Civil Service Faststream Watch

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gt94sss2
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#561
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#561
(Original post by john_713)
I think this has already been answered before but I just want to be certain, Im going into my third year this october and graduating in June, does that mean I should apply this september? I'm confused because obviously the entry requirements say 2.2 but i wont know my final grade by this september?
Yes, this autumn will be the first opportunity for you to apply and if successful, you would probably start working in September/October 2009

You would be asked to confirm your degree result etc, before you started working.
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moley
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#562
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#562
(Original post by trina)
I was just wondering whether people's general experience was that once they got assigned a department, they heard from it very quickly? I got assigned the Department for Transport 2 weeks ago and have heard nothing from them. Am wondering whether this means that I won't be starting with them for a while even though I already know that I will be working for them. I'm emailing them about it as obviously it would be useful to know how much time I have before I start working, but I jusy wondered whether other people were in similar positions.
I received an email from my department a week after I was assigned, and I had a meeting a week after that. A email summarising the meeting and confirming the offer of a place was sent the same evening.
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tnj
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#563
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#563
Bit of a non sequitur but i have to vent my frustration! I still haven't heard!

Question: if they need to assign a mix of scores, ages, genders and experience to each department, does this mean they make a compatible group and send that to the dept (in which case it does not really matter what your score was in terms of how quickly you get assigned) OR does it mean that they work from the top assigning people quite quickly at first and then slower and slower as they try to tesselate the remainder, ie needing to satisfy their mix criteria?

The former theory would suggest that departments already mentioned on here as having assigned people (BERR, Home Office, DfT, MoD, HMRC ... any others?) would have filled all their places and therefore i can assume I am going to a different department.

The latter theory would suggest that those assigned so far have higher FSAC scores than me (I would not be surprised!)

Anyone care to speculate?!
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starry skies
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#564
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#564
(Original post by tnj)



The former theory would suggest that departments already mentioned on here as having assigned people (BERR, Home Office, DfT, MoD, HMRC ... any others?) would have filled all their places and therefore i can assume I am going to a different department.



Anyone care to speculate?!
I know Chinachina got offered Home Office back in April (IIRC) after the results for FSAC came out. I went via FSB1 for the FCO before landing up in Central Departments and waited about a month after sending in the FAFF before finding anything out, so that seems to suggest to me that vacancies come up throughout the assignments period and are filled on the various criteria you've already mentioned, including FSAC score.
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gt94sss2
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#565
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#565
(Original post by JWeather)
For everyone's info: I sent them another e-mail yesterday because they had told me at the beginning of June that they had expected to give me 'firm news' by the beginning of July. They've said that there was a serious delay with the diplomatic service results and that, although they had expected me to be placed by now, they now could only say that they expected all remaining candidates to be assigned over the next couple of weeks
Makes sense if the consider a 'serious delay' to be 9 days - i.e. the diplomatic service results finally came out on the 27th June instead of the 18th.
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gt94sss2
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#566
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(Original post by tnj)
Question: if they need to assign a mix of scores, ages, genders and experience to each department, does this mean they make a compatible group and send that to the dept (in which case it does not really matter what your score was in terms of how quickly you get assigned) OR does it mean that they work from the top assigning people quite quickly at first and then slower and slower as they try to tesselate the remainder, ie needing to satisfy their mix criteria?

Anyone care to speculate?!
I suspect its the latter - they start allocating all the 'high scores' while waiting for the FCO results to come out etc, where those who are unsuccessful would also have 'high' scores.

Then they work down the reminder of the list, taking the mix of candidates into account when allocating departments.

Of course, to know if thats true or not - you would all need to share FSAC scores - thought I think most are in a relatively narrow band anyway.
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Prince Rhyus
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#567
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Just to flag up with all of you who are about to join the Fast Stream, I met up with some other FSers from various departments and they tell me the next intake will be starting sometime in September. Don't panic if you haven't heard - just keep hassling Cabinet Office. You may have already done that but you'll find that although it might seem like trying to get blood out of a stone, in a years time you'll be that stone trying to hold onto that blood while some trade press magazine is trying to get something from you - for example.

It may well be that some departments are still going through their business planning process and don't know how many people they'll need for which posts, in which case Cabinet Office can't get back to you to say yay or nay.

A couple of things to throw on your horizon, every month we have a cross Whitehall gathering - ask your grade manager about it when you arrive, and there's also a Fast Streamers Ball later on this autumn - again, you should be told about this when you start. (Last time around over 200 people went to it.)

So...keep your eyes peeled for all things social when you start.
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axle77
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#568
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#568
Hi All- I hope i get to meet some of you. It does seem as if the Commons is a bit more isolated....oh well....
anyway, a friend of mine asked me today about how to get through the online tests. Despite doing them in October last year, I cant remember how many verbal questions there were and how many numerical and in what time frame? Anyone remember?? Secondly can anyone recall how many questions followed from each stem??
And finally, I prepared by doing different questions from different online sources and my university careers centre stuff, but are there any good single sources that people can recommend??
Cheers, guys.
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gt94sss2
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#569
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(Original post by axle77)
Hi All- I hope i get to meet some of you. It does seem as if the Commons is a bit more isolated....oh well....
anyway, a friend of mine asked me today about how to get through the online tests. Despite doing them in October last year, I cant remember how many verbal questions there were and how many numerical and in what time frame? Anyone remember?? Secondly can anyone recall how many questions followed from each stem??
Yes. it would be good for us all to meet up at some stage.

