Recruitment process

We operate a rigorous recruitment programme that takes place over several months.

Candidates are assessed on a range of attributes through both written and practical tests, thorough background checks and an interview stage. The process is designed to ensure that we recruit the best candidates.

Initial information

Firstly we will ask you to provide us with your personal details and any other information we may need for monitoring purposes.

A full driving licence is essential to become a Wholetime Firefighter.

Psychometric tests

As has become standard practice with many recruitment programmes, we use online psychometric testing in order to gauge whether a candidate has the aptitudes we require. In our case, we assess candidates on numerical ability, verbal reasoning, problem-solving and risk assessment.

The tests are as follows:

Situational judgement test

The situational judgement test presents you with a number of hypothetical scenarios of the type you are likely to encounter as a firefighter and requires you to select the response, out of a number of possible answers, which you think would be the best course of action to take.

Verbal reasoning

This is a timed, multiple-choice test which will assess your ability to process written information.


The numerical test is designed to assess your ability to make basic numerical calculations and is timed and multiple choice. The questions involve interpreting numerical data from tables and graphs.

Dependability and safety instrument

This test is designed to assess your ability to calculate the degree of risk involved in a situation. The risk assessment test is multiple choice but is not timed.

The assessments are administered by SHL.

Values Based Assessments

This process will allow the Service to explore and measure an individual’s values and behaviours against those identified by WFRS, Warwickshire County Council , the National Chiefs Council and the Core Code of Ethics. The assessment requires the candidate to participate in two of the three behavioural and value-based assessment activities: 

  • Group Physical –the group (6 individuals) will try and solve a physical problem with a set time frame (45 minutes) 
  • Group Discussion – the group (6 individuals) are presented with a topic for discussion and are then injected with specific questions. The set time frame is 45 minutes. 
  • Group Presentation – the group (6 individuals) are given a topic on which to base a presentation. This will require individuals to present an equal share to the panel. The group will be given a set time frame (35 minutes) to discuss and create the presentation, along with a set period for the presentation itself (10 minutes).

Declaration of unspent criminal convictions

At this stage, we will require you to declare whether you have any unspent convictions. Having a criminal record will not necessarily prevent you from working for us. If you have a conviction the service will undertake a risk assessment to consider the nature, relevance to the role of a firefighter, the sentence, patterns of offending and the length of time since the offence.

We will also ask you to complete an occupational health questionnaire. The information will then be reviewed and a judgement will be taken as to whether there are health issues that may affect your ability to do the job.

Practical selection tests

In order to ensure that you are able to handle fire service equipment, you will undertake a series of tests that will assess: your ability to work at heights, your manual dexterity, ability to combine your upper and lower body strength and your coordination.


During the interview, you will be asked questions about your experience and skills. The answers you give will be used to determine your suitability for the role. The interview will also be an opportunity for you to ask any questions you might have about working for Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Pre-employment checks

If you are successful in all the previous stages, we will then make a conditional offer that is subject to several pre-employment checks. Once these checks are complete we will be in a position to confirm an offer of employment.