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Four new sector Best Practice ‘toolkits’ introduced by NFCC

31 May 2022

THROUGH ITS People Programme, the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) has launched four new toolkits specifically designed to support Fire and Rescue Services in the selection, recruitment, nurturing and growth of diverse talent.

The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Hub, the Recruitment Hub, the Talent Management Toolkit and, last but not least, the Coaching and Mentoring Portal are the culmination of months of diligent hard work conducted by NFCC project teams and colleagues from across the sector.

Each toolkit ‘champions’ Best Practice processes, showcasing sector-endorsed guidance to provide a consistent approach at a national level.

The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Hub contains a wealth of resources to help Fire and Rescue Services ensure that equality, diversity and inclusion are part of everything they do.

Designed in consultation with external professional organisations, the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Hub delivers a range of information about different groups of people and ideas around the actions which Fire and Rescue Services could take to make a positive difference to them. Toolkits provide further advice to Fire and Rescue Services and are also included as part of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Hub.

The NFCC’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion project manager Aidan Bartley commented: “Equality, diversity and inclusion are top priorities for the NFCC. This project delivers a hub of guidance and tools that have been developed for the sector, by the sector. While there’s more work to do to embed the learning, these tools will help to increase awareness for the benefit of all Fire and Rescue Service staff and the communities they serve.”

Centralised resource

The Recruitment Hub is a centralised resource for colleagues seeking and bringing in diverse talent. Collaborative in nature, the Recruitment Hub provides the basis for a more unified national approach towards recruitment for the sector and is designed to complement a modern UK Fire and Rescue Service.

The Recruitment Hub offers a comprehensive collection of information, guidance, Best Practice and tools to support a given Fire and Rescue Service in developing its own bespoke selection and recruitment approach.  

The NFCC’s Recruitment Hub project manager Gaia Alexander explained to Fire Safety Matters: “A review of the wholetime recruitment process back in April 2019 identified that, nationally, there were differing approaches taken towards selection and recruitment across the sector. The Recruitment Hub is designed to provide a solution. Duly offering an array of information and guidance in a simple-to-use format that ensures consistency for the candidate’s journey.”

Talent management

The Talent Management Toolkit has been developed to provide support to Fire and Rescue Services around the key areas of identifying, attracting, engaging, developing, retaining and evaluating talent.

The Talent Management Toolkit dovetails with the national Talent Management Model Policy and Talent Management Maturity Model, forming the Talent Management Framework.

For its part, the Coaching and Mentoring Portal allows a continuation of learning and connects individuals with coaches and mentors from within the sector. Connecting with other mentors from other Fire and Rescue Services delivers a wider base of experience and can help to identify good practices, as well as an independent place in which to share personal goals or objectives.

Jane Cork, the NFCC’s talent management and coaching and mentoring project manager, stated: “Both of these toolkits will enhance the development of our people in helping to support and nurture their growth and continuous learning. We are extremely grateful for the support received from Fire and Rescue Services who helped to shape these products during their development. Already, 31 Fire and Rescue Services have nominated champions, mentors and qualified coaches to sign-up to the Coaching and Mentoring Portal.”

The new toolkits have been developed in response to national recommendations made within the Fire and Rescue National Framework and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services’ State of Fire and Rescue Report and are supported by the NFCC’s own People Strategy.

People Programme executive Ann Millington noted: “I’m immensely proud of the work transacted by members of the People Programme in conjunction with Fire and Rescue Services, and the resulting four products. These products signal another significant leap forward by the NFCC in supporting those already working within, and those yet to join, this exciting and dynamic sector.”