Firefighter Recruitment - The Selection Process

When recruiting firefighters, we often get asked how the selection process works. Check out our handy guide on what to expect...

Stage 1: Online Application

This requires you to give personal information, including work experience, qualifications and supporting evidence for your application. To ensure fairness, managers shortlisting application forms do so without access to personal information.

You can watch a video on how to complete the application below.             

Stage 2: Online Assessment

If your application form is shortlisted, you will be invited to complete two on-line assessments which are designed to assess your suitability for the role of a Firefighter.

Stage 3: Functional Fitness Tests

Fitness tests include: Ladder climb, crawlspace, casualty evacuation, ladder lift, equipment carry, equipment assembly, ladder haul and treadmill test. You can view videos of the functional tests below.

 Stage 4: Assessment Centre

This is usually half a day in duration and consists of three to four exercises, with a combination of both group and individual exercises. Applicants are assessed against organisational values and key firefighter role competencies.

Stage 5: Numeracy & Literacy Skills.

If you have not provided proof of your English or maths qualifications with your application form, you will be asked to complete numeracy and literacy assessments as this stage of the process. 

Stage 6: Interview

You will be interviewed by a panel of senior officers and a representative from human resources.

Stage 7: Swimming Test & Pre-Employment Checks

This includes a minimum 50m swim unaided. This is to ensure applicants are confident and safe in water. This takes place in cold open water conditions wearing personal protective equipment.

This also includes a health screening and medical assessment, large goods vehicle (LGV) medical, enhanced disclosure barring service check and 2 x references.

Final Stage: Offered a place on a recruit course

If successful in the selection process, you will be offered a place as a Recruit Firefighter on a 15-week recruit course. At the end of this training course, you will pass out as a Firefighter in Development. You can watch an overview of the 15-week recruit course below.