Our Recruitment Process

 Black and white of a group of 5 people who work in the Civil Service with coloured boxes overlayed.

We believe that workplaces are energised by the contribution of employees from all parts of society, leading to more responsive and inclusive policies, programmes, and services. People are central to our business and it is our priority to recruit a high-calibre and diverse workforce to deliver responsive and inclusive public services for the people of Ireland.

The large majority of Civil and Public Service roles are recruited through large volume recruitment competitions (Temporary and Permanent Clerical Officer, Executive Officer, Garda Trainee, Prison Officer, Third Secretary, and Administrative Officer / Graduate roles, amongst others). For specific Professional, Technical, and Management positions we recruit on a tailored basis throughout the year.

As recruitment competitions for many positions across the Civil and Public Service usually attract a high number of applicants, candidates are therefore required to undertake a range of relevant assessments and exercises over several selection stages. We use a demand-led approach which means candidates may be progressed in batches (i.e. groups of candidates at a time) through the various assessment stages at different times, based on the number of vacancies that arise.

Candidates successful at the final stage of the process are usually placed on a ‘panel’, where they are ranked in order of merit (i.e. ranked in numerical order based on their performance/score at final stage). Candidates will be taken from this list in order and offered a job or ‘appointment’, as vacancies become available.

Typical Recruitment Timelines

Timelines will vary depending on several factors including, but not limited to; volume of applications, number of vacancies, and resource availability due to volume of other live competitions at a given time. Panels are typically active for approximately 18-24 months and candidates can come under consideration at any point. However, there is no guarantee that being placed on a panel will lead to a job offer. The number of roles allocated from a panel depend on the number of relevant vacancies that arise in that time period.

Large volume recruitment competitions for general grades such as Temporary or Permanent Clerical Officer, Executive Officer and Administrative Officer can take several months due to the significant number of applications typically received. Candidates generally progress through each stage of the recruitment process in batches. Your batch number will be determined by the score you achieved in comparison to other applicants, at the stage of the competition. Candidates who score higher, progress more quickly.

Stages in Our Recruitment Process

Our recruitment process can vary greatly depending on the specific position or type of competition. The recruitment process may comprise of several stages, which are outlined in detail below. It is worth noting that not all stages of the recruitment process are used for every position. In addition, the below list of potential assessments are categorised but not necessarily in chronological order. Additional tests and exercises considered suitable may also be incorporated into the recruitment process.

Prior to each stage of the recruitment process, you will receive an invitation via your publicjobs.ie message board. Once you have accepted an invitation, you may receive familiarisation material, documentation, or the names of the Board Members in advance.

Please note that while we do our best to only call candidates forward to a panel where the demand exists, it does not guarantee you will be offered a position, as your place on the panel may not be reached if demand is lower than initially envisaged.

As our recruitment process, particularly for large volume competitions, is complex and often consisting of multiple batches progressed over a period of time, it is strongly advised that you refer to the Competition Information Booklet for each recruitment competition to determine that you fully meet the eligibility requirements before applying or undertaking any of the various assessment stages.

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Stage 1:

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Stage 2:

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Stage 3: Skills

Link to stage 4 interview below on same page

Stage 4:

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Stage 5: Pre-Employment
and Clearance

More Information

To find more information, please visit our FAQ page and to find helpful tips and practical information on how to prepare for the different stages of the recruitment process visit our Applications, Tests and Interviews sections below.

If you would like to get in touch, you can do so through the options provided on our Contact Us page.