GDPR and safer recruitment – time to tweak your approach


The water has been muddied on this recently, specifically about when in the recruitment process we can ask for conviction information.  Let us clear it up for you.

So, can you ask for criminal convictions as part of the recruitment process?  The short answer is yes.  As with anything GDPR, the issue will always be the when and the why.  We know the why – making sure we only recruit into education those who are suitable to work in the sector.  The when needs a little more thought.

Historically we have asked for conviction information as part of the application form.  In the new GDPR world, asking at this point is too soon – we don’t need to see the criminal history of all applicants, only those that we shortlist for the role.

All you need to do now is tweak your application form to remove questions about criminal convictions and specify that if the applicant is shortlisted, their suitability to work with children will be explored and this will include disclosing convictions.

Schools, academies and trusts should review their recruitment processes to ensure that special category (sensitive) data is requested at the appropriate time.

Find out more about our GDPR toolkit for schools and our dedicated DPO helpline:

Dai Durbridge

t    +44 (0)330 045 2105
m  +44 (0)7920 257159

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