The selection process

Aboriginal representation on the selection panel is essential for recruitment to Aboriginal identified and Aboriginal targeted positions.


‚ÄčAboriginal representation on the selection panel

  • The size and membership of the panel will vary depending on the scope and nature of the position to be filled
  • The panel must have two members as a minimum, one of whom is the designated convenor
  • There must be at least one female and one male on the panel
  • There is no reason additional members cannot be included for Aboriginal-specific recruitment. There may be a need for local discussions regarding age-matching and cultural affiliation, particularly in light of the younger age profile for Aboriginal communities. For example, the median age of an Aboriginal person is 21 years, compared to 37 years for non-Aboriginal Australians.
  • For Aboriginal identified and targeted positions, the panel must include an Aboriginal person
  • For positions that Aboriginal applicants apply for, an Aboriginal person should be considered for inclusion on the panel as the independent
  • Experienced selection panel members can be drawn from Aboriginal employees working within NSW Health

Prior to finalising the composition of your chosen selection panel, it is advisable to seek advice from human resources or the local Manager of Aboriginal Workforce Development.

reminder Reminder

It's important that when looking to include an Aboriginal person on the selection panel you consider their suitability to the specific scope and nature of the position:

  • Selecting the same Aboriginal representatives on all or most selection panels does not demonstrate matching to the specific job requirements
  • Similarly, selecting a staff member or representative who identifies as an Aboriginal person does not automatically mean that they are suitable or appropriate for your specific selection panel

Changes to selection panels

reminder Reminder

Selection panels have changed over the past few years. The provision that one panel member must be 'independent' can often be misinterpreted by Aboriginal community members and staff. This is because past processes at NSW Health indicated that an Aboriginal community representative fulfilled the independent function.

Conflict of interest

There may sometimes be history, family business, or other issues that arise during the selection process and potentially constitute a conflict of interest between a panel member and applicant.

It is the responsibility of the panel member/s to declare any real or potential conflict of interest as soon as they become aware of it. Applicants are also able to raise potential conflicts of interest.

Many people in the Aboriginal community and the health sector have family connection. This is not necessarily a conflict of interest.

Each situation needs to be judged on its merits, and advice sought from human resources or your local Aboriginal Manager of Workforce Development if there are concerns.

It is the responsibility of the panel convenor or the contact person in the job advertisement to ensure any potential conflicts of interests are raised, managed and documented.

Recruitment policy and procedure

Ensure that you are complying with the relevant policies governing the recruitment and selection process:

Guidance and advice on the recruitment process is available from human resources.

Nicola's story

Nicola was an experienced health manager with many contacts in the local Aboriginal community. She was often asked to recommend selection panel members but had begun to hear murmurs amongst colleagues that she was 'playing favourites' in her recommendations.

Read more

Assessing applicants

It's the role of the selection panel to choose the most suitable candidate for the advertised position through the collection, comparison and analysis of a variety of information sources, including the results of assessments.

Read more

Government Sector Employment Act

View the Government Sector Employment Act (2013)

Public Service Commission Recruitment and Selection Guide

View the Public Service Commission Recruitment and Selection Guide.

Recruitment and Selection of staff to the NSW Health Service (PD)

For more information on the recruitment process that applies to jobs within the NSW Public Health System.