136. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the procedures adopted under the mobility policy; if it is possible for a person to move backwards on the list; the circumstances in which such could occur; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19904/18 asked on 08 May 2018)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): Phase 1A of the Civil Service Mobility scheme was launched for Clerical Officers and Executive Officers to apply for mobility in November 2017. Over 3,300 staff members have applied for mobility since its launch. As a matter of policy for the scheme, applicants are queued by date of application in the first instance, and length of service in the second instance.

It was open to applicants to enter a legacy date on their initial Mobility application from 13/11/2017 until 07/02/2018. This was to facilitate the inclusion of legacy dates from previous transfer applications made through legacy transfer lists (including the Central Applications Facility, Central Transfer Lists, and Internal Regional Transfer Lists) on a voluntary opt-in basis.

A legacy date is applicable to each public service branch (PSB) in a Mobility Zone, and requires verification from the respective owner of the legacy transfer List. Once the legacy date has been verified for a PSB in a zone, it can be applied to all of the other PSB’s within that zone. There is a period of 20 business days allocated for legacy date verification.

An applicant may see their waitlist position drop in the following circumstances:

- The legacy date which they entered on their Mobility application has not been verified within the time allocated for this; in such cases their application date will revert to the date of entering their application on the Mobility system;

- Where an applicant goes on a leave of absence, they may see their placing on the relevant waitlist drop if their length of service drops below that of another officer with the same application date;

- Where an officer’s Mobility applications have been cancelled through no fault of their own, and not in accordance with policy, they are subsequently re-entered with the original application details. When an application is re-entered, it can result in other officers on the same waitlist(s) dropping in position;

- Amendment to an officer’s application date has been allowed through specific policy provision. Examples include:

- The legacy date entered by an applicant on their initial application has not carried to all of the PSB waitlists in a zone due to a technical error which was present on the system for a number of days during the legacy date application period. When this is found to have occurred, the application is amended to reflect the legacy date entered by an applicant in good faith;

- Where an officer entered a legacy date which was later than that they were entitled to on the basis of erroneous information from the Central Application Facility;

- An officer has made an individual appeal to Mobility Policy to have their Mobility application(s) amended to include an earlier application date, and this has been facilitated. The circumstances of these cases may vary.