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The Local Government Staff Commission (England)'s consultation paper is reproduced on LGCNet in two parts. This is...
The Local Government Staff Commission (England)'s consultation paper is reproduced on LGCNet in two parts. This is part 2.

Prior Consideration

7. The Government's policy guidance to the Commission states that staff in outgoing authorities who are not in senior management positions but who are not automatically transferred should have prior consideration for jobs in new or continuing authorities.

8. In order to be included in these prior consideration arrangements, staff will need formally to register their interest in a particular post or posts at the appropriate time.

9. Prior consideration procedures should be introduced by all authorities in the area as soon as the Secretary of State's decision on that area is announced. Prior consideration should apply to all permanent appointments to which automatic transfer or open competition do not apply, whether the vacancies arise from the creation of new posts or from normal staff turnover in existing posts.

Authorities will however recall that the Staff Commission's Circular number 2 recommended that permanent appointments to posts with an uncertain future should be avoided wherever possible in order to minimise potential redundancies at a later date.

10. The Commission feels that the geographic basis for prior consideration should be a narrow one, limited to staff working for the recruiting authority itself plus the staff of those other authorities from whom functions are being transferred to the recruiting authority, together with the staff of any abolished districts in the shire county area within which the recruiting authority is located.

Within this definition there is a strong case for excluding from prior consideration those staff who are accorded automatic transfer as described in paragraph 5 above or, in the case of a continuing authority, who hold a substantive post whose duties are unchanged.

11. In those cases where prior consideration does not produce a suitable candidate, then the recruiting authority should have discretion about how to proceed. If it wishes it may turn immediately to open recruitment.

Open Competition

12. The Commission's policy guidance makes it clear that appointments to the post of Head of Paid Service should be by fully open competition.

13. The Commission's view is that open competition should also apply to some other senior officers. As a general rule the Commission suggests that those senior management posts, on JNC For Chief Officers service conditions, which answer directly to the Head of Paid Service should be covered by open competition; this general rule should also apply to such posts in continuing authorities unless there is no substantial change to the posts, duties and responsibilities.


14. The Staff Commission intend shortly to publish a Code of Good Practice by the end of 1993. The Commission will from time to time need to satisfy itself that good practices have been followed in the operation of both open competition and prior consideration.

The Commission will be asking for quarterly returns, following the Secretary of State's announcement of a final decision, from all recruiting authorities, with details of all posts where open competition was used.


15. The Commission intend to publish a Circular on the above topics before the end of 1993. In order to take into account as wide a range of views as possible it would be helpful to receive responses to this paper by 3 December 1993.

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