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OMG, first interview in god knows how long! Civil service, framework! What? Arrghhh

(13 Posts)
HarryPottersMagicWand Fri 10-Feb-17 18:10:15

I haven't worked in years. Haven't had an interview in years. Used to have interviews and get the job, now I am not expecting the same as I am out of practice and have large gaps in my CV and no recent experience.

I have an interview for a court usher. They talk about competancies and having to prove them. I have to show evidence of Changing and Improving, Making Effective Decisions, Leading and Communicating, Collaborating and Partnering and Managing a Quality Service!

Within each heading is a list of stuff I have to cover. I'm not sure I have ever done some of it. My advisor at the job centre said to use having a family with a disability as proof of some things. I have helped on the PTA and helped out in the classroom last year so there may be some things I can draw on, but some, I have no idea. I can't think of anything that I have changed and improved with what they are asking - things like reviewing working practices, seek to exploit new technologies, be constructive with managers about raising issues and implementing changes and the impact of these on the service, responding effectively to an emergency! The only emergency I have had is when DS had a fit as a baby. My response is not one I want to give details on, running screaming in the street does not make me sound like I can deal with it effectively. Eventually I knocked on my neighbours door, who was a nurse and I only knew that because I had seen her uniform on the line. I guess I could use some of that as an example and omit the rest.

This is scary as hell as I really want this job, it sounds so interesting.

Idefix Sat 11-Feb-17 14:30:33

Harry have you downloaded a copy of the competencies framework? It can seem overwhelming when you first start to do these but eventually you get a knack for it.

Job centre is correct about the experience not being work related. Dh used a camping trip to demonstrate communication skills when he first applied.
They are very much looking to assess how you think rather than actual experience of the job as such.

Idefix Sat 11-Feb-17 14:32:38
Is really clear especially the bit about STAR.

Good luck with your application op.

Lilaclily Sat 11-Feb-17 14:37:09

Helping on the PTA did you change any procedures at all? Or did you implement any new ones by helping in the class room eg safeguarding measures ? I think you've got 2 good examples of experiences there that you can bend toward d the competencies

Exploit new technologies could be helping children in the class use interactive whiteboards or using Facebook- social media to advertise PTA events ?

HarryPottersMagicWand Sat 11-Feb-17 22:04:04

Thanks for the link. Will sit down and have a proper look when I'm not knackered (kids party today).

I've always been someone who just does what they are told to/what the job is. I've never been someone to change things. The only thing I have raised is the fact DS and his best friend had identical school reports last year, highlighted by the fact the targets said 'she'. The deputy head was very apologetic and said it should never have happened and offered to re do them. I suspect I have aspergers so I tend to be a rule follower.

New technologies, I organise our yearly mums Christmas meal and use a facebook group to do so as it's the best way and I can link it to phone numbers I have of people who aren't on facebook so they still get the details. I haven't specifically used the interactive whiteboards or advertised the PTA, I just help out with events, setting up and running stuff although I am about to be made secretary. The meeting day has changed so I am planning on trying to get some more parents involved by bringing this to their attention as a lot said they couldn't attend because of the day the meeting used to be on.

It's so hard to try and link this stuff and remember exactly when you may have done some of this.

Idefix Sat 11-Feb-17 22:20:19

Op the school report one is a really good. It shows that you are not afraid to challenge discrepancies, you are able to advocate (for ds) to achieve best outcomes for those who are vulnerable.

The other example is also a good exampl of being organised, delivering target (all people notified) utilising technology.

If you get an interview they will ime ask the competencies and allow you to talk through (embellish, big up) your competencies. Make sure you keep checking on the website as they will also give you feed back/score on your competencies.

The real skill is nailing it in the 250 word count.

I think if the job interest you and you are ready to embrace a different way of thinking then this may well be a good career move. I don't think having suspected aspergers needs to be a barrier. I imagine that in this role they want someone who will observe and adhere to procedure, being a rule follower needn't be a barrier. Especially as when you see an error (ds report) you are not afraid to speak out/challenge.

HarryPottersMagicWand Sat 11-Feb-17 22:44:11

250 word count? Is that for all of them together? No it can't be, per competency? I will read through it all and prepare, will take notes it too, advisor said I could do that.

That's great that I can use these examples. When you put the report example like that, it does show those things (in my mind it was wrong because it said she and I couldn't ever let that go as it would have annoyed me forever grin).

Idefix Sun 12-Feb-17 15:12:36

Yy to it being per comp, there is descending word count as you type.
They really just want to have any idea of your core values.

Sorry for poor English before, glass of wine and tiredness don't mix lol!
I hope you have had a chance to look through the stuff Harry I think it sounds/looks more scary because it is so different. Once you log onto the civil service website it keeps all your details so for future applications you don't have to do everything from scratch.

Manupprincess Sun 12-Feb-17 15:24:56

Hi Harry when is the application due? I used to be in the court service so maybe can help you. Would it be helpful for someone like me to read through your application? If you want me to then DM me, I can look this evening.

HarryPottersMagicWand Sun 12-Feb-17 20:07:07

Do I need to type it and send it? I thought I would be asked about each on at interview and was being told before so I could prepare. I would much rather type and send as I get flustered and say stuff that isn't even right sometimes. I was planning to write notes on it and take it. Haven't had chance to look properly yet as have DCs around. Interview isn't until the 28th anyway so plenty of time.

Manup. I've already submitted the application form. As I fit the minimum criteria (2 Cs at GCSE) and am classed as disabled, I was guaranteed an interview so that's where I am now. Now I'm preparing for the interview but it says I will have to demonstrate my competencies for this framework and should use the situation, something, something, result method. I have it written down. I assumed this meant prepare this for the interview but now I'm not sure if I'm expected to submit this beforehand.

Can I ask what you did manup? Are the court usher jobs quite straight forwards? Will I be expected to be on my feet a lot or rushing around? I have a chronic illness with which too much activity exacerbates it but it is a fine line of doing too much but me still wanting to and being able to do some things. I'm desperate to return to work and have always had an interest in crime and the criminal justice system so this just sounds so right for me.

Manupprincess Sun 12-Feb-17 21:44:21

No it should mean you will have to talk about them, not write anything down so don't worry. You can take your notes in with you if they will help ( just make sure they are on neat paper).
I was a court manager and one of my teams included the ushers. It depends what type of court it is - criminal, civil or combined; where the court is (so how busy) and the layout of the court (older ones are tricky as not really designed for what we do now). The usher is responsible for keeping everything running smoothly- make sure the papers are in the right place at the right time, people are called into the court at the right time and basically that the judges are kept happy. Being a parent is great preparation for being an usher. You need to anticipate what is going to be neeeded beforehand so court (and the judge) isnt made to wait. Court time is very expensive and there is always a backlog of cases so trying to make the most of limited resources. I can't answer about how you will find it physically because it depends on the court itself but the civil service is usually good at making reasonable adjustments. It's a great career to develop in if you want - court clerk is the obvious next step which I have always found to be one of the most interesting jobs.
To be honest, when I am interviewing I am looking for someone who has a bit of spark, can show some initiative and get on with the job. The fact you care and are interested is half the battle.
If you have time then do a quick look on the this page so you are familiar with their priorities.
As an aside, one of my clerks had aspergers and was great as he liked to follow rules, our judges appreciated it so don't worry about that at all.
Can you practice doing interview questions with anyone?

Manupprincess Sun 12-Feb-17 21:44:47

Sorry for the very long post.

buzzmoon Sun 12-Feb-17 21:47:23

Competencies are all about telling a story (the STAR method) and the key is the outcome and the impact you had on it. You'll be absolutely fine- good luck!

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