Senior Service Delivery Manager, Melanie Crawford, gives an insight into the service enhancements that are coming to NHS Jobs in July.

Surveys, events and user feedback all give us valuable insights into the way you use NHS Jobs and what you need from the platform. Based on what you’ve told us, we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to develop many improvements and service enhancements in a number of sections of the site.

One area where you have told us you would like to see improvements is in the reference section. We have designed a number of enhancements to make this process work better for both employers and candidates.

 


 

1. Reference types

You said… “As a Recruitment Manager, I want to update the type of references candidates can select to make them more relevant.”

We did… We have removed ‘Professional’ and ‘Educational/Academic values’ and added ‘School / College / University / Higher Education’. We’ve also changed the order so that the candidate’s most recent details are first:

  • Current employer
  • Previous employer
  • School/College/University/Higher Education
  • Personal/Character

 

2. Referee contact details

You said… “As a Recruitment Manager, I want to ensure the ‘Email’ field for referees is a mandatory requirement.”

We did… We’ve changed the ‘Email’ field to a mandatory field and renamed it ‘Email address of referee.’

 

You said… “I want to see a help icon next to ‘Email address of referee’ to explain why this is a mandatory field.”

We did… We’ve added a help icon with the following message:

Employers contact referees via email address as this speeds up the recruitment process.

Email address for employers must be a valid work email address and not the referee’s personal email address unless:

  • the email address being provided is covering a gap in work history
  • the employer no longer exists
  • the referee being used is a personal/character referee

You must provide an email address for each referee and we may require you to contact your referee to confirm this prior to submitting your application, as this is a mandatory field.

 

You said… “I want to show a help icon next to ‘Can the referee be approached prior to interview?’ to explain why this field is mandatory.”

We did… We’ve added a help icon with the following message:

Referees are not usually contacted before interview but in certain circumstances it may be necessary to do so. For example if you are applying for a senior role, such as a medical consultant or board member.

3. Referee time periods

You said… “As a Recruitment Manager, I want to allow referees to be able to enter the time period their reference covers.”

We did… We’ve added an extra field for reference period with drop down menus to select the date From (MM/YYYY) To (MM/YYYY)

 

You said… “I want to show a help icon next to ‘Period this reference covers’ to explain why this field is mandatory.”

We did… We’ve added a help icon with the following message:

You need to give referee details so the employing organisation can confirm your last 3 consecutive years of employment, training or education history.

Please ensure the ‘From’ date is before the ‘To’ date  otherwise an error message will be displayed.

 

4. Referee relevancy

You said… “As an NHS Jobs Recruitment Manager, I want to ensure that only the most recent referee is mandatory, so that applicants have the option to only submit one referee if they cover the last three years of employment or training, or if  they are an NHS to NHS applicant, as per NHS Employers guidance.”

We did… We’ve amended the application form to have only the most recent referee as a mandatory field. If an applicant adds more than one referee to cover their last three years of employment, all existing mandatory fields remain mandatory.

 

You said…“I want to see an update to the referee page description to ensure that job seekers understand the latest information required when supplying reference details.”

We did… We’ve updated the referee landing page description to say:

Referee Fields marked with an asterisk * are mandatory.

Please provide the names and full contact details of your referees. References must cover a 3 year period of continuous employment, training or education. Your referees will need to confirm this. They may need to comment on your skills, personal qualities and suitability for the post.

  • Your referee could be an HR department, line manager or someone in a position of responsibility.
  • You must provide an email address for each referee. This may require you to contact your referee to confirm this prior to submitting your application, as this is a mandatory field. 
  • If you are a student or trainee this should include a teacher/tutor at your school/college or university. If you have not been in employment or education for the last 3 years, you may need to supply a character reference or a personal statement. A character reference must not be from a relative or someone who has a financial arrangement with you.  
  • Emails for employers must be a valid work email address and not the referees personal email address unless the email being provided is covering a gap in work history or the employer no longer exists and the referee being used is a personal/character referee.
  • All reference requests will be verified by the recruiting employer. 
  • Referees may be approached before interview, unless you state otherwise below. 

 

5. Employment history

You said… “As a Job Seeker, I want to be able to select a consent option to transfer my previous NHS employment history from ESR to my new NHS employer.”

We did… We’ve added an additional question under the referee section:

If your application is successful and you have worked for an NHS organisation that used the Electronic Staff Record (ESR) system, you can give consent to your employment history being to your new employer. Please select one of the values below to confirm you consent to the transfer of your data.

The following options have been added as radio button(s):

  • Yes
  • No
  • Not applicable

 


 

These service enhancements are expected to be released in July 2019 and will apply to all application types (CV, short, standard and medical) as well as the application profile.

Visit the latest news section of the NHS Jobs website for information about new releases and service updates.

 

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