Latest information about the Fire & Rescue Service’s most comprehensive behavioural assessment system for promotion.

Using the data to assess your organisation’s strengths and development areas

One of the things we are finding very useful from the CPG system is the information it can supply, particularly with consistent use over time. Examples of this are:

  • Comparisons in performance between different FRS’s.

  • Comparisons in performance across the different Leadership Qualities, and any differences in this at different levels.

  • Comparison over time between processes i.e. did last year’s Station Commander candidates perform better than this year’s?

  • Review of performance and feedback from candidates using VCA Ltd pre-assessment preparation materials.

This data can be used to inform organisational decisions. For instance, exploring why there is a consistent drop in one LQ within an FRS at all levels, and taking actions to improve this; examining why candidates from one FRS are consistently scoring differently from those from other Services; recognising if there is a particular LQ strength in one FRS, and how this can be fully utilised. This data can raise interesting questions, and be used practically to inform organisational development.

High-volume assessments

This spring we have completed 2 high volume projects:

  • Watch Manager roleplays – 49 candidates

  • Firefighter recruitment – 106 candidates

The Watch Manager assessment used the CPG system– an FRS-based roleplay facilitated via an on-line exercise and a telephone call.

The timetable allowed us to assess 49 candidates over 5 days, using 2 assessors. The results and developmental feedback reports were delivered the following week, allowing the client to move quickly on with the final interviewing stage of their process.

The scores were spread evenly with clear differentiation between candidates who met the required standard and those were demonstrating developmental needs at this time.

Graph showing results of 'I found the exercise interesting'
Graph showing results to the question - did you find the exercise challenging
Graph showing results of 'could you demonstrate skills'

The Firefighter Recruitment telephone roleplay. Candidates who had passed an initial sifting process and fitness testing were asked to attend the FRS venue and participate in this Leadership Quality assessment. Candidates had 20 minutes to prepare from material given to them prior to the exercise. They then received a phone call from one of our psychologists, in role as the candidate’s ‘supervisor’. The candidate presented information to their ‘supervisor’ and then responded to questions, total call time being up to 25 minutes.

The 106 candidates were assessed by a team of 5 psychologists over 5 days. Successful candidates will be invited to a final interview.

A link to a candidate feedback survey has been supplied to the client which will hopefully provide useful feedback from the candidates’ perspective. Analysis of the results data indicates a good level of consistency between the 2021 and 2019 results.

Next feature:

Taking the CPG in-house – using internal assessors
Assessing on-call and control room staff