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T&C's of employment

Terms and conditions of employment

Hours of work

A flexible working hours system operates within the office. The contracted hours of employment are 148 during a four week accounting period, which translates into 37 hours per week Monday to Friday.


Overtime can be payable for work undertaken at weekends and bank holidays’. For Director jobs they can probably expect to do some weekend work without claiming for it all the time.

Paid holidays

You will be entitled to a total of 25 days paid holidays per year. Your personal holiday year runs from the first day of the month in which your birthday falls.

Your entitlement to annual leave increases with your length of service. After three years’ service you will become entitled to 28 days annual leave, and after five years your entitlement will be 30 days annual leave.

Public and privilege holidays

There are 8 public holidays each year. In addition to these days there are 3 privilege holidays each year, which are taken between the Christmas and New Year period. There may be regional variations to public and privilege holidays.

Flexi leave

Under the flexible workings hours arrangements staff accrue entitlement to flexi leave at a rate of 2 days per four week accounting period. Over 13 accounting periods in a year they can take up to 26 days flexi leave.

Providing that they have accrued enough additional hours, above the standard contracted hours, staff may take up to three days flexi leave in a four week accounting period.


Your appointment is pensionable from the outset. Although ICO staff are not civil servants, they are entitled to join the civil service pension scheme. Unless you have been a member of the civil service pension scheme before, you will be able to choose between two civil service pension arrangements:

Alpha. This is an occupational defined benefit pension scheme. It provides a way of saving for your retirement. Over the years you and the ICO both make contributions to the scheme.

The current member contribution rate for this level of post is 7.35% of salary. Employee contribution rates are assessed periodically and may be subject to change.

The ICO will also make employer contributions which will be either 27.9% or 30.3% of salary for these posts.

Partnership pension account. This is a stakeholder pension with a contribution from the ICO. How much we pay is based on your age. We pay this regardless of whether you choose to contribute anything. You do not have to contribute but, if you do, we will also match your contributions up to 3% of your pensionable earnings. The contributions are in addition to the age-related contribution mentioned above.

You may also choose not to enter either of the pension schemes.

N.b if you have been a member of the civil service pension scheme in the past you may be able to re-join one of the older scheme arrangements. You should speak with human resources if you have any queries.


There is no normal or maximum retirement age. You may continue to work as long as you wish and decide when you want to retire. You must, however, continue to meet the normal standards of health, efficiency, conduct, performance and attendance.

You can retire and draw your pension in line with the pension age applicable to your civil service pension scheme arrangements. Pension age is usually 60 for members of Classic, Classic Plus or Premium, 65 for members of NUVOS, and is matched to the state pension age for members of alpha. It is possible to retire and draw a pension earlier than these ages, though your pension will be reduced.

Evidence of health

Offers of appointment are made subject to a satisfactory declaration of health.

Before appointment is confirmed you will be asked to complete an on-line medical questionnaire from our occupational health provider. Occupational health will either confirm your fitness to work or may require a further assessment by an occupational health physician.

Security Checks

The Information Commissioner is under a duty to protect the information and material she holds. This obligation extends to her employees and agents, therefore, prior to confirmation of any provisional offer of employment you will be asked to complete a criminal declaration form.

Your criminal record declaration may be subject to verification. If you are discovered to have lied or withheld information regarding unspent criminal convictions you may be debarred from the recruitment process, have your offer of employment withdrawn or you may be dismissed. The action taken will depend on the stage at which the verification process is completed.

In addition to this all new staff are required to provide proof of identity and nationality on or before their first day of employment. If acceptable evidence is not provided then you will not be allowed access to the premises and so the appointment cannot commence.

In some of our roles you may have access to protectively marked information up to the classification of ‘secret’. If that is the case you will need to undertake a ‘Security Clearance’ or ‘Developed Vetting’ level of security check which includes extensive background checks. Details of the level of security check for each role will be provided in its job description. Such checks will be carried out by in accordance with HM Government’s vetting policy.

Evidence of qualifications

Offers of appointment are made on the basis of information provided in your written application and at interview. If offered an appointment you will be asked to provide evidence of all relevant qualifications attained as indicated in your application.

Evidence of identity

All newly appointed staff are required to provide proof of their identity before they can start work with the ICO. Documents for successful candidates will be checked and copies taken before employment begins, these documents will be kept on your employment file.

Evidence of right to work in the UK

The Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 requires every employer to check that an employee has the right to work in the UK before their employment begins. Offers of employment will be made subject to you providing satisfactory evidence of this. Employment will not be confirmed until this has been provided. Documents for successful candidates will be checked and copies taken before employment begins, these documents will be kept on your employment file.

References and due dilligence

Shortlisted candidates will be required to provide two referees. At least one reference must be from your current or most recent employer. Personal references are not acceptable. The ICO reserves the right to request additional references.

Please contact hays executive with any questions regarding the referencing or due diligence process.

Probationary period

You will have a six month probationary period, in which you will receive reviews at six, weeks, 12 weeks and six months. Your continued employment at the ICO is subject to the satisfactory completion of your probationary period, which may be extended if your performance has not been satisfactory, or if the key competencies required for the job have not been fully assessed in the initial six month period.