).

The principles of merit and merit criteria apply to all permanent, temporary and casual recruitment and selection decisions.

Overview

The department is committed to the principles of merit and criteria as defined in the Public Service Act 2008 and Queensland Government’s Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20). This procedure aligns to the requirements of the Public Service Act 2008 and Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20).

The department acknowledges the Queensland Government’s commitment to maximising permanent employment where possible, and recruitment and selection should be undertaken in the context of determining the appropriate workforce mix for current and future needs.

All employees involved in recruitment and selection decisions have an obligation to put the public interest first by selecting the most meritorious candidate for appointment in a fair and unbiased way. Selection processes must be free of discrimination, conflict of interest and bias, and must consider inclusion and diversity at each stage of the process. Recruitment and selection decisions must not be influenced by self-interest, private affiliations or the likelihood of personal gain or loss.

This procedure does not apply to the recruitment and selection of the chief executive officer, external contractors, or volunteers.

A vacancy can be filled through a variety of ways, including the transfer of an existing employee. Recruitment and selection is the last approach to managing a vacancy, and is only used after all other vacancy management approaches are considered. See the Recruitment and Selection Resource (DoE employees only) for further information.

Where a vacancy is exempt from advertising in accordance with the Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20), the principles of merit continue to apply.

Responsibilities

Candidate

  • understand the role they are applying for to ensure they have VISA work rights for Australia (if applicable) and for Queensland public service employment
  • provide an honest account of qualifications, skills, capabilities, and any mandatory requirements of the role (including mandatory registrations and authority for working with children)
  • seek feedback as desired
  • maintain confidentiality of selection processes.

Panel Chair (hiring manager)

  • undertake recruitment and selection resource training (training via The Learning Place (DoE employees only) must have been completed within the preceding year for executive and equivalent recruitment)
  • understand and apply the principles of merit and the Department of Education’s standards of practice to all recruitment and selection processes
  • ensure an approved role description is available
  • develop a recruitment strategy and, with the panel members, choose appropriate selection tools
  • manage the request to hire and approval processes
  • form and manage appropriate panels commensurate with the role and the position, including the consideration of inclusion and diversity
  • declare actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest, actively participate in strategies to resolve the conflict, including removing themselves or members of the panel to manage the conflict before entering into the selection process
  • declare the absence of actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest for themselves and the panel members before entering into the selection process
  • ensure all candidates are treated consistently, ethically and fairly
  • provide factual and professional advice to panel members relating to all recruitment and selection matters
  • is not pressured or influenced by other panel members, the delegate or an external party in determining the selection outcome
  • prepare the selection report and provide all relevant documentation to the decision maker (HR delegate), including Minority Reports
  • provide quality feedback to candidates as requested
  • maintain records relating to the recruitment and selection of employees in accordance with the Whole of Government General Retention and Disposal Schedule (GRDS)
  • maintain strict confidentiality at all times.

Panel Members (including independent panel members)

  • understand and apply the principles of merit and the department's standards of practice to all recruitment and selection processes
  • declare actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest and actively participate in strategies to resolve the conflict of interest  in the public interest
  • declare the absence of actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest
  • independently assesses candidates for positions
  • contribute to the development of the recruitment strategy and selection tools, as required
  • ensure all candidates are treated consistently, ethically and fairly
  • provide factual and professional advice relating to all recruitment and selection matters
  • is not pressured or influenced by other panel members, the delegate or an external party in determining the selection outcome
  • assist with final recommendation for the selection report, and, if required, submit a Minority Report
  • provide feedback to candidates as requested
  • maintain strict confidentiality at all times.

Decision maker (HR Delegate)

  • must not be a member of the selection panel
  • understand and apply the principles of merit and the Department of Education’s standards of practice to all recruitment and selection processes
  • must declare actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest OR the absence of a conflict of interest with the panel and candidates
  • review all documentation to decide on the outcome of the selection process
  • must be satisfied the proposed appointee is the most meritorious and, where applicable the selection process complies with the Public Service Act 2008 and the Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20)
  • is not pressured or influenced by others or an external party in determining the appointment outcome
  • must act and make decisions in a way that is compatible with human rights and the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld).
  • for more information refer to the HR Delegations (DoE employees only).

