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Principal Officer in the Civil Service

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Comments



  • hardybuck wrote: »
    Is anyone aware of movement since late October?

    Last I heard was no. 57 assigned a couple of weeks ago. There are so few of us left!




  • Glinda wrote: »
    Last I heard was no. 57 assigned a couple of weeks ago. There are so few of us left!


    All depends on where you are looking for - Dublin is fine but there is little or no movement in positions outside Dublin - I'm mid twenties and still waiting :-(




  • Glinda wrote: »
    Last I heard was no. 57 assigned a couple of weeks ago. There are so few of us left!

    There are 78 on the panel.

    Therefore if they have only assigned up to number 57, there are 21 i.e. over a quarter of those on the panel, still awaiting an offer.

    That's the case as regards Dublin. In addition to that, as mentioned by adrem, there is an unquantified number who were placed up to 57, who put regional locations as their first and second preference, who have yet to receive any offer at all.

    The terms of the competition indicated that the panel could be in place for up to 2 years. Considering they only began assigning in late November 2017, there should be nearly a full year to run.




  • redthermos wrote: »
    There are 78 on the panel.

    Therefore if they have only assigned up to number 57, there are 21 i.e. over a quarter of those on the panel, still awaiting an offer.

    That's the case as regards Dublin. In addition to that, as mentioned by adrem, there is an unquantified number who were placed up to 57, who put regional locations as their first and second preference, who have yet to receive any offer at all.

    The terms of the competition indicated that the panel could be in place for up to 2 years. Considering they only began assigning in late November 2017, there should be nearly a full year to run.


    There's more than 21 waiting when you take into account those waiting for regional positions.

    When I last spoke with PAS they said they expected the panel to expire at the end of Q1 2019.




  • Nocrac wrote: »
    There's more than 21 waiting when you take into account those waiting for regional positions.

    When I last spoke with PAS they said they expected the panel to expire at the end of Q1 2019.

    Why would they close the panel after 16 months, when the terms of the competition provided for it to be in place for up to 24 months and there are still people on it awaiting placement?


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  • redthermos wrote: »
    Why would they close the panel after 16 months, when the terms of the competition provided for it to be in place for up to 24 months and there are still people on it awaiting placement?

    Because they are getting through 20 every 4 months?




  • Rosen wrote: »
    Appointments made to mid-40s
    This was posted by Rosen 12 June. According to Glinda above, they were at 57 a few weeks ago...which makes the pace at around 2 per month.




  • redthermos wrote: »
    Why would they close the panel after 16 months, when the terms of the competition provided for it to be in place for up to 24 months and there are still people on it awaiting placement?

    As someone at the upper end of the panel who has been awaiting a regional placement, it would be incredibly disappointing if the panel closes after 16months with almost no (if any) regional placements. What’s the point in running a regional competition at PO level at all?




  • Any idea how many are on regional panels?




  • Rosen wrote: »
    As someone at the upper end of the panel who has been awaiting a regional placement, it would be incredibly disappointing if the panel closes after 16months with almost no (if any) regional placements. What’s the point in running a regional competition at PO level at all?

    It would seem from post #899 that only 21 had actually been appointed from this panel by mid-October.


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  • redthermos wrote: »
    Why would they close the panel after 16 months, when the terms of the competition provided for it to be in place for up to 24 months and there are still people on it awaiting placement?

    It may be that they'll get to the stage, quite soon, that the number of people who want to accept positions in Dublin has been exhausted. To continue to fill positions in Dublin they'll need a new panel, otherwise the whole thing could grind to a halt for six months.




  • Given the fact that the panel is largely made up of serving civil servants, the fact that so many are still waiting yet the panel is exhausting in Dublin would point to an emerging problem of a glass ceiling in regional locations. Loads of APs and nowhere to go/grow.

    If promotional prospects are that grim in regional locations, what does that do to the morale of the people working in those locations that have put the hard yards in and managed to get on what is a very tough panel?

