Everything You Need to Know About Being a Scribe

Who can be a Scribe?

Great scribes can come from many different backgrounds with a range of skills and experiences. We often find however, that former Australian Public Service (APS) staff are able to grasp the job quickly, as they may have had previous experience with the APS recruitment rounds and/or have an understanding of the APS merit-based selection processes.

The skills needed to be a scribe include:

  • Exceptional time management
  • Able to motivate yourself and work autonomously
  • High level written skills
  • Great listening skills
  • Reliability and flexibility
  • Able to work to tight deadlines and manage competing priorities
  • Able to develop rapport with clients

What does a Scribe actually do?

Scribing is an essential part of the APS recruitment process and Scribe Consultants offer many valuable services including:

  • Assisting recruitment selection committees by taking comprehensive notes during interviews
  • Transposing into selection committee reports for recruitment panel review
  • Providing shortlisting services
  • Conducting reference checks
  • Assessing work sample tests
  • Acting as an independent panel member
  • Provide executive minute taking services
  • Be part of “bulk recruitment” rounds where they act as a facilitator helping to guide panel members and applicants through various recruitment activities (such as Graduate Recruitment rounds).

How does HorizonOne come in?

We have a Scribing & Campaign team of 5 people here in the H1 office. This team manages a group of approximately 60 Scribing Consultants who work across Australia.

Clients, such as a government department, will approach H1 to support their recruitment needs for a specific process. Our team in the office will manage the administration of the job and coordinate a Scribing Consultant or Consultants to undertake the work required.

We have an extensive client base who rely on us to provide recruitment support and scribing services. This means we are always busy and have a strong flow of available work for our Scribing Consultants.

Where do Scribes work?

Depending on the job, Scribes can work in different environments. For example, if they have reference checks to complete, this can be done from the comfort of their own home. If a Scribe is attending interviews to act as a panel member or to take notes, they will work from the client’s office.

Most clients are very familiar with having scribes assist in their recruitment rounds and will have processes in place to make consultants coming in for a few hours or days, feel comfortable. This can include allocated parking and pre-arranged access to the building. This varies from job to job and our internal team always advise our Scribes in advance of the specific conditions. 

How many hours do Scribes work?

Our scribes work on a casual employment basis which means it is extremely flexible and you can determine your own work hours/ days based on your preferences.

We have scribes who are happy to work full time hours, while others prefer a few days a week due to family commitments. Some scribes are semi-retired and work to fund overseas holidays during the year. Others have second businesses, and scribe for the additional income.

How do you engage your Scribes?

Our Scribes generally work on a casual employment basis. We do have a few specialist, independent contractors that are engaged from time to time, however, for the most part, our scribes are an extension of the HorizonOne consulting team.

How do Scribes get paid?

We use an online software called Astute Payroll to manage all our payroll. Scribes complete timesheets for the hours/ days they work on a role and submit for approval. Once approved, they are paid for the work on a fortnightly basis.

What training/ support do H1 Scribes get? 

Scribes who join HorizonOne receive induction training, and ongoing support including information on specific client requirements, Selection Committee Report templates and sample redacted reports. This ensures that our Scribes have all the information and knowledge they need to meet ours and our clients’ expectations.

The beauty of scribing is that our scribes essentially work autonomously, yet we pride ourselves on building a team which provides ongoing support and guidance for our scribes. We work very closely with our team of scribes ensuring that they have all the information and tools required, while continually procuring work for them.

Is this a long-term career option? 

The lead up to Christmas is traditionally an exceptionally busy time for scribing as Client’s work to complete recruitment processes prior to the holiday season. This means RIGHT NOW we have a huge amount of work for Scribing Consultants. It’s a great time to dip your toe into scribing and those able to hit the ground running can enjoy work commencing ASAP. It is also a great opportunity for those perhaps just finishing up a contract role and not likely to secure a new role before the holidays. We are looking for extra help over the next 8 weeks and this could be a good chance to earn some extra income in between longer-term roles.

We also are looking to secure additional Scribes wanting to engage with casual work on an ongoing basis. This year has been huge for our whole scribing team and all indications are that we will have large amounts of work for all our consultants for the foreseeable future.

How do I apply?

You can submit your CV via our job advert here.

Alternatively, please contact Melissa Frazer on 02 6189 1044 or scribing@horizonone.com.au for a confidential discussion on how scribing could be a great option for you.

Where can I find more information? 

Check out an article featuring 3 of our Scribing Consultants, talking about their experience scribing, what they love about it and why it works for them.

Learn more about a year in review for our Scribing team in 2018.

Read more about our award-winning Scribing and Campaigns Team