HR Branch

  • provide timely advice on role descriptions, establishment management, vacancy management, and recruitment strategies
  • ensure policies and procedures comply with directives relating to employment and recruitment and selection
  • advertise positions according to the Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20) and provide authoritative advice regarding recruitment and selection processes
  • conduct required pre-employment checks and process appointments as required
  • conduct quality assurance checks on executive and equivalent selection processes and selection documentation.

Process

Process diagram flowchart to show the steps in recruitment and selection of staff

Image 1 Flowchart process for recruitment and selection

Refer to the Recruitment and Selection Resource (DoE employees only) for additional information and guidance on the recruitment and selection process.

1. Identify a vacancy to be filled through a recruitment and selection process

The panel chair (hiring manager) must:

The panel chair may seek assistance from the HR Branch in relation to filling vacancies outside a recruitment and selection process.

Where the vacancy is an entry level role or where the role is exempt from advertising under the Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20) the hiring manager may elect not to advertise the role. For these roles, the principles of merit and the responsibilities of the panel chair, panel members and decision maker must still be applied. An exemption from advertising is not an exemption from ethical decision making. The hiring manager must:

  • Conduct a recruitment and selection process in accordance with the merit principle and criteria prescribed in the PS Act
  • Not have a conflict of interest with the recommended candidate
  • Seek the approval of the decision maker (HR delegate) to appoint the recommended candidate.

2. Identify recruitment strategy

A recruitment strategy is based on planning, attracting, selecting, and hiring. Refer to the department’s Recruitment and Selection Resource (DoE employees only) for more information.

The panel chair (hiring manager) must:

  • Form a selection panel, ensuring the composition and size of the panel is commensurate with the role. Inclusion and diversity must be considered when selecting panel members
  • For executive recruitment, have completed the modules of the Recruitment and Selection Resource (DoE employees only) on The Learning Place (DoE employees only) within the last year
  • Ensure all panel members understand their responsibilities and apply the principles of merit, including if a role does not require advertising
  • Identify an appropriate recruitment strategy (including the use of talent pools and recurring vacancy processes). Refer to the Recruitment and Selection Resource (DoE employees only) for further information
  • When advertising the vacancy, complete a request to hire form to advertise internally and/or externally for approval of the decision maker (HR delegate), including:
    • Advertisement wording
    • Working with children authority (Blue card/exemption card confirmation)
    • Approved role description
    • Position number, where applicable
    • Advertising cost centre/internal order number
    • Reason for the vacancy
    • Instructions for candidates regarding the application process
    • Supporting documentation, including the application questionnaire (if applicable).

3. Undertake a selection process

The selection process will evaluate candidates against the key capabilities of the role. All selection processes must follow the principles of merit when determining the most suitable candidate for a position.

Candidates must be truthful and provide honest accounts of their qualifications, experience, skills, and capabilities. Candidates should not overstate or overinflate their application to seek selection.

The panel chair must ensure the selection panel:

  • Declares an absence of a conflict of interest OR declares an actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest. The panel chair must manage actual, perceived and potential conflicts of interest in the public interest
  • Conducts a selection process:
    • The selection panel should use selection techniques relevant to the role which enable the panel to assess the overall merit of applicants, and avoid limiting its assessment to one component of merit or one aspect of the process.
      • The department is committed to ensuring that people with disabilities are able to compete for recruitment and promotion. Reasonable adjustment is a key strategy in achieving this outcome. It is an approach to employment where employers examine the physical and organisational barriers which may prevent the employment, limit the performance or curtail the advancement of people with disabilities.
  • Validates the selection through reference checks and the department's referee report template (DoE employees only). At a minimum, reference checking must be conducted in relation to the applicant recommended for appointment.
    • Reference checking for other applicants is at the discretion of the panel.
    • The panel decides when to conduct reference checks during the selection process. For non-public service applicants, the panel should consider the possible impacts of seeking references at an early stage.
  • Assessing the relative merit of applicants based on the information available to them. In some instances, this may include adverse information, as a result of a pre-employment check or through panel members’ pre-existing knowledge of an applicant.
    • Where adverse information is taken into account by the panel and it adversely affects the proposed selection outcome, the information must be put to the applicant for response. Any response from the applicant must be documented and considered by the panel ahead of making their final recommendation to the decision maker.
  • Provides the decision maker (HR delegate) with documentation to decide on the selection recommendation (both advertised roles and roles that are entry level and exempt from advertising).