    I know the reply is going to be "well the demand is in Dublin etc." and I get that (although I would have views on the necessity of having so many positions in Dublin - obviously this will vary from Dept. to Dept.), but given that decentralisation has, in fact, happened, perhaps the service needs to think about the next step in its evolution to respond to this emerging issue?

    Like has been said above, what's the point in having regional preferences on this panel? Maybe they should do regional competitions separately.




  • Maybenever wrote: »
    Given the fact that the panel is largely made up of serving civil servants, the fact that so many are still waiting yet the panel is exhausting in Dublin would point to an emerging problem of a glass ceiling in regional locations. Loads of APs and nowhere to go/grow.

    If promotional prospects are that grim in regional locations, what does that do to the morale of the people working in those locations that have put the hard yards in and managed to get on what is a very tough panel?

    I know the reply is going to be "well the demand is in Dublin etc." and I get that (although I would have views on the necessity of having so many positions in Dublin - obviously this will vary from Dept. to Dept.), but given that decentralisation has, in fact, happened, perhaps the service needs to think about the next step in its evolution to respond to this emerging issue?

    Like has been said above, what's the point in having regional preferences on this panel? Maybe they should do regional competitions separately.

    I think it would be fair to say that people who took roles in regional offices did so with their eyes open. I suspect that a number of them took those roles taking their work/life balance into account, and the value of their salaries in regional locations. I suspect that they're now choosing to stay there taking the same factors into account.

    You hear stories about some people out there who took promotions to go to certain regions during decentralisation who really shouldn't have gotten them.

    While you raise a valid point about morale, I also hear stories about mini competitions held within regions, or internal competitions which seek to place a number of people from regions on their panels to ensure morale is taken care of and to ensure that vacancies in those locations can be filled if they arise.

    Decentralisation wasn't planned for. It was announced. We all know that and there are problems with it. There is probably a need to review what needs to be done now that the organisation has issues to consider arising from it.




  • I think your first point is less valid now than it was when decentralization happened tbf - as the number of "outsiders" coming to the service increases and those that took up positions in the first instance change and evolve. I also think it speaks to the core of the issue - attitudes need to evolve.

    I am one of those outsiders that took quite a pay cut to take up a position from the AP panel, on the basis that a PO position may not come around that soon, particularly as I am fairly far back on the panel. But I did want to join the service as I see it as a job that contributes to the "common good" (or that I share public sector values, if you will). So I'm not complaining as there are other very good people in front of me that have put the hard yards in, as I said (although I feel I've achieved a lot getting on the panel in the first place as it is very biased to serving public servants, in my humble opinion).

    I am quite surprised, however, that this issue exists. I certainly wouldn't have been aware of it from the outside and those I spoke to before joining spoke of "good chances of promotion, particularly if you are already on the panel". You may call me naïve and that's ok, but I think that this issue isn't going to go away.

    Anyway, mini rant over. ;)




  • Maybenever wrote: »
    I think your first point is less valid now than it was when decentralization happened tbf - as the number of "outsiders" coming to the service increases and those that took up positions in the first instance change and evolve. I also think it speaks to the core of the issue - attitudes need to evolve.

    I am one of those outsiders that took quite a pay cut to take up a position from the AP panel, on the basis that a PO position may not come around that soon, particularly as I am fairly far back on the panel. But I did want to join the service as I see it as a job that contributes to the "common good" (or that I share public sector values, if you will). So I'm not complaining as there are other very good people in front of me that have put the hard yards in, as I said (although I feel I've achieved a lot getting on the panel in the first place as it is very biased to serving public servants, in my humble opinion).

    I am quite surprised, however, that this issue exists. I certainly wouldn't have been aware of it from the outside and those I spoke to before joining spoke of "good chances of promotion, particularly if you are already on the panel". You may call me naïve and that's ok, but I think that this issue isn't going to go away.

