Trainee Inspector of Health & Safety (FOD Band 4/HEO)

Health and Safety Executive

Closing date: 1 Oct 2017

Reference number



£29,472 Rising to £37,292 after 2 years - Candidates in London receive an additional £4,260 LW allowance


Higher Executive Officer
Band 4

Contract type


Business area

Other - Field Operations Division, Construction Division

Type of role

Health and Safety
Operational Delivery
Planning Inspector

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time



Number of posts



Ashford (Kent), South East : Basingstoke, South East : Bedford, Eastern : Bristol, South West : Chelmsford, Eastern : London : Norwich, Eastern : Nottingham, East Midlands : Oxted, South East : Plymouth, South West

About the job

Job description

Do you feel you could do some of the most vital work in Government, ensuring that more people come home safe and well from their jobs? You Can with the Health and Safety Executive.

Our mission is to reduce work-related illness, injury and death across Great Britain.

All of our Inspectors of Health and Safety recruited through this campaign will start their career within HSE's Field Operations Division (FOD) or Construction Division (CD). These are two of HSE's operational divisions, covering many employment sectors including construction, agriculture, general manufacturing, engineering, food and drink, quarries, entertainment, education, health services, local and central government and domestic gas safety.

You do not need to have previous health and safety experience as all our successful recruits will join our unique two year regulators' training programme for new inspectors (accredited by NEBOSH). This programme (funded by HSE) develops your skills and knowledge in technical expertise, legal knowledge and gives you the ability to enforce the law where and when you need to – as well as to give appropriate advice. Once you have successfully completed the programme, typically within two years, you will be re-banded with an appropriate salary increase to a qualified HM Inspector of Health and Safety.

You will also learn from and work with other technical experts as you develop in the role, and you will be able to call on the support and help of others to assist you, just as you will assist them. Your individual and collective efforts will make a huge impact on the health and safety of others.

Job responsibilities:
As an inspector you will be involved in a range of activities, notably inspections and investigations. Where appropriate, you will use various legal processes such as notices and prosecutions to secure health and safety compliance. We operate a cost recovery scheme known as Fee for Intervention (FFI). Whilst you won't be involved in the collection of the fee, you will need to notify the dutyholder at the time of their inspection and/or investigation if that visit is going to be cost recoverable and why.

Investigations cover accidents, dangerous occurrences, ill health and complaints and your role will be to uncover what has happened and why. You will have to be prepared to tell people that there is a material breach of the law (you will be given lots of training to help you identify and understand this), what action needs to be taken as a result and to put this in writing. This will have a financial cost for the dutyholder(s) responsible.

You will have the opportunity to work off site or outdoors; occasionally outside of normal working hours. Not everyone will appreciate what you will be trying to achieve and sometimes it might be a struggle to change attitudes and convince others about what is required. But you’ll find the support you receive from us is incredible and give you the confidence to deal with a wide range of duty holders.

The investigation of fatalities and serious accidents may mean visiting places where there is evidence of what has happened and, in some instances, the deceased may still be on site. You will work with other agencies such as the Police in such circumstances as well pulling from the valuable experience and expertise of colleagues and managers. At times, you may need to speak with the bereaved families and witnesses. You will need to be able to do this in a professional, but empathetic manner, communicating effectively with people at every level in an organisation and in the public arena.

Your aim will be to secure improvements through influence and persuasion and, if necessary, you must take formal enforcement action when you discover a risk of serious personal injury or significant breaches of the law. This is in addition to dealing with situations where a material breach has been found. It will be your responsibility to determine when and what action (i.e. notices and/or prosecution) to take and to gather and present appropriate evidence. You therefore need a logical and analytical mind and good organisational skills.
With our training and support, you will conduct cases in the Magistrates' Court (except in Scotland, where the legal system differs) and you may need to appear as a witness in court or at an Employment Tribunal.

As you might expect, this role can take you to all sorts of workplaces and conditions, and you may need to access various parts of the workplace, including at height. You therefore need to be reasonably fit. Obviously your health and safety is paramount to us and we will provide you with a range of personal protective clothing depending on the workplace you are visiting. When you are in the office, you will be dealing with the follow-up to investigations and inspections using HSE's information and recording systems.

Becoming a Health and Safety inspector is hugely varied and rewarding and you’ll be challenged in ways you won’t expect. The variety means that it is never dull. And you have an incredible opportunity to make a very positive impact on workers lives.

If you’re still not convinced that this is the job for you, meet our inspectors and discover more on Facebook - or click on the link at the bottom.

More information about our Regulators' training programme (RTP):
Our regulators' training programme dovetails field-work with blended learning. As a trainee inspector you can study for and successfully obtain the NEBOSH Diploma (level 7) in Regulatory Occupational Health and Safety – unique to HSE. The first two years focus predominantly on giving you the legal knowledge - while you work supported in the field, so that you can inspect, investigate and enforce the law. This is integrated with the foundation of core technical training to identify health and safety problems, analyse situations, judge legal compliance and any corrective action needed.

Your development and performance will be assessed against key developmental milestones and your successful and timely achievement against these milestones will be an essential element in remaining employed by HSE. It will be a condition of your continued employment with HSE that you successfully complete the Diploma.

HSE will provide comprehensive support to you whilst training through your manager, a dedicated coach and development managers. And you’ll gain support through your fellow trainees too.

Achievement of the development milestones, including a pass in the required assessments, will make you eligible for promotion to main grade inspector and further elements of the training programme. As a main grade inspector your salary increases to £37,292 and you should acquire this within two years of starting the programme. The third year of the training programme follows the same experiential learning process as the first two, called Continuing Professional Development (CPD). It expands on the technical knowledge of occupational health and safety issues so that you can competently deal with the multitude of business we regulate.

