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Firefighter Development Programme


The purpose of the Firefighter Development Programme is to guide newly joined personnel at firefighter level from Trainee to Competent status, within the Integrated Personnel Development System (IPDS). Guidance from The Department for Communities and Local Government suggest that a Firefighter should be able to achieve competent status within 3 years. However an individual's development is not time bound as each will develop at a differing rate.

Development takes place in three distinct phases, acquisition, application and then, maintenance of the knowledge and skills that are required to work safely and efficiently in the workplace.

Firefighters will receive their initial training modules (acquisition) at Service Headquarters, Training Centre. This training will cover the core skills required to allow them to work safely within the confines of a fire station and, under strict supervision while attending operational incidents.

The Trainees Initial Training course will be single status, and modular in format. It will consist of both theoretical and practical elements.

The practical elements  will essentially consist of:

Induction package of 18 hours guided learning

In order for firefighters to progress onto competent status, they will have to gain further skills and knowledge. This is achieved through a structured programme of training, development and assessments. During this period the firefighter will be reported on at regular intervals throughout the Development Programme.

Development Programmes are produced for each of the generic roles identified within the IPDS and each of these Development Programmes will clearly identify:

The effectiveness of the acquisition stage is reflected in how well an individual can apply these skills and knowledge in the work place. This will be determined by assessment of the individual carrying out their role. The individual's line manager will usually carry out this assessment, however other identified assessors may be used.

Individuals will be required to provide written evidence of competence for each element of the NOS for their role, as detailed in individual Development Programmes. When the line manager, assessor and individual agree that competence has consistently been demonstrated for a specific unit/element then this can be signed off. This evidence may be sampled as part of the quality assurance process to ensure conformity of assessment standards.

When the individual has consistently demonstrated competence for their role, and provided current, valid, authentic and sufficient evidence to support this, then they will progress from the development phase to the competent phase of their role. This evidence may be used towards a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) award for their role.

Specific details of Development Programmes for Retained and Wholetime Firefighters can be found in the following documents (word format) GN/9/4/1/1/1, DP/9/4/1/1/1, GN/9/4/1/1/2, and  DP/9/4/1/1/2