All the information you need before your application
If you are looking for a role which can fit around your lifestyle, a role in which you will learn new skills and become part of a community that tests your physical capabilities; becoming one of our On-Call firefighters could be for you!
As well as training you to become a professional firefighter, joining our On-Call team will open the door to a host of other fire service opportunities.
The experience and skills you gain will prepare you for becoming a Wholetime Firefighter if you are interested in that career path or open other opportunities within the Service to you, such as Co-responding and Bank Shift working, or upskilling to Crew Commander.
On-Call firefighters come from all walks of life but the one thing they all have in common is the desire to give back to their community.
Are you the right candidate
To apply to become an On-Call firefighter you must be:
- At least 18-years-old by the start date (there is no upper age limit).
- A UK/EU citizen or a permanent resident of the UK without any work restrictions.
- In possession of a full UK or EU (European Union) manual driving licence.
- Willing to get an LGV driving license within 18 months of joining.
- Prepared to be clean shaven, so you can safely wear breathing apparatus while fighting fires.
- Free from any unspent criminal convictions.
You do not need any qualifications to become an On-Call firefighter.
What else you will bring
Other than good fitness levels, the diverse role of an On-Call firefighter means we are looking for people with the following skills and personal qualities:
- A can-do attitude.
- A keen interest in the fire and rescue service.
- A willingness to learn.
- Excellent communication skills, with the confidence to communicate with a range of people.
- Collaborative working in a team environment.
- Ability to achieve a good level of physical fitness.
- The ability to follow instructions.
- The ability to think about the bigger picture in a dynamic and challenging environment.
As an On-Call firefighter you will receive a retainer fee, a disturbance fee of £4.77 and, if you are called to an incident, an hourly rate.
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You will also get a monthly mobile phone allowance of £6.60. Your retainer fee will differ depending on which contract option you are on, and your firefighter competence level.
Other benefits include:
- Employee Assistance Programme.
- Cycle to work scheme.
- Onsite gyms.
- The opportunity to give back to your community.
As an On-Call firefighter you could be called out two or three times a week, for a few hours at a time. The types of incidents you may be called to attend include traffic collisions, fires, and rescues from a variety of situations.
The hours you will work will be based around your availability and other commitments.
Offering available hours
You will need to commit to a guaranteed level of first-line availability. This means you will need to be contactable (normally through a phone app) and committed to remaining within an agreed area for an immediate response, during the time you have committed to.
You can also commit to second, third, and fourth-line availability.
The amount of cover you commit to provide, as an On-Call firefighter, is flexible and we will work with you to make sure your available hours work for both you and the Service. Contracts start from 40 hours of first-line availability a week, but we are happy to discuss reduced availability contracts for key stations at key times.
There are six steps in our selection processes. The complete process can take around six months. Here is what you can except.
- Step one: Attend an On-Call awareness session. This session provides details on what the role involves, the skills we are looking for and the application process. You can also talk to our On-Call team and ask any questions you might have at one of our Have a Go sessions or community engagement events. Click here to visit our event page where you can book onto an awareness evening or Have A Go event.
- Step two: Online application
- Step Three: On-line tests. You will be sent a link to two online tests designed to assess your maths and English skills. These must be completed at home and will be verified later in the application process.
- Step four: Role-related physical tests. You will be invited to take part in several physical tests. View our Firefighter fit guide here.
- Step Five: Interview. If you pass the written and physical tests you will be invited to an interview.
- Step Six: Occupational health medical. If your interview goes well, you will be invited for an occupational health medical to determine if you are medically fit to perform the role.
Our On-Call response model
We need the right number of people with the right skills at the right place at the right time. Our On-call team help us to achieve this through our response model. Our response model provides us with the capacity to respond to emergency incidents of varying types and durations. This resilient approach ensures we maintain the number of front-line appliances available where possible, while ensuring we have reserve resources for dealing with periods of high demand.
We use the terms “availability” and “cover” in place of hours that a Firefighter is available to work for us if required.
Hear what it is like first hand to be On-Call
The different lines of availability
There are various ways in which you can provide us with availability. We might need On-Call firefighters to be immediately available to respond to emergencies. This will primarily be from their local fire station. We call this: First line availability
You will need to provide response from your nearest fire station, immediately, or within 10 minutes. You could also provide agreed cover at an alternative location on a delayed response. For example, to relieve a crew from long job.
To service this need we have three further lines of availability:
Second line availability
Provide response from your nearest fire station within 20 mins.
Third line availability
Provide response from any fire station (inc. work or home) within 60 mins.
Fourth line availability
Provide a response to any fire station within three hours.
Check which stations you can respond from:
Enter your postcode to find out which fire stations you can respond from within the different lines of availability.
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