Job Applicant Privacy Notice

Data controller: Ashford Borough Council

Data Protection Officer: Charlotte Hammersley – Compliance & Data Protection Manager

As part of any recruitment process, the organisation collects and processes personal data relating to job applicants. The organisation is committed to being transparent about how it collects and uses that data and to meeting its data protection obligations.

What information does the organisation collect?

The organisation collects a range of information about you, including:

  • your name, date of birth, address and contact details, including email address and telephone number;
  • details of your qualifications, skills, experience and employment history;
  • information about your current level of remuneration, including benefit entitlements;
  • whether or not you have a disability for which the organisation needs to make reasonable adjustments during the recruitment process;
  • information about your ability to drive;
  • information about your entitlement to work in the UK; and
  • equal opportunities monitoring information, including information about your ethnic origin, sexual orientation, health and religion or belief

The organisation collects this information in a variety of way. For example, data might be contained in application forms, obtained from your passport or other identity documents, or collected through interviews or other forms of assessment, including online tests.

The organisation will also collect personal data about you from third parties, such as references supplied by former employees, information from employment background check providers and information from criminal records checks. The organisation will seek information from third parties only once a job offer to you has been made and will inform you that it is doing so. Should we wish to contact your references prior to you receiving a job offer we will only do so with your prior consent. Data will be stored in a range of different places, including on your application record, in HR management systems and on other IT systems (including email).

Why does the organisation process personal data?

The organisation needs to process data to take steps at your request prior to entering into a contract with you. It also needs to process your data to enter into a contract with you.

In some cases, the organisation needs to process data to ensure that it is complying with its legal obligations. For example, it is required to check a successful applicant's eligibility to work in the UK before employment starts. 

Processing data from job applicants allows the organisation to manage the recruitment process, assess and confirm a candidate's suitability for employment and decide to whom to offer a job. The organisation may also need to process data from job applicants to respond to and defend against legal claims.

The organisation processes health information if it needs to make reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process for candidates who have a disability. This is to carry out its obligations and exercise specific rights in relation to employment. 

Where the organisation processes other special categories of data, such as information about ethnic origin, sexual orientation, health or religion or belief, this is for equal opportunities monitoring purposes.

For some roles, the organisation is obliged to seek information about criminal convictions and offences. Where the organisation seeks this information, it does so because it is necessary for it to carry out its obligations and exercise specific rights in relation to employment. 

The organisation will not use your data for any purpose other than for recruitment exercises for the post that you have applied for, or posts that are similar to the post which you have applied for. If your application is unsuccessful, the organisation will keep your personal data on file for up to six months in case there are future employment opportunities for which you may be suited (as assessed during the initial selection process).

Who has access to data?

Your information will be shared internally for the purposes of the recruitment exercise. This includes members of the HR and recruitment team, interviewers involved in the recruitment process, managers in the business area with a vacancy and IT staff if access to the data is necessary for the performance of their roles.

The organisation will not share your data with third parties, unless your application for employment is successful and it makes you an offer of employment. The organisation will then share your data with former employers to obtain references for you, employment background check providers to obtain necessary background checks and, if required, the Disclosure and Barring Service to obtain necessary criminal records checks. 

The organisation will not transfer your data outside the European Economic Area.

How does the organisation protect data?

The organisation takes the security of your data seriously. It has internal policies and controls in place to ensure that your data is not lost, accidentally destroyed, misused or disclosed, and is not accessed except by our employees in the proper performance of  their duties. Further details can be found in the Transparency section of our website.

For how long does the organisation keep data?

If your application for employment is unsuccessful, the organisation will hold your data on file for six months after the end of the relevant recruitment process. At the end of the period, your data is deleted or destroyed.

If your application for employment is successful, personal data gathered during the recruitment process will be transferred to your personnel file and retained during your employment. The periods for which your data will be held will be provided to you in a new privacy notice.

Your rights

As a data subject, you have a number of rights. You can:

  • access and obtain a copy of your data on request;
  • require the organisation to change incorrect or incomplete data;
  • require the organisation to delete or stop processing your data, for example where the data is no longer necessary for the purposes of processing;
  • object to the processing of your data where the organisation is relying on its legitimate interests as the legal ground for processing; and
  • ask the organisation to stop processing your data for a period if data is inaccurate or there is a dispute about whether or not your interests override the organisation's legitimate grounds for processing data

If you would like to exercise any of these rights, please contact Charlotte Hammersley, Compliance and Data Protection Manager. You can make a subject access request by completing the organisation's form for completing a subject access request – job applicant. Further details can be found in the Transparency section of our website.

If you believe that the organisation has not complied with your data protection rights, you can complain to the Information Commissioner. 

What if you do not provide personal data?

You are under no statutory or contractual obligation to provide data to the organisation during the recruitment process. However, if you do not provide the information, the organisation may not be able to process your application properly or at all.

Automated decision-making

Some of the organisation's recruitment processes are based solely on automated decision-making, this includes the screening questions. The screening questions seek to gather data on core employment requirements e.g. eligibility to work in the UK and full clean driving licence. If an applicant is not able to demonstrate they fulfil such a core requirement their application will automatically not be processes any further and will therefore be unsuccessful.