The Recruitment Process

This page explains what you can expect from the recruitment process when applying for SPCB roles. As MSPs recruit their own staff, the recruitment process for their vacancies will be outlined within the individual adverts.

Our recruitment policy is based on the principle of fair and open competition. All appointments will be based on merit using fair and robust selection criteria. Our values of Stewardship, Inclusiveness, Excellence and Respect will be used throughout.

Applying for a job

The first step is to register using our register on this site link at the top of the page.

You’ll be asked to create a profile and you can upload a CV if you wish. This could save you time when making your application.

You can then apply for the job you are interested in.

We’re a Disability Confident Leader employer and we are committed to the employment and career development of disabled people. If you have a disability defined by the Equality Act, you're eligible to apply through the guaranteed interview scheme.

Under the scheme we guarantee to interview anyone with a disability whose application meets the minimum criteria for the job (described in the job advert). If you have a disability and would like to talk to us about any aspects of the recruitment process, please get in touch with the HR Office on 0131 348 6500 or email

What happens next

You’ll find the closing date of the vacancy in the job advert, as well as interview dates where possible.

At this stage you may be asked to complete some online testing (this is primarily used for high volume recruitment to sift candidates)


Each application is given a score and a final short-list is agreed by the selection panel. The applicants that receive the highest scores will be invited to interview (with the exception of candidates who apply under the Disability Symbol Scheme who may be invited if they receive the minimum acceptable score).

In most cases you’ll be told the outcome of your application within three weeks of the closing date.

The interview

If your application is successful, you’ll be invited for an interview. The selection process can vary depending on the role you’ve applied for, but as a minimum you can expect a face-to-face interview.

During the interview, we’ll talk to you about your skills and experience. We’ll also ask you to give us specific examples of when you’ve demonstrated the behaviours that are important for the role you’ve applied for.

Depending on the role, we may also ask you to:

  • complete a psychometric assessment, helping us assess your personality traits
  • a skills test
  • prepare something ahead of the interview, like a presentation or portfolio, to showcase your experience, capability and potential.

Whatever the situation, we’ll let you know what to expect from your interview in advance, giving you enough time to prepare.

If you need adjustments to be made due to a disability, let us know in advance of your interview so we can make the necessary arrangements.

How to prepare for the interview

We’ll send you all the information you need in advance of the interview, such as:

  • who you’ll be meeting
  • how long the interview will be
  • any specific information that may be part of the selection process

All interviews take place at The Scottish Parliament, Holyrood. We do not normally reimburse travel expenses for interviews.

When you arrive for your interview please allow extra time to go through security.

After the interview

We’ll aim to let you know the outcome of your interview as soon as we can. This will normally be within 10 working days. If you’re unsuccessful at interview stage, you can ask us for feedback. We want to ensure a positive candidate experience, so we’ll also contact you to ask for your feedback on the whole recruitment process.

Onboarding Process

If you’re successful at interview, you’ll be asked to complete our onboarding process. This includes security clearance and may include a health assessment carried out by our Occupational Health provider. You will also be asked to provide proof of your eligibility to work in the United Kingdom.

We will provide you with details of our security vetting policy and you will be required to complete a security questionnaire. Some of our roles will require membership of the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. For further information, please see our Policy on the employment of ex-offenders and use of disclosure.


If you’re successful, we’ll approach previous and/or current employers for a reference. If you have no employment history we may approach any school, college or university you have attended.

We can only make a formal offer of employment once we have received your security clearance, eligibility to work in the UK and references. Your health assessment will be used to inform us of any adjustments you require before you start with us.

Contacting the recruitment team

If you have any questions or problems using our recruitment system contact our recruitment team or call us on 0131 348 6500.