4. Conduct pre-employment checks

Pre-employment checks must be carried out prior to an appointment to a position.

Internal checks may be conducted on internal employees. 

Where required in the role description, pre-employment checks and internal checks must be completed before a selection report is submitted to the decision maker (HR delegate).

The panel chair (hiring manager) must:

  • Obtain the consent of the preferred candidate to undertake pre-employment checks
  • Ensure the preferred candidate is aware that no appointment decision has been made until the pre-employment process is completed
  • Confirm:
    • Reference checks (including seeking the referee’s knowledge about past performance assessments and past serious disciplinary action must be conducted)
    • Working with children authority (Blue Cards) or working with children clearance (Exemption Cards)
    • Mandatory qualifications
    • Mandatory registrations
    • Citizenship and visa 
  • Request your respective HR Branch to conduct an internal check or serious disciplinary check (where determined) on any internal employees recommended for appointment.

5. Make recommendation for appointment

When the selection tools and pre-employment checks have been completed, the panel completes its selection recommendation on the template for consideration by the decision maker (HR delegate).

When the selection tools and pre-employment checks have been completed, the selection panel must:

  • determine the most meritorious candidate(s) taking into consideration all information learned about the candidates during the recruitment and selection process
  • complete their selection recommendation on the selection report (DoE employees only) for consideration by the decision maker (HR delegate).

Where a panel member disagrees with the selection outcome, a Minority Report can be submitted with the selection report for the decision maker (HR delegate).

The panel chair must provide the decision maker (HR delegate) with the following documentation required to decide on the outcome of the selection process:

  • Selection report
  • Minority report (if submitted)
  • Shortlisting notes
  • Panel declarations
  • Reference checks
  • Executive checklist (applicable to SES profile, s122 fixed-term contracts and principals’ level 8, 9 and 10 selection processes only)
  • Public Service Commission (PSC) Senior Executive nomination form (SES profile only).

The decision maker (HR delegate) must:

  • understand their responsibilities as decision maker and be free of all conflicts of interest
  • declare an absence of a conflict of interest OR declares an actual, perceived and potential conflict of interest
  • if no conflict of interest exists, review the selection documentation and be satisfied the proposed appointee is the most meritorious and, where applicable the selection process complies with the Public Service Act 2008 and the Recruitment and Selection Directive (12/20)
  • not be pressured or influenced by an external party in determining the appointment.

6. Appointment and gazetting an appointment from a recruitment and selection process

Once the selection report is approved by the decision maker (HR delegate or, in the case of SES profile roles, the Commission Chief Executive of the Public Service Commission), a member of the panel can:

  • Make an offer of appointment to the successful candidate; however, where a blue card or exemption card is required for the role, a current blue card or exemption card must be verified and validated before an offer of employment can be made,
  • Where applicable instigate a criminal history check (as per the Criminal history check procedure) of the approved candidate for appointment, and,
  • Negotiate a commencement date.

