The Recruitment Process

GMFRS has a thorough recruitment process to make sure we employ the best candidates for the job. 

The information below outlines the 11 steps in our Firefighter recruitment process. You'll need to pass each step to move on to the next. 

Diagram outlining the recruitment steps as described on this page

Step 1: Expression of Interest

Let us know you are interested in becoming a Firefighter on the Greater.Jobs website. We will keep your details on our database and contact you with updates, information and details of Taster Days. From submitting your expression of interest, it can take around six months to complete all the steps and receive a job offer. 

Expression of interest form on Greater.Jobs

Step 2: Virtual Taster Day

Our Virtual Taster Days will be conducted via an online meeting. You’ll receive information on functional skills and physical tests involved in the recruitment process. You’ll learn about the Apprenticeship Standard and what you can expect from your apprenticeship.

A member of the recruitment team will also go through the whole recruitment process with you. It’s a chance to learn what is expected throughout the recruitment process and get hints and tips to help you prepare.

GMFRS Wholetime Firefighter Recruitment Information pack

See what’s involved in the fitness tests 

Step 3: Application Form

This is the formal application form which gives you a chance to tell us about you, your education and employment history as well as the skills, values and behaviours you have that will make you an asset to GMFRS.

Step 4: Behavioural and Situational Judgement Test

The Situational Judgement Test is an online assessment which will enable you to showcase your skills, values and behaviours, without needing to complete a number of long and complex application questions. It will form one of the first stages of the selection process.

Step 5: Bleep Test 

If you are successfully shortlisted, you will be invited to take part in a 20 metre bleep test. The minimum pass mark is level 8.8.

Step 6: Functional Skills Test

You’ll then sit a Maths and English assessment, known as the functional skills test. The minimum pass mark for both assessments is Level 1.

You will only have one attempt at each test so you need to pass first time to continue the recruitment process.

Step 7: National Firefighter Selection Test

The National Firefighter Selection Test is a series of physical tests, which you have to pass first time. On the day, you’ll be briefed on what to expect, including all health and safety information. You’ll be given personal protective equipment (PPE), a numbered bib and a scorecard.

These tests may include:

  • Ladder Lift
  • Ladder Climb
  • BA Crawl
  • Casualty Evacuation
  • Manual Dexterity
  • Equipment Carry

Find out more about these tests 

Step 8: Virtual Assessment Centre

The assessment centre will consist of different competency based interviews with both operational and non-operational assessors.

The interviews are completed pod style. Each pod will have at least two assessors in and you’ll be asked a different question in each pod. You’ll have 10 minutes per pod to answer the question. You’ll move round each pod until you have completed all questions.

We use a range of assessment methods. We’ll let you know which methods you’ll have to take part in when you receive your invitation to the assessment centre. You could be asked to take part in:

  • Role play assessment
  • Structured interview
  • Presentation
  • Group exercise

Step 9: Classroom Based Functional Skills 

This is the second of two functional skills tests. It is a classroom-based assessment with GMFRS invigilators. The results you get on this test will be compared to your initial functional test scores. You must score within 10% of your initial functional skills test to move on to the next step.

Step 10: Offers of employment and pre-employment checks

If you have been successful in our shortlisting and assessment process, we will make you a conditional offer of employment. We will carry out the following checks:

  • medical (vision, lung function, blood pressure, body mass index)
  • Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check
  • employment references covering five years of work history
  • right to work in the UK

Step 11: Wholetime Firefighter Training Course

The Wholetime Firefighter initial training course will consist of both theoretical and practical learning over 16 weeks. This training will be the start of your Firefighter apprenticeship, working through a series of modules including:

  • pumps and ladders
  • road traffic collisions
  • trauma care
  • hazardous materials
  • specialist rescue
  • breathing apparatus and fire behaviour

GMFRS Wholetime Firefighter Recruitment Information pack

Frequently asked questions

If you have any more questions about becoming a firefighter, please contact us at joinus@manchesterfire.gov.uk

Submit your expression of interest