HSE exists in order to help prevent work-related fatalities, injuries and cases of ill health to those at work and those affected by work activities. HSE does this in its role as the Regulator for enforcing health and safety legislation across major areas of work activities across Great Britain.
All of HM Inspectors of Health and Safety recruited through this campaign will start their career within HSE’s Field Operations Directorate (FOD). This is HSE’s largest operational Directorate, 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.
Successful recruits will join our regulators’ training programme for inspectors. This programme will ensure that you are supported in developing the necessary legal knowledge, technical expertise and ability to enforce the law where you need to and to give appropriate advice.
You will also have access to others with greater and/or different technical expertise and you will be able to call on the support and help of others to assist you, just as you will assist them. The role is hugely varied and rewarding. The variety means that it is never dull. You have an incredible opportunity to make a very positive impact on many people’s working lives.
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 will cover accidents, dangerous occurrences, ill health and complaints. 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 HSE needs to take as a result and to put this in writing. This will have a financial cost for the dutyholder/s.
You will need to work effectively and efficiently and sometimes outside of normal working hours. You may be carrying out an inspection or investigating an accident, perhaps outdoors, in inclement weather. 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.
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. At times, you may need to speak with the bereaved families and traumatised and distressed witnesses, as well as anxious and concerned duty holders. 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.
As an inspector, 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 such action (i.e. notices and/or prosecution) may be appropriate and to gather and present appropriate evidence. You therefore need a logical and analytical mind and good organisational skills.
You will be required to 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. Training and support will be given to enable you to effectively manage these situations.
During inspections and investigations, to complete your work effectively you may be required to access various parts of the workplace, including at height. You therefore need to be reasonably fit. You need to be prepared to use a range of personal protective clothing when appropriate. 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.
It is a demanding job, but enormously worthwhile and you will be given a lot of support, development and training to achieve it.
Regulators’ training programme
Our regulators’ training programme dovetails field-work with classroom-based training in order to best help you develop the essential skills of a regulator.
The first two years focus predominantly on providing you with the legal knowledge that you will need to enable you to inspect, investigate and enforce the law. This is integrated with the foundation of core technical training that will enable you to identify health and safety problems, analyse situations, and judge legal compliance and any corrective action needed.
The regulators’ training programme requires attendance at tutorial classes, usually lasting a whole working week and you will frequently therefore be required to stay away from home during this period.
The third year of the training programme follows the same experiential learning process as the first two. It expands on the technical knowledge of occupational health and safety issues to enable you to competently deal with the multitude of business we regulate.
Throughout the three years of your regulators’ training programme, your development and performance will be assessed against key developmental milestones. Your successful and timely achievement against these milestones will be an essential element in remaining employed by HSE as HM Inspector of Health and Safety. You will be required to pass an assessment centre where you will demonstrate you have learned some legal skills, and to complete two substantial written assignments where you will show practical application of the technical knowledge you have learned. Achievement of the development milestones, including a pass in the required assessments, will make you eligible for promotion to main grade inspector and the third and final year of the training programme
Successful completion of our Regulators’ Training Programme will see you awarded a certificate from the National Examining Body in Occupational Safety and Health at level 7 (post graduate diploma). This qualification is unique to HSE and can only be achieved working as a regulator in HSE.
Whatever your background, 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. Please note verification of qualifications must be produced at the Assessment Centre in September/October 2014.
- A full driving licence that permits you to drive in the UK, unless reasonable adjustments can be made under the Equality Act 2010.
- 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, 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.
How to apply
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 firstname.lastname@example.org Band 4 trainee 2014. Please note, due to the volume of applications expected, telephone calls cannot be taken regarding this vacancy.