As a Band 3 Inspector, you will be appointed to undertake a broad range of Infrastructure casework on some of the most complex applications across various consenting frameworks such as nationally significant infrastructure projects (NSIPs). Band 3 Inspectors may be asked to lead a panel where you will have overall responsibility of the examination. This will include leading and managing panel members confidently and with conviction, identifying and agreeing work areas of responsibility, mentoring and supporting panel members at a personal and professional level, managing the panel dynamics to ensure good and practical working relationships and ensuring work packages are delivered and things are kept to programme. Band 3 Inspectors can also be appointed as single inspectors to more complex and challenging cases on their own. You may also be appointed to other areas of infrastructure casework as for example permits and wayleaves in the field of energy and water resources and orders under the Transport and Works and Highway Acts which are currently done by way of either written reps Secretary of State (SoS) at the Department for Transport (DfT) or by inquiry run by the Inspectorate.
The Planning Inspectorate has a long and proud history in ensuring a fair planning system for England. The work we do has a significant impact on people’s lives, the communities where they live and the economy.
We want our colleagues to be able to work more flexibly and more collaboratively, exploring new and innovative ways to improve the way we provide services.
For further information on the Planning Inspectorate, please see the information pack attached on the 'Apply Now' link.
NSIPs are examined under the Planning Act 2008 in an inquisitorial manner, and it is a predominately written process, supplemented by hearings often with high media and political interest. The process is governed by statutory timescales requiring a report on the development consent order to be submitted to the relevant SoS usually at Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), DfT, Department for Levelling Up Housing and Communities (DLUHC) or Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). As panel lead, taking into account the views of other panel members, you will ultimately be responsible for recommending whether or not development consent should be granted and so maintaining momentum and pace throughout is a key component to ensuring applications are progressed efficiently and as quickly as possible. Where there is disagreement within a panel it is the lead member’s role to achieve resolution and ensure that a clear and robust recommendation is provided, making casting decisions as necessary.
We’re looking for people who can make impartial recommendations and decisions based on sound judgement and evidence and can communicate those decisions clearly – in writing and speaking. You will be able to thrive in an autonomous home-based environment, whilst being a team player working collaboratively with others. Band 3 Inspectors will need to have the experience and skills to lead panels of senior professionals and resilience to manage the most complex and controversial cases.
You will have the ability to be the lead member of a panel of fellow inspectors, supporting and challenging them as required. Your strong interpersonal skills will be fundamental as you lead and direct, often large and high-profile, public casework events sensitively but with authority. We are looking for motivated and inquisitive individuals, with the relevant skills and experience, combined with a genuine enthusiasm for the role.
Please open our candidate pack to find out more information and the job description.
- Full / Chartered membership of a professional body (see separate list) relevant to the work of an Inspector.
- Experience of working in at least one of the following areas of expertise: planning, relevant area of law, transport, engineering, relevant area of health, environmental impact assessment, heritage, design, energy, waste, water and waste water.
- Experience of a high level of personal responsibility for decision making based on evidence, relevant facts, tests, enquiries on complex matters
- Experience of complex project leadership including experience of leading others and managing to deadlines.
- Experience of influencing and negotiating involving different groups of stakeholders.
- Experience of ‘thinking on your feet’ to solve problems, and to encourage collaboration between parties, quickly and effectively using your own initiative.
- Significant experience of analysing large amounts of complex technical evidence in order to identify the issues on which you will need to focus your attention.
- Significant experience of writing clear, accurate and concise decisions/reports that reach logical, convincing, well-reasoned and evidence-based conclusions on a wide range of complex technical, legal and policy issues.
- Effective interpersonal and verbal communication skills, with significant experience of communicating with both technical and professional parties, the public and/or public bodies in a high-profile setting.
- A demonstrable ability to lead and actively manage casework events (inquiries and examinations) in which there are high levels of public interest and engagement.
- A demonstrable record of acquiring knowledge quickly, identifying and actively pursuing personal CPD training needs and maintaining and developing professional skills and capability.
- Confident in using digital technology and adapting to new technology in all aspects of your work.
- We will be holding two Question and Answer sessions on 12/09/2023 and 13/09/2023 at 12 noon. This provides you with the opportunity to speak to Planning Inspectors about their experience of working at the Planning Inspectorate. If you cannot make the dates, we will be happy to put you in touch with our colleagues. To take up this opportunity please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Membership of a relevant professional body (see separate list in candidate pack)
We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:
- Making Effective Decisions
- Communicating and Influencing
- Developing Self and Others
- Working Together
- Alongside your salary of £73,099, Planning Inspectorate contributes £20,395 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.
- Flexible working options, part-time and compressed hours.
- A working culture which encourages inclusion and diversity.