    Anyway, mini rant over. ;)

    Ah yeah, you took the risks and that's life. If people don't want to stay because they've got nothing to look forward to they're not hostages, and there will be lots of people happy to replace them, most competitions are heavily oversubscribed.

    You still have a good chance of promotion, if you want to accept the job that's offered to you. The organisation will locate the positions where the organisation needs them at the end of the day.




  • hardybuck wrote: »

    Decentralisation wasn't planned for. It was announced.

    hardybuck wrote: »
    The organisation will locate the positions where the organisation needs them at the end of the day.

    Just pointing out the inherent contradiction in your posts there.

    The Civil Service doesn’t decide where the posts are best located... it’s all a political decision.




  • Just pointing out the inherent contradiction in your posts there.

    The Civil Service doesn’t decide where the posts are best located... it’s all a political decision.

    It's not a contradiction in my posts.

    Decentralisation was a political decision, but the Civil Service has been trying to deal with it afterwards.




  • hardybuck wrote: »
    It may be that they'll get to the stage, quite soon, that the number of people who want to accept positions in Dublin has been exhausted. To continue to fill positions in Dublin they'll need a new panel, otherwise the whole thing could grind to a halt for six months.

    See posts #908 and #911. At a rate of 2 per month and 21 appointed in the first 11 months, there's little likelihood of the Dublin panel being exhausted by end Q1 2019. No need for anything to "grind to a halt" either, even in the unlikely event that there was a rush in taking people from the panel. There exists a cohort of hundreds who were successful in the 2017 Principal Officer competition i.e. who met the required standard, who could be taken to the next stage if they need more people before the 24 month expiry date. The 2015 panel ran for 28 months.

    The main issue with the regional panels is that there appears to be no agreed system whereby when filling regional vacancies Departments take a certain proportion from this panel versus internal panels or internal transfers.




  • redthermos wrote: »
    See posts #908 and #911. At a rate of 2 per month and 21 appointed in the first 11 months, there's little likelihood of the Dublin panel being exhausted by end Q1 2019. No need for anything to "grind to a halt" either, even in the unlikely event that there was a rush in taking people from the panel. There exists a cohort of hundreds who were successful in the 2017 Principal Officer competition i.e. who met the required standard, who could be taken to the next stage if they need more people before the 24 month expiry date. The 2015 panel ran for 28 months.

    The main issue with the regional panels is that there appears to be no agreed system whereby when filling regional vacancies Departments take a certain proportion from this panel versus internal panels or internal transfers.

    It would be an utter farce if they denied an opportunity to people in 2019 to allow those who got in the top few hundred an opportunity to get called. Just because you met the required standard it doesn't mean you met the desired standard.

    A competition like this should be run every two years, which I think is pretty fair. Otherwise you're telling people with aspirations to go for those jobs that you'll only get a crack at it every 3-4 years, which wouldn't be good for anybody.

    My reading of it is that they'll probably complete a new competition in Q2 2019. Let's say for arguments sake the old panel will be active until end August, but it could be end June just as easy.

    If the panel was at 57 at end November, that means that they've got 21 people for potential Dublin vacancies, because being realistic that's where the jobs are. If two per month were being filled roughly, even if the panel ran until June, if would mean that they've got to find at least 14 people from the 21 who are left to take roles - and for all we know most of that 21 mightn't want to take Dublin roles. So yeah, things could definitely grind to a halt if another competition isn't launched.

    You may be right about the regional panels - but the main focus has to be to ensure the main vacancies can be filled.




  • Remember though that only 166 people were called to second stage in this 2017 competition (see Post #579) - which is (weirdly) precicely half the number (333) called to second stage in the previous 2015 competition.

    Maybe PAS intends revisiting the tranch of people 167-333 from the 2017 competition before launching a new one in early 2019?


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  • hardybuck wrote: »
    Just because you met the required standard it doesn't mean you met the desired standard.

    A competition like this should be run every two years, which I think is pretty fair.

