National Firefighter Selection (NFS)
The processes used for the selection of firefighters across the UK involve participants taking part in a variety of job simulation exercises whilst being observed by a team of trained assessors. Interviews, psychometric tests and written exercises are also used, as well as tests of physical ability. Extensive research has shown this approach to be the most objective and accurate method of assessing an individual's potential to perform safely and effectively.
Local Authority Fire and Rescue Services in England are expected to use the National Firefighter Selection (NFS) process when recruiting firefighters for Wholetime and Retained Duty (On-Call) systems. The NFS process comprises standard application, written test, role-related physical test and interview stages and was developed to test the skills, personal qualities and attributes necessary to fulfill the firefighter role. This process also helps to ensure that recruitment is relevant to the role, nationally consistent, fair and reflects the core values of the Fire and Rescue Service.
Recruitment in England is undertaken at a local level and anyone interested in becoming a firefighter should therefore contact their local Fire and Rescue Service for information about applying to join them. For general queries about the NFS process, and the careers and recruitment information accessible through the links on the left of this page, please contact your local fire and rescue service. Alternatively visit: http://www.cfoa.org.uk/10007.
The Scottish Government has supported the development of an on-line recruitment portal for Scottish Local Government known as "myjob Scotland". A considerable amount of effort has gone into developing a recruitment and selection process that adopts the principles of the NFS within the "myjob Scotland" portal.
Scottish Fire and Rescue Services are working together in partnership with CoSLA and the Improvement Service to adopt a shared services approach to recruitment advertising and administration by developing the "myjob Scotland" recruitment portal for all eight Fire and Rescue Services.
Recruitment is currently undertaken at a service level. Information on local recruitment and timetables can be found on their local services websites. For queries about the Scottish Firefighter Selection Tests, please contact:
Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Service
Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Headquarters
Hamilton ML3 0EA
Tel: 01698 402315
Recruitment in Wales is undertaken at a local level through the National Firefighter Selection (NFS) process for Wholetime firefighters and is currently being rolled out across the Retained Duty System. Anyone who would like to know more about becoming a firefighter should contact their local Fire and Rescue Service directly. Contact details for the three Welsh Fire and Rescue Services can be found under "Local Fire and Rescue Services" at www.wales.gov.uk/fire. General information in both English and Welsh on careers in the Fire Service can also be found under the "Workforce Development" page of this link.
For details on Firefighter selection tests in Northern Ireland please contact:
Human Resources Department
Fire & Rescue Service Headquarters
1 Seymour Street
Tel: 028 9266 4221
Fax: 028 9267 7402
or visit the Northern Ireland FRS website at www.nifrs.org