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People & Talent

Employee Journey

This section covers what we call the Employee Journey. 

This includes Recruitment, Appointment, Induction, Development, Appraisal, and supporting employees who leave our service. 

If you have any queries, please contact the Resourcing and Talent team, via email: Recruitment@cumbriafire.gov.uk

Training session taking place at CFRS HQ

1 - Considering Your Resourcing Options

Before going out to external or internal recruitment, we advise all managers to consider the resourcing options available.

Resourcing Options

Below are some other resourcing options, but we advise contacting the Resourcing and Talent team to discuss beforehand. 

Casual Workers

Casual workers are workers as opposed to employees. This means that they have a limited set of employment rights. The document below provides guidance on the use and management of casual workers.

Casual Worker Guidance

Externally Provided Workforce (EPW)

The Service uses third party providers - employment agencies - to engage agency workers, interims, self-employed consultants or contractors (the 'Externally Provided Workforce', EPW). The document below provides interim guidance for managers on how to engage these individuals in line with procurement and employment legislation and the Service's rules and procedures.

EPW Guidance

EPW Business Case

For each new or extended EPW's the manager must complete an IR35 assessment to determine how and when their tax and NI contributions are paid. Please see the guidance below for further details:- 

EPW IR35 Guidance

1 - Considering Volunteers

This charter sets out the Service's approach to the recruitment of volunteers and our commitment to both them and the professional staff within the service.  This charter also sets out the expectations of the Service in terms of the role of volunteers to supplement and complement the delivery of services, how they will be supported and the responsibilities of all parties.

Volunteering Charter

1 - Considering a Market Supplement

A market supplement is an additional payment that enhances a basic salary. It can only be applied where there is evidence that the post cannot be filled or occupied at the current rate of pay.

Market Supplement Scheme

1 - Considering the Relocation Assistance Scheme

Relocation expenses may be paid to new or transferred employees were they meet the eligibility criteria. 

Relocation Assistance Scheme

Application and Authorisation Form

To make a claim, you will need to raise a ticket on the HR, Admin, and Payroll portal. 


1 - Considering a Career Grade Scheme

The Career Grade Scheme is available to Managers to support the recruitment and retention of appropriately skilled staff where jobs are hard to fill or to enable the transition for Apprentices or a person engaged through an agency / consultancy (Externally Provided Workforce) into employment with the Service.

There are key principles detailed in the Scheme which must be followed and the employee is expected to commit to working for the council for a minimum of 3 years after successfully achieving the required standards in the full role. The manager must obtain approval and ensure that the appropriate training (including qualification training if applicable) and other support is available before progressing with a career grade. 

Career Grade Scheme

Career Grade Manager's Guidance

2 - Advert, Shortlisting, and Appointment

The Recruitment, Appointment, and Induction Procedure  should be applied when dealing with vacancies and appointments.  

The Guidance and Templates provide more detailed background information and factors to be taken into account when recruiting and making appointment decisions.

This procedure and guidance should be used in conjunction with the recruitment, appointment and induction policy along with the process map (coming soon).

If you are recruiting to a newly created post, you will need to complete a post specification for the post, using the blank Post Spec template attached. 

2 - Shortlisting - Guaranteed Interview Scheme for Veterans

This Scheme is for Veterans, where an applicant meets the criteria set out in the HR procedure, and is for external appointments only.

Guaranteed Interview Scheme

2 - Shortlisting - Alternative Employment Programme (AEP)

The Alternative Employment Programme (AEP) has been developed to ensure that whenever possible the service retains the valuable skills, experiences and knowledge of its employees.  This also means that employees have the opportunity to continue working for us and continue to deliver excellent services.

Guidance is provided to support employees who find themselves at risk and also information to help support recruiting and line managers using the AEP.

AEP Guidance

2 - Appointment - Safer Recruitment and Employment

For informatrion on Safer Recruitment and Appointment, including DBS, please go to our dedicated web page:

Safer Recruitment and DBS | Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service 

3 - On-Boarding and Induction

The Resourcing and Talent team are currently reviewing the Induction process for corporate staff, but please see the existing toolkit attached below. 

Induction Toolkit

The Learning and Development Team support with the induction of Operational Staff. For more information, please contact them at: FireLD@Cumbriafire.gov.uk

4 - Probation

For Operational Staff:

The probation policy is intended to provide advice to employees and managers regarding the two year probationary period for all new firefighters.