    Agreed, a competition should be run every two years and the panel or panels from each competition should be in place for two years. The panel from this competition is 12 months old, not two years. So by all means run another competition in 2019 but don't draw from it until this panel has expired and you've given those who got through the hoops a fair two year crack of the whip...

    As you'll see from post #899, more people on the 2015 panel were called in 2017 than were called in 2016 or 2015.

    On the so-called desired standard, this is set by PAS as the qualifying mark in the competition and literally hundreds made that mark (even if that doesn't please you) (while hundreds also didn't.) PAS can set a higher qualifying mark if they think that will deliver a better result and come out with a smaller number who meet the qualifying mark - they didn't choose to do so. Last time as pointed out above, they brought twice the number to the second stage. Once through the qualifying stage, it is irrelevant where someone came on this test so the person who came 166 in the qualifying stage of the most recent competition may have come 1st in interview and the person who came 1st in this stage may not have made it through the interview.




  • Am I missing something in the last table (to q 182) - or has the 2:1 just been reversed?

    https://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2018-10-16a.215

    It says 244 were promoted internally and 108 taken from this and the previous open panel.

    If 244 were promoted internally and internals are to be one in three, that means there must have been 488 POs from open recruitment.

    If they are following the sequence, that means there must be another 380 POs somewhere...




  • What role should the AHCPS be playing here? If any?




  • Maybenever wrote: »
    What role should the AHCPS be playing here? If any?

    They should monitor the sequencing of appointments between open, interdepartmental and internal.

    They've also asked that the expiry date for a panel to be identified from the outset so everyone is clear.




  • hardybuck wrote: »
    They should monitor the sequencing of appointments between open, interdepartmental and internal.

    They've also asked that the expiry date for a panel to be identified from the outset so everyone is clear.

    So what you are saying is that given that they monitor it, they are therefore aware of the 380 accounting deficit.

    They asked for the expiry date to be identified from the outset. Yet, it was ! It was identified in the terms of the competition as being two years from the date of panel formation. That doesn't seem to be too difficult to comprehend, you'd think by that request that there was no date for expiry contained in the competition terms.

    To quote from the terms of the competition "At the end of the selection process a panel(s) of qualified candidates is formed from which vacancies may be filled. This panel may remain in place for up to two years. A panel is a list of qualified candidates ranked in order of merit from Stage 2 of the selection process. Should a vacancy arise and their place reached, candidates undergo the final stage of the selection process. "




  • Maybenever wrote: »
    What role should the AHCPS be playing here? If any?

    Presumably their members need to raise it with them.




  • I'm getting a couple of emails a week from HR about posts at PO level available for a two year secondment.

    If an existing PO goes on secondment, what happens to their current role?




  • There are plenty of PO posts coming up on the formal PO Mobility system. There a few panels or systems operating in parallel - HR, Communicatuons, various one offs, mobility, the open and internals is some Depts. AHCPS has a foot in all those camps so will offend someone no matter what.




  • The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform are supposed to monitor this.

    The union seems to be against this level of open recruitment and I've heard they are lobbying the Department claiming that open recruitment is causing problems with turnover so I think its unlikely they would really pursue the issue...


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  • redthermos wrote: »
    So what you are saying is that given that they monitor it, they are therefore aware of the 380 accounting deficit.

    They asked for the expiry date to be identified from the outset. Yet, it was ! It was identified in the terms of the competition as being two years from the date of panel formation. That doesn't seem to be too difficult to comprehend, you'd think by that request that there was no date for expiry contained in the competition terms.

    To quote from the terms of the competition "At the end of the selection process a panel(s) of qualified candidates is formed from which vacancies may be filled. This panel may remain in place for up to two years. A panel is a list of qualified candidates ranked in order of merit from Stage 2 of the selection process. Should a vacancy arise and their place reached, candidates undergo the final stage of the selection process. "

    According to the AHCPS, no closure date has been specified for the 2017 Open PO Panel.


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