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APPLY NOW. Applications close 31 October 2022

Our recruitment process is designed to assess your strengths. It’s not about what you’ve studied, the university you went to or the work experience you might have done. We’re interested in finding out your potential to become a future NHS leader.  

Recruitment process

Application form
Complete by 31 October 2022 23.59.  This takes approximately 40 mins and if everything looks good, we’ll invite you to stage 1 of the assessment process, which you can start straight away. 

Stage 1 Online assessment
The strengths-based online assessment will take you approximately 40 mins to complete – although it’s not time limited. This will help you learn more about the work you’d be doing on the Scheme.

If you are successful, you’ll be invited to the next stage.  Stage 1 must be completed by 7 November 23.59, so the earlier you apply, the more time you’ll have to complete the assessments.  All candidates will receive a feedback report. 

Stage 2 Work-based scenarios
You can take this assessment as soon as you’ve been notified of success at stage 1. This stage will include video responses, giving you a great opportunity to show us more about you as an individual. This assessment will take approximately 60 mins to complete.  Some of the video-based questions will be timed, but you should have plenty of time to provide your answers.  You’ll be able to warm up with a practice question first.  

Stage 2 must be completed by 14 November 23.59. All candidates will receive a feedback report at this stage.  Successful candidates will be invited to the Virtual Assessment Centre. 

Stage 3 Virtual Assessment Centre (VAC)
During this half-day virtual assessment, we’ll ask you to complete several different and engaging strengths-based exercises.  You’ll get to meet some of our current graduates and other NHS staff, and as with the earlier online assessments, you’ll be encouraged to just be yourself.  We’ll provide a feedback report after this stage, regardless of the outcome.

VACs will start mid-January 2023 and run until end-February 2023. 

The process where we match candidates who have passed their VAC to available placements.  This is not part of the assessment, the VAC is the final assessment stage for candidates. During allocation, we consider assessment scores and preferences of hundreds of candidates who have passed the VAC and compare these with the placement roles offered by NHS employers.​

Offer and onboarding
Candidates who have passed the VAC and been successfully matched with a placement are offered an NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme (GMTS) place.  The process of employment checks begins.  New trainees begin our onboarding process, to prepare them to start GMTS in September 2023.  ​

Reasonable adjustment and assessor training

Reasonable Adjustment
Disclosure is a very personal decision, but we think it’s really important to let us know if you need any reasonable adjustment during the selection process.  Privacy is paramount, so we do not push for details that you may not want to divulge.  We just need enough information to confirm what adjustments need to be put in place.  We will also ask if the medical condition is something our Assessment Centre team need to be aware of, to provide additional support if the need arises. Ultimately, it’s all down to what you feel comfortable with.

Fair assessment
We make sure that our assessors are trained and regularly assessed themselves, to ensure a fair and inclusive experience for all candidates.  For example, our Virtual Assessment Centre assessors undergo a training session which includes techniques to recognise and avoid unconscious bias.  We also offer opportunities for assessors to observe a session before they assess candidates, to better support them, address any issues and provide feedback to improve. 

Assessment preparation

You can visit the Preparation Hub of our assessment partner, Cappfinity, for more information about Strengths-based assessment. 

The Hub has links to practice assessments, where you can practice answering questions that are similar in style to some you will face in our assessment.  These questions are not identical in type or content to those in the assessment.  You are therefore not expected or required to visit the Preparation Hub, but it might help you familiarise yourself with the style of questions.

Cappfinity Preparation Hub

Cappfinity platform FAQs including technical information and device requirements                                                                                                                 

Entry requirements

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Check you meet our entry requirements before starting your application.

NHS employees

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The Scheme is open to current NHS employees, known as ‘in-service’ trainees.

Specialism Selector

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Wondering which of our Scheme specialisms is right for you?

Try our Specialism Selector tool. It’ll ask you questions about your interests, work preferences – and the aspects of a career in NHS leadership you are attracted to.

We’ll suggest two specialisms that might be a good fit for you. The tool is for guidance only – you can apply to any specialism you’re eligible for. 


Any queries or concerns relating to your application can be sent to our assessment team

I can’t find the answer to my question here. Can I contact you?  

Yes. Please email

Alert: Applications open 26 September 2022