- 25 days annual leave increasing up to 30 days after 5 years, plus 1 privilege day to mark the King’s birthday. In addition to the normal bank holidays.
- Generous family friendly policies.
- Fast and modern IT kit which utilises Microsoft Office 10 and O365, enabling seamless working from home and collaboration across teams.
- For full information see our Benefits information pack on the 'Apply now' link
Things you need to know:
Selection process details - This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours, Strengths and Experience.
Application - Complete the online application form on Civil Service Jobs which requires the following information:
- A CV: The CV section is an opportunity for you to detail your career history. It should outline the jobs you have done, the length of time you were employed within each role and a brief description of your role, responsibilities and duties which demonstrate relevance to the role you are applying for against the essential criteria. You must type, or ‘copy and paste’ into the text box called ‘Employment History’ within the online application. You cannot attach a copy of your CV.
- A Personal Statement (1000 words max): The personal statement allows you to outline your suitability for the role in more depth, expanding on your CV evidence. It is an opportunity for you to provide evidence against the essential criteria listed within the candidate pack on the Person Specification page and link your answers to the listed Success Profile elements we are also assessing against .
We will assess your application on the evidence you have provided against the Essential Criteria and Success Profile elements detailed in the Person Specification in the candidate pack.
All shortlisted candidates will be advised of the outcome shortly afterwards.
Written test - If you are shortlisted you will be asked to write a report, details of the written test will be emailed to you on 3rd October 2023.
If you are shortlisted, you will:
- Be asked to attend an interview to have a more in-depth discussion about your experience and suitability for the role
- Interviews will be a blend of behaviour, strength and experience questions
- Need to prepare and deliver a presentation and provide a short written report prior to the interview.
- Candidates who are successful at shortlist stage will be sent full assessment requirements with their interview invitations.
Shortlist Date: 25th – 29th September 2023
Written report: by 17:00 on 11 October 2023
Interview Date: 12th – 20th October 2023
Interviews are currently being completed remotely using Microsoft Teams. We would like to reassure candidates that the virtual interview will not be recorded (or retained) within the Planning Inspectorate, other than usual interview protocol and in line with the Civil Service jobs Privacy notice.
We encourage all candidates to make themselves familiar with the role and what we will be assessing you against which is detailed in the Person Specification.
The Planning Inspectorate is committed to finding the right person for the job. We recruit using Success Profiles and consider the criteria you will need to demonstrate to be successful for the role, by doing this we are pushing up performance, diversifying our workforce and creating an inclusive culture.
ID and Documents
If specific qualifications/memberships are essential for the role and you are successful, you will be asked to provide accurate scanned or photographed images of the qualifications/memberships that you listed on your application prior to your start date.
We must check that any successful candidates are allowed to work for the Civil Service before we employ them. If successful, you will be asked to provide documents that show your Right to Work under Civil Service Nationality Rules and we must check the documents are valid with you present (either in person or over a video call).
Disability Confident Interview scheme
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. We run a Disability Confident Interview scheme for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria for the job.
To be considered for an interview under the scheme you must:
- have a disability defined by the Equality Act 2010
- provide evidence in your application that you meet the minimum criteria in the job description
- meet all of the qualifications, skills or experience defined as essential
While we will endeavour to provide you with all the appropriate information, you are the expert on your specific requirements so if you require any adjustments, you should consider the information provided about the assessment process in the candidate pack and then: Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. The earlier and more clearly you tell us what you need and why you need it, the more likely we are to be able to accommodate you in a timely fashion.
Existing Civil Servants should ensure that they have an in-principle agreement for a loan prior to applying.
Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.
- Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
- People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.
This job is broadly open to the following groups:
- nationals of the Republic of Ireland
- nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
- nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities with settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS) (opens in a new window)
- nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities who have made a valid application for settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
- individuals with limited leave to remain or indefinite leave to remain who were eligible to apply for EUSS on or before 31 December 2020
- Turkish nationals, and certain family members of Turkish nationals, who have accrued the right to work in the Civil Service
- Further information on nationality requirements (opens in a new window)
- Working for the Civil Service
- The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.
We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
- The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
- The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.
Apply and further information
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans initiative.
The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment.
Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.
Contact point for applicants
Job contact :
Name :Kay Sully
If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with the Principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should contact in the first instance: The Vacancy Manager via the Recruitment Team (PINS.Recruitment@planninginspectorate.gov.uk).
If you are not satisfied with the response you receive you should then contact, Head of HR, via the Recruitment Team (PINS.Recruitment@planninginspectorate.gov.uk).
If you are still not satisfied with the response you receive from the Planning Inspectorate, you can contact the Office of the Civil Service Commission.