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Can the ombudsman investigate council interview process?


politico123

Active member
Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
276
Hi,

Quick question as stated above.

Friend of mine went for a job with the local authority. It took the council five months from the application deadline to fill the vacancy. This included two interviews, where they interviewed 120 people in the first round and only took it down to forty for the second. In the first interview he got his results of the interview and under relevant experience he got 22 out of 25.

In the second interview, there were people attending who didn't do the first interview. My friend did not get the job and his relevant experience dropped from 22 to 16. A lot of others who did the interview found the same thing had happened. Surely their relevant experience can't go down?

Now, it transpires that the man who got the job is related to someone who works in the county manager's office. His suitability to the job is tenuous at best, and he also happens to live near a local councillor.

So my question is, can the ombudsman investigate the whole process? The fact that it took five months is surely a disgrace and the cost of interviewing people would have been obscene.
 
Last edited:

Sync

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Joined
Aug 27, 2009
Messages
28,845
In the second interview, there were people attending who didn't do the first interview. My friend did not get the job and his relevant experience dropped from 22 to 16. A lot of others who did the interview found the same thing had happened. Surely their relevant experience can't go down?
The first bit happens all the time. Internal applicants, people with standout CVs often skip the first level interviews (i.e the basic competence checks).

The second bit happens as well. Often when I'm interviewing I'll let others do the first level, then pick up the second myself. My scores may differ from others. Also if the points are being judged on a sliding scale then a small number of applicants could well see your score drop as more experienced applicants remain and lesser ones are moved out of contention.
 

dresden8

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Feb 5, 2009
Messages
14,937
Sh1t happens in Local Authorities and the HSE.

The wider public sector gets the blame.
 

politico123

Active member
Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
276
The first bit happens all the time. Internal applicants, people with standout CVs often skip the first level interviews (i.e the basic competence checks).

The second bit happens as well. Often when I'm interviewing I'll let others do the first level, then pick up the second myself. My scores may differ from others. Also if the points are being judged on a sliding scale then a small number of applicants could well see your score drop as more experienced applicants remain and lesser ones are moved out of contention.
Yeah that's what I thought but when I heard who got it, it really didn't make sense. I'm not saying that my friend should have got the job but his relevant experience is way ahead of this guy's as was a few others I know.
 

Mr. Bumble

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 7, 2010
Messages
18,254
Hi,

Quick question as stated above.

Friend of mine went for a job with the local authority. It took the council five months from the application deadline to fill the vacancy. This included two interviews, where they interviewed 120 people in the first round and only took it down to forty for the second. In the first interview he got his results of the interview and under relevant experience he got 22 out of 25.

In the second interview, there were people attending who didn't do the first interview. My friend did not get the job and his relevant experience dropped from 22 to 16. A lot of others who did the interview found the same thing had happened. Surely their relevant experience can't go down?

Now, it transpires that the man who got the job is related to someone who works in the county secretary's office. His suitability to the job is tenuous at best, and he also happens to live near a local councillor.

So my question is, can the ombudsman investigate the whole process? The fact that it took five months is surely a disgrace and the cost of interviewing people would have been obscene.
Having been an interviewer in the private and public sectors, in my experience, the selection process in the public sector is more stringent and transparent. There would have been an external interviewer and a HR representative both of whom would be there to ensure the process was fair and above board. That's not to say there can't be corruption, but I've never encountered it or heard of it.
 

Analyzer

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
46,201
Hi,

Quick question as stated above.

Friend of mine went for a job with the local authority. It took the council five months from the application deadline to fill the vacancy. This included two interviews, where they interviewed 120 people in the first round and only took it down to forty for the second. In the first interview he got his results of the interview and under relevant experience he got 22 out of 25.

In the second interview, there were people attending who didn't do the first interview. My friend did not get the job and his relevant experience dropped from 22 to 16. A lot of others who did the interview found the same thing had happened. Surely their relevant experience can't go down?

Now, it transpires that the man who got the job is related to someone who works in the county manager's office. His suitability to the job is tenuous at best, and he also happens to live near a local councillor.

So my question is, can the ombudsman investigate the whole process? The fact that it took five months is surely a disgrace and the cost of interviewing people would have been obscene.
I applied for a local authority post in the mid 1990s. It took them 12 months from the time they received the CV, to the first interview.

Nice to know that productivity has improved to such a considerable degree.

[by the way, I know of private sector organizations that approved candidates for a role, and who wasted so much time authorizing the budget, that the candidates had another job by the time they told them that they were hired].
 

politico123

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Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
276
Having been an interviewer in the private and public sectors, in my experience, the selection process in the public sector is more stringent and transparent. There would have been an external interviewer and a HR representative both of whom would be there to ensure the process was fair and above board. That's not to say there can't be corruption, but I've never encountered it or heard of it.
I've a feeling your local authority may be a little more subtle than our own. It's basically a given that corruption will play a part. Not naming the local authority but this is just the tip of the iceberg.
 

dresden8

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Joined
Feb 5, 2009
Messages
14,937
I've a feeling your local authority may be a little more subtle than our own. It's basically a given that corruption will play a part. Not naming the local authority but this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Agreed.
 

cyberianpan

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Jan 18, 2006
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16,630
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160 interviews (plus possible third round) for one position ? Sounds like the C&AG should investigate it for waste !

cYp
 

politico123

Active member
Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
276
No 3rd round but yeah more or less 160 interviews for two jobs, that were already decided before the applications were sent in seemingly. It's the fact that the guy isn't as well qualified as others I know and the fact that he is connected to the county manager's office and a local councillor that has annoyed me most.

It's nothing to do with me at the end of the day, but just shows how ridiculous the system is. I work in the PS and things like this gives everyone a bad name.
 

Flimflam

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Joined
Apr 21, 2009
Messages
314
Now, it transpires that the man who got the job is related to someone who works in the county manager's office.
Nepotism in local authorities has always been rife. The family members of the senior staff always rise through the ranks very quickly compared to everybody else, regardless of their lack of qualifications.
 

southwestkerry

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Joined
Aug 20, 2008
Messages
4,230
I think myself anyone who want a job in the council needs to have a granny working in the right department first. Or a granddad. It also helps to be in the GAA with a reference from the local pillar off society. Snobbery in short.
SwK
 
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
22,911
Hi,



Friend of mine went for a job with the local authority. It took the council five months from the application deadline to fill the vacancy. This included two interviews, where they interviewed 120 people in the first round and only took it down to forty for the second. .
Interview 120 people !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

FFS what a sheer waste of time.

Interview 12 max thats it.

4 for second interview.
 

dresden8

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Joined
Feb 5, 2009
Messages
14,937
Nepotism in local authorities has always been rife. The family members of the senior staff always rise through the ranks very quickly compared to everybody else, regardless of their lack of qualifications.
People who howl for decentralisation should realise that this gives over power to organisations like the LAs and the HSE areas which are the playgrounds for the local gombeen FFers and FGers.

In an "advance forward" civil service recruitment now has sanction to be done "locally".

You guys should be thankful that you've gotten what you wished for.

You're gonna end up paying for it.
 
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