Commencement salary:

  • The commencing salary will usually be the first pay point of the classification level. However, the successful applicant may be appointed to any pay point within a classification level based on recognition of skills, knowledge and abilities (excluding employees covered by the Teaching in State Education Award - State 2016, SO and SES roles).
  • For Senior Officer roles, the chief executive will determine the relevant Senior Officer pay point to be paid commensurate with the person's skills and expertise, as outlined in the Senior officers - employment conditions Directive (02/21).
  • For SES profile roles, the chief executive will determine the package point within the work value range for the role that the SES officer will receive, as outlined in the Senior Executive Service - Employment Conditions Directive (03/21). Unless exceptional circumstances apply, the SES officer will receive remuneration at the minimum package point on initial appointment. Exceptional circumstances will require support of the Commission Chief Executive (of the Public Service Commission) for remuneration above the minimum package point.
  • Where the successful candidate is a Queensland Government employee, reappointed within 12 months of cessation of employment, they may have their previous service counted for the purpose of pay point (recognition of service will be considered in accordance with the Recognition of Previous Service Directive (12/18)). 
  • Where the successful candidate is a permanent Queensland Government employee and is being appointed to temporarily relieve in a higher level position, the commencing salary will be the first pay point of the 'higher classification level', as outlined in the Higher Duties Directive (04/20).

For advertised positions, the hiring manager must advise HR Branch of the outcome:

The Recruitment Services Unit and Talent Unit (HR Branch), in consultation with the hiring manager, must gazette the following appointments within one month of the appointment decision:

  • all senior executive and senior officer appointments from an advertised vacancy
  • promotions of tenured public service officers from an advertised vacancy
  • promotions of tenured public service officers arising from the use of the recurring vacancy provision.

The hiring manager must:

For further information about the appointment process, including letters of appointment, contact HR Branch.

7. Appeals

At the end of every recruitment and selection process all candidates (regardless of whether they were successful or not) have the right to request feedback. Feedback must be timely, specific and constructive from a member of the selection panel sufficient to explain the panel’s recommendation and the decision maker’s decision.

A person cannot appeal against a fair treatment decision relating to the recruitment or selection of a public service employee.

A public service employee may appeal certain decisions that affect their employment. However, as per the Appeals directive (07/20) an appeal may be lodged by a public service officer or tenured general employee aggrieved by the decision (an aggrieved officer), provided the following conditions are met:

  • the decision relates to the gazetted promotion of a public service officer or tenured general employee
  • the aggrieved officer’s application to the role being appealed was received on or before the deadline for the receipt of applications or in the case of continuous applicant pools, the application was received prior to the date of distribution to the selection panel for the relevant promotion
  • the aggrieved officer has sought post-selection feedback in accordance with the provisions of the directive relating to recruitment and selection, and
  • for an appeal against a promotion from a limited advertising process conducted in accordance with the directive relating to recruitment and selection, the aggrieved officer was covered by the invitation to apply.

Members of the public can make a complaint about a recruitment and selection outcome via the department’s Customer complaints management framework.

Definitions

Term

Definition

Appoint

To employ a public service officer, general employee or fixed term temporary employee covered by the Recruitment and Selection Directive 07/20.

Approved role description

An approved role description has been through the Job Evaluation Management System process.

Positions to be advertised require role descriptions. A role description provides the opportunity to understand the position to be filled. To successfully embark on a recruitment and selection process and to advertise a position an approved role description is required. The hiring manager is able to source a diverse range of teaching and non-teaching role descriptions on the department’s website. If the role is specialised, or the current role description requires updating, the hiring manager may seek the assistance of the JEMS team.

Conflict of interest

Chief executives, senior executives (and equivalents), and public service employees have an obligation to disclose any interest that conflicts or may conflict with the performance of official duties (Sections 102 and 186 of the Public Service Act 2008).

A conflict of interest occurs when private interests interfere, or appear to interfere with the performance of official duties.

Private interests include personal, professional or business interests, as well as the interests of individuals that you associate with, such as family, dependants and friends.

An actual conflict of interest involves a direct conflict between a public service employee's current duties and responsibilities and existing private interests.

A perceived conflict of interest can exist where it could be perceived, or it appears, that a public official's private interests could improperly influence the performance of their duties – whether or not this is in fact the case.