There were:

- 40 verbal reasoning questions (20 minutes)
- 20 numerical questions (25 minutes)

with 4/5 questions for each 'stem'

And finally, I prepared by doing different questions from different online sources and my university careers centre stuff, but are there any good single sources that people can recommend??
All I did to prepare was use the two optional chances the Fast Stream website gives everyone to practice similar online tests before you have to take them for real, so you are used to the format and timing requirements..

I found that simple things probably helped me, like 'general reading' before taking the verbal test and doing the odd sudoku puzzle..

Its worth remembering that there was also the untimed Fast Stream Competency Questionnaire which seemed to go on forever (112 questions), which you can't practice and its probably not a good idea to do so even if one could..
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moley
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#570
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#570
Practising numerical tests can make a massive difference. I managed to get a top 5% nationwide score for a numerical test at a consultancy firm despite not being great at maths, and that I put purely down to practice.
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tnj
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#571
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#571
re: numerical reasoning

I got a great book from amazon which basically takes you back to really simple maths but helps you do it faster and has loads of practice. I just did the chapters on percentages, interest, and the graph analysis stuff. It's called 'How to Pass Numerical Reasoning Tests' (by Heidi Smith) and it does exactly what it says on the spine!
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starry skies
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#572
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#572
(Original post by gt94sss2)

Its worth remembering that there was also the untimed Fast Stream Competency Questionnaire which seemed to go on forever (112 questions), which you can't practice and its probably not a good idea to do so even if one could..
It's been so long I'd forgotten all about those! Though you can't practice for it I do think you need to be in a mentally self-confident "zone" when you're filling that questionnaire in - no room for self doubt!
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moley
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#573
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#573
(Original post by starry skies)
It's been so long I'd forgotten all about those! Though you can't practice for it I do think you need to be in a mentally self-confident "zone" when you're filling that questionnaire in - no room for self doubt!
Definitely good advice. I always erred on the side of being more positive.
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moley
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#574
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(Original post by Quady)
Thats just a self assessment thign to put people off though isn't it? It doesn't count for anything.
It does count. I think there might have been a self-assessment as well though.
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moley
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#575
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(Original post by Quady)
I meant the 115 questions not the verbal/numerical testing. It could have counted - I can't remember!

btw heres the official advise
http://www.faststream.gov.uk/userfil...estsAdvice.pdf

and this is the application flow chart

http://www.faststream.gov.uk/userfil...ionProcess.pdf
I also meant the 115 questions. From the site:

The Competency Questionnaire is rather different as you are asked to assess yourself in terms of behaviours that relate to the competencies we look for in Fast Streamers. The results from this test will be used alongside those from the reasoning tests in deciding who will progress to the next stage of the selection process.
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starry skies
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#576
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I don't think it matters how well you've done in the verbal/numerical parts if you don't "score" well in the competency questionnaire. It's not the kind of thing you can cheat at (i.e. giving them the answers you think they want to hear, it's put together in such a fashion that you'll soon find yourself coming unstuck if you do that, 'cause they're very good at picking up inconsistencies in your responses) but I re-iterate that it definitely helps to think confidently about yourself, your ability to work as part of a team and to "think outside the box". This rather strange advice will make more sense when you actually fill it in!
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Prince Rhyus
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#577
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#577
(Original post by Quady)
Hi Prince Rhyus!

Do FSers outside of London attend the cross Whitehall gatherings (are the fast stream or anyone?) and the same question for other social events inc. summer balls.

Anything I should be aware of as a fast streamer outside of London?
Thanks
Yes and yes - but it's a bit hit-and-miss for people outside of London as we don't have a centrally-held list of who's employed where (Gershon cuts), so we try to do the best that we can to ensure reps with regional offices keep regionally based people in touch.

Each central department has a Fast Stream grade manager - or the equivelant who tries to co-ordinate formal stuff. They will be able to put you in touch with your social rep.
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moley
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#578
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(Original post by starry skies)
I don't think it matters how well you've done in the verbal/numerical parts if you don't "score" well in the competency questionnaire. It's not the kind of thing you can cheat at (i.e. giving them the answers you think they want to hear, it's put together in such a fashion that you'll soon find yourself coming unstuck if you do that, 'cause they're very good at picking up inconsistencies in your responses) but I re-iterate that it definitely helps to think confidently about yourself, your ability to work as part of a team and to "think outside the box". This rather strange advice will make more sense when you actually fill it in!
I'm not so sure. There are a couple of questions where it's clear that you put you're not like that (even if you think you are), and for the rest of them you don't want to say indifferent or whatever the moderate response is. Plus you can pick an area where you want to be slightly weaker at and be super-strong at the others.
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gt94sss2
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#579
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(Original post by starry skies)
I don't think it matters how well you've done in the verbal/numerical parts if you don't "score" well in the competency questionnaire. It's not the kind of thing you can cheat at (i.e. giving them the answers you think they want to hear, it's put together in such a fashion that you'll soon find yourself coming unstuck if you do that, 'cause they're very good at picking up inconsistencies in your responses)
Yes - the part of the competency questionnaire where they ask you to individually rate how much phrases like honest, hard-working, dependable and intelligent is reasonably straightforward.

Its when they give you the same list and ask you to choose the one which is most like you and the one which is least like you that was much harder for me.
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Bumble12345
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#580
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#580
Arn't we the 2008 intake?
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