Probation Policy

For Corporate Staff:

All external appointments will be subject to a six month probationary period irrespective of any previous continuous service.

Probation Policy - Coporate Staff

5 - Promotion and Development

Promotion Board Policy

The purpose of this Policy is to provide an overview of the promotion processes which take place within Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS)

Promotion Policy 

Internal Transfer 

An internal transfer is where an employee is appointed to a new job within the council on a fixed term or permanent basis. 

External Secondment

A secondment is where an individual (the 'secondee') transfers on a fixed term basis, for a specific purpose, either

•  into the Service from another organisation ('inward' secondment)


•  out of the Service to another organisation ('outward' secondment)

Secondment Guidance

Continuous Professional Development

This Policy details the method of achieving and maintaining Continual Professional Development (CPD) and associated payments for all Grey Book staff working either the Wholetime or On-call duty systems. The policy includes arrangements for administration, eligibility and assessment criteria.

Continuous Professional Development

For Line Management Changes, Extensions to Fixed Term Contracts, and any changes to employment, please put a ticket on the HR, Admin, and Payroll Portal: here

5 - Appraisal

Valuing Individuals and Performance (VIP)  is a new approach to managing and inspiring great performance. When it comes to recognising an employee's contribution, utilising talents, supporting goals and meeting development needs, it's clear that ongoing and regular conversations about performance matter.

The sections below include guidance and a feedback tool to support you in your approach to Valuing Individuals and Performance (VIP). 

Valuing Individuals Guidance

Appraisal Flowchart

Appraisal Flowchart - Operational Staff

VIP Summary Appraisal Form and Goal Setting Template - Operational 

VIP Summary Appraisal Form and Goal Setting Template - Corporate


360 Feedback


Obtaining feedback is a powerful way to help individuals reflect and understand the impact of their skills, knowledge and style. Individuals are encouraged to seek feedback regularly and informally from their peers, colleagues and service users. Feedback should be used to help individuals reflect on their strengths and development areas.

The document below is an optional tool that can be used to support VIP conversations or the VIP Summary Appraisal.

Feedback Document

Learning and Development Support

When VIP conversations take place, managers and individuals will inevitably consider any support needed to help the individual achieve goals.

Knowing what training and development is available and how to access it is key to ensuring that the support is achievable.  Details of how to access training events, courses, apprenticeships, learning resources and e-learning can be found in the document below:

Accessing learning and development support

Wellbeing Support

Managers and individuals are encouraged to discuss their wellbeing, resilience and worklife balance during VIP conversations.

The document below outlines the wellbeing initiatives and support available for employees.

Accessing Wellbeing Support

Team Theme Reflection

The team theme process allows team managers the opportunity to "feed up" feedback on their team's performance so that Senior Managers, Assistant Directors and DMTs can understand the strengths within the team and consider any appropriate actions needed to support emerging themes within services.  

The team theme form should be completed by managers once all VIP Summary Appraisals have been carried out.

Team Theme Summary

Making Conversations Count

The suite of VIP documents below are tools which can be used to support your VIP converations during 1-2-1s, supervisions and team meetings. They cover areas that are key to our Code of Ethics, competencies, behaviours and ways of working.

Managers and individuals are encouraged to use the tools that work for them and discuss the performance topics that are important to the delivery of their services.

The following VIP tools are intended to be used within 1-2-1s and supervisions to help focus performance discussions across the areas that are important to the delivery of the council plan and workforce plan. Managers and employees should consider what tools they will use throughout the year as some will be more relevant than others depending on the individual's role, aspirations and contribution to the organisation.

Conversation starters:

Identifying talents and strengths

Leadership and management skills and talents

Customer and community focused

Engagement feedback and communication

Innovation enterprise and efficiency

Managing resources and making things happen

Working together

Team Exercises

The exercises below are designed to encourage recognition amongst team members and help to identify and value the personal strengths and qualities of all team members.  The exercises help to identify how the team work together and reflect on how the team can collectively maximise their performance.

VIP Team Tool:

Part 1 identifying our strengths 

Part 2 high performing team

6 - Leaving Employment

This section is currently being reviewed by the People and Talent Team - if you have any queries, please get in touch with us asap.