A potential conflict of interest arises when a public service employee has a private interest that could conflict with their official duties in the future.

Minority report

Where the panel is unable to reach a selection recommendation after adequate deliberation and discussion, a minority report is to be submitted. The minority report is to be prepared by the relevant panel member and used to clearly outline the reasons for not supporting the recommendation of the selection panel.

Entry level

Entry level roles, in relation to the Queensland Public Service Officers and Other Employees Award – State 2015 are those roles at classification levels 1 and 2 of the administrative, technical, professional and operational streams. A role at classification level 3 of the operational stream may also be considered entry level where the role does not represent a career path for staff of the agency and the role has no supervisory responsibility.

Entry level roles are the lowermost classification level of a specific stream or classification structure, provided that the base superannuable salary of that classification level (not including loading or allowances) does not exceed the equivalent of AO5(4).

Executive recruitment

Executive recruitment includes SES profiled positions, s122 fixed-term contracts and principals’ level 8, 9 and 10.

Factual and professional advice

Factual and professional advice upholds the values and responsibilities of the public service during any recruitment and selection process.

It is information needed to assist in making a recommendation of a selection outcome.

Identified roles

Is a role or a position in relation to which it is lawful to discriminate in favour of a person possessing one of the attributes set out in section 7 of the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 for the purpose contained in section 25 of that Act.

Independent panel member

Someone who has no vested interest in the recruitment outcome and must not be from the same Ministerial portfolio.

Internal checks

Internal checks are integrity checks undertaken on departmental employees by central office and includes reporting on any substantiated conduct breach or active conduct matter that may delay an appointment, exclude an appointee or render a person ineligible for appointment. 

Mandatory conditions

Are inherent requirements of the role and can include certain classes of drivers’ license, statutory restrictions, any requirement for the appointee to undertake regular travel etc.

Mandatory qualifications

Mandatory qualifications are qualifications essential for the occupant of a role to hold in order to comply with an industrial instrument or to satisfy legal, accreditation or registration requirements or where a chief executive determination has been made.

Merit criteria

The extent to which the person has abilities, aptitude, skills, qualifications, knowledge, experience and personal qualities relevant to the carrying out of the duties in question, and if relevant:

  • the way in which the person carried out any previous employment or occupational duties
  • the extent to which the person has potential for development.

Merit principle

The selection of an eligible person for an appointment or secondment as a public service employee must be based on merit alone (the merit principle)

Queensland Government Gazette

Is an online publication containing legal notices, such as legislative changes, and appointments to permanent government positions.

Recurring vacancy

Are those vacancies that are identical to the original vacancy in terms of title, remuneration, classification level and role description, provided the appointment is made within 12 months of the closing date of the original vacancy.

A recurring vacancy also means a similar vacancy provided that the classification level, remuneration and key capabilities are the same as the original vacancy and the role requirements are similar and the advertisement included a note that applications may be used to appoint to similar vacancies for a specified period up to 12 months after the closing date of the initial vacancy.

Selection panel

Are the persons responsible for conducting the assessment of applicants and making a recommendation about appointment to the decision maker. For SES vacancies, the panel must include one member from outside the Ministerial portfolio and is identified as the Independent Panel Member.

Serious disciplinary check

Serious disciplinary action is defined under the Public Service Act as

disciplinary action under a public sector disciplinary law involving -

  • termination of employment; or
  • reduction of classification level or rank; or
  • transfer or redeployment to other employment; or
  • reduction of remuneration level

Or

A disciplinary declaration under a public sector disciplinary law that states a disciplinary action mentioned in paragraph (a)(i) or (ii) as the disciplinary action that would have been taken against the person if the person’s employment had not ended.

Talent pool

An expression used to describe a database with current and potential future job candidates received by the department that can be used for short-term recruitment and selection processes.

Legislation

Delegations/Authorisations

Other resources

Superseded versions

Previous seven years shown. Minor version updates not included.

Nil

Review date

24 January 2025
Attribution CC BY
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