Occasionally during the regulators’ training programme you will be required to travel for an overnight stay for a workshop. In addition, tutorials are usually one-day training events that can be travelled to and from inside a day. Due to the blended-learning approach on the learning management system, the amount of classroom time will be reduced to a minimum.

Due to the demands of the Regulators’ Training Programme, successful candidates will be expected to work full-time at least during their training period.

Attributes required:

Whatever your background or degree subject, you need to be committed to improving health and safety in the workplace. We are looking for high calibre individuals with:
• A minimum of a 2:1 Honours degree in any subject or a higher qualification (National Careers Service contains a list of qualifications).
• Strong communication skills, enabling you to collaborate and partner with others as well as to influence change at all levels;
• Sound analytical skills with the ability to write effective reports and to present complex information, in a clear and concise way for a non-technical, sometimes adversarial, audience;
• Drive, determination and good planning skills which will enable you to deliver at pace;
• Initiative and decisiveness, supporting your ability to make effective decisions;
• Commitment to your learning and development to achieve the Regulators' Training programme, with the ability to proactively manage your own learning needs, continually seeking and acting on feedback to evaluate and improve your own and the organisations performance.


A full driving licence that permits you to drive in the UK, unless reasonable adjustments can be made under the Equality Act 2010.

Please note, verification of your Driving Licence MUST be produced at the Assessment Centre. You will not be allowed to participate without this.


Due to the post graduate level training programme for this post, you must hold a 2:1 Honours degree in any subject or a higher qualification (Please see National Careers Service link containing a list of equivalent qualifications -

Please note if you are invited to attend the assessment stage you MUST bring your original qualification document(s)for verification. You will not be allowed to participate without this.


We'll assess you against these competencies during the selection process:

  • Changing and improving
  • Making effective decisions
  • Leading and communicating
  • Collaborating and partnering
  • Delivering at pace

Civil Service Competency Framework



Civil Service pension schemes may be available for successful candidates.


HSE recognises the importance of a good work life balance, which is reflected in our excellent reward package. Some of the benefits available are support with childcare and holiday play scheme costs by providing childcare vouchers for staff who meet the eligibility criteria. We also offer a generous maternity/adoption/paternity leave package as well as flexible working options where business needs allow. For example we offer: job share, compressed hours, term-time working, part-time working.

Your annual leave allowance will be 25 days, increasing to a maximum of 30 days after five years’ service.
In addition, all staff receive the Queen’s Birthday as a privilege one day holiday and eight days’ bank and public holidays.

Civil Service Pension - You will be entitled to join the highly competitive Civil Service Pension Scheme to which HSE contribute 20.9%. Many experts agree this one of the most generous in the UK.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies recently said that “the biggest difference between public and private sectors remains the value of employer contributions to public service pensions. These are much more generous in the public sector than in the private sector”.
If you have accrued pension rights in another pension scheme, you may be eligible to transfer these rights into the Civil Service Pension Scheme.

We also offer a wide range of other benefits including Cycle to work scheme, advance of salary; lifestyle vouchers; membership to Civil Service members association; membership to Civil Service Sports Council and more.


For successful candidates based in London there will be an additional London Weighting (LW) allowance of £4,260

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must pass basic security checks.

Nationality statement

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules.

If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.

Selection process details

Stage 1: Complete a short form application - this includes your personal details and eligibility for the post. Completion of this form will then trigger a request via email to complete the online Verbal Reasoning test and the online Civil Service Judgement Test.

Stage 2: Assessment Centre - If you pass the online tests you will be required to attend an Assessment Centre. The centre will run between 23rd October 2017 and 10th November 2017 and will be held at HSE's Headquarters in Redgrave Court, Merton Road, Bootle, Merseyside, L20 7HS
*Please note Candidates invited to the Assessment Centre will be required to attend for one whole day during this assessment period. The day will consist of 4 assessments.

Planned start dates for successful applicants – February/March 2018
Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.


Candidates in their probationary period are eligible to apply for vacancies within this department.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

If you have any queries or require further information please contact the HR Resourcing team at

Online test instructions

Please complete both tests by Midnight 1st October 2017

Sift/interview dates and location

Sift - A Verbal reasoning and Civil Service Judgement test.

*Please be aware the close date for this vacancy is Midnight 1st October, but this includes undertaking the above online tests. We would encourage you to take the tests as soon as possible.

Assessment Centre will be held between 23rd October 2017 and 10th November 2017

Further information

It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of the terms and conditions they will adopt should they be successful in their application. For a summary of HSE terms and conditions as part of Civil Service Reform, please see the attached document.

IMPORTANT: When registering, you should indicate on your application the specific office locations in which you would be willing and able to work, with a maximum of up to three choices.
*Please note: Although we will try to accommodate location preferences, you should be aware that we may not be able to accommodate your preferred location should you be successful.

The five competencies listed above will be assessed throughout the selection process. More details can be found in the Civil Service Competency Framework:

If you have a disability and you need an application form in an alternative format, or you would like to know more about the recruitment process, please email HSE's HR Resourcing Team at headed Band 4 Trainee 2017.

Details of the Civil Service Nationality Rules are located at:

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements. For the most up-to-date information on the requirements of working in the UK, please go to the UK Border Agency website:

If you believe that Civil Service Commission principles of selection for appointment on merit on the basis of Fair and Open competition have not been met you can raise a complaint by emailing: or by writing to HSE at the following address:

HSE Resourcing Team
6.3 Redgrave Court
L20 7HS

Alternatively you can contact Civil Service commissioners
Candidates can claim travel costs if they attend an interview/selection stage for the vacancy.

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