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EPSO is excluding candidates who could stay in the competition
An FFPE elected member on an EPSO competition selection board recently came
across a new problem, described in the figures below.
As a rule, competition notices state that following the verbal numerical
reasoning tests – the computer-based tests (CBTs) – only the 100 candidates
(to take an example) with the best marks will be invited to send in their
application file, for the selection board to check that they fulfil the
competition conditions. The other candidates with fewer marks than the last
of these 100 candidates are told that they cannot continue.
Again as an example, suppose the last of these 100 candidates gets 48 out of
a possible maximum 60 marks, and that there are another 60 candidates with
between 47 and 30 marks out of 60 (with 30 being the 50% pass-mark for CBTs).
The procedure then goes like this: the 100 candidates send their files to
EPSO and they are passed on to the selection board.
It often happens that some of these 100 best candidates from the CBT do not
fulfil the competition conditions and the board eliminates them. For
instance, suppose that 20 of them do not meet the conditions.
As a result, the number of candidates admitted to the second stage is no
longer 100 but only 80. But other candidates who also passed the CBT, though
only scoring between 47 and 30 marks – enough to put them in places 81 to
100 – will not be included because of this EPSO procedure.
And yet the solution to the problem is simplicity itself.
If EPSO asked all candidates who pass the CBT to send in their file, the
board would be able to check the files of the top 100 candidates, (a task
that it is meant to do anyway), exclude the candidates who do not meet the
competition conditions, replace them with an equal number of candidates with
the highest marks in the CBT (at the same time checking their admissibility
on the basis of their file) and so ensure that 100 candidates, not 80, go
forward to the second stage.
The FFPE says that EPSO’s current practice unfairly harms some candidates,
who are excluded because other candidates do not meet the competition
The FFPE urges Mr Wilson and Mr Quitin, our representatives on the EPSO
management board, to support this proposal.
The FFPE also advises candidates who have passed CBTs but have not been
called forward to the next stage of the competition to be sure to ask EPSO
1 Their CBT mark,
2 Their placing in the list of candidates,
3 The mark of the last person admitted to the second stage, and
4 The number of candidates admitted to the second stage of the competition.
If they see that the number of candidates admitted to the second stage of the
competition is lower than the number shown in the competition notice, and
their mark is very close to the mark of the last person admitted, they should
appeal; and if their appeal is rejected, write to the FFPE, which will
support them in drawing up a complaint to the Ombudsman against EPSO for
The FFPE fights for the interests of all staff, including those who have yet
to start work in Parliament.
Support the FFPE in the next elections to the Staff Committee, taking place
from 5 to 15 November 2007, and ensure it can go on fighting on your behalf.