SLaM (NHS Trust) Application & Interview Guide

Job Applications

The application process for South London and Maudsley Foundation (SLaM) NHS Trust is made to be simple and easy to showcase your skills and talent. The SLaM NHS Trust are committed to creating an inclusive and diverse environment to attract and retain top talent.

Whilst this resource is specifically for SLaM, each NHS trust will follow a similar recruitment process so you can expect the same format for applications and interviews (all of the hints and tips in this resource will still apply).


Top tips for your supporting statement
What information you’ll need to apply
So you’ve submitted your application. What happens next?
If successful, what can you expect from the interview process?

There are two key parts of your NHS Trust application 1) your supporting statement and, 2) information about your employment, qualifications, references etc.

Your supporting statement is 1500 words long and is an opportunity for you to explain why you’re interested in the job and present your skills, knowledge, and experience in a clear and concise structure.

  • Important things to highlight: There are a few things that you can highlight in your personal statement, including:
    • Introduce yourself and summarise your interest for the role 
    • Make a case for why the role might suit you and your skillset (highlight relevant skills linked to the job description) 
    • Work placements and experiences that reflect your skillset – what did you learn/gain from these experiences
    • Academic profile and interests 
    • Relevant Employment and Voluntary Experience 
    • Interests and qualities that highlight and identity your personal skills 
  • Read the job description carefully: Your personal statement is a great opportunity to demonstrate relevant skills. The “essential criteria” are the skills and experience you need to do the job. The “desirable criteria” are ‘nice-to-have’. It’s important to note that even if you don’t meet all the desirable criteria, you can still apply for the post.
  • Explain gaps in your employment history: SLaM understands that people have varied career experiences and so feel free to mention any career breaks or periods of voluntary work.
  • Use the STAR technique: You can use this technique in order to evidence your experiences (you can also use this technique in the interview process too)
SITUATION: set the context for your storyTASK: describe what was required of you
ACTION: describe what you didRESULT: what was the result of your actions

An example: As a support worker at {{COMPANY}}, I adeptly managed an increase in individualised client requests (situation). Assigned to ensure prompt and tailored support, I organised daily check-ins, prioritised specific needs, and maintained open communication with clients (task and action). The result was a timely and personalised support delivery, exceeding client expectations and fostering a positive client-caregiver relationship (result)
  • Stay up to date: SLaM will use the information you provided in order to contact you and share information about your application – make sure it’s correct.
  • Check it twice: You cannot edit an application once you have submitted it, so check it twice and review it carefully.

Before you start your application it’s worth gathering any information you might need. All applications are completed online via TRAC (the NHS HR system) and you will require an account to submit your application (note they don’t accept CV applications). 

Basic Information

  • Full Name
  • Address
  • Email
  • Work Telephone
  • Personal Telephone
  • National Insurance Number
  • To disclose whether you have a personal relationship with a member of staff at the recruiting organisation
  • References for past 3 years of employment

Employment History

  • This will cover the past 3 years of your employment. If you have gaps in your employment, don’t worry, you’ll have the opportunity to justify why later on in your application.

Education and Professional Qualifications

An image with books and writing to show a depiction of education

<a href="">Education illustrations by Storyset</a>
  • You’ll need to share any education and professional qualifications you have achieved – this will include Maths and English. 
  • If you have gaps in your skillset the The SLaM team can help you to acquire these new skills.


Alongside your employment history, you will need to provide references to cover the entire period, including any gaps in employment. It’s really important that you get this bit right. 

  • The references need to come from a professional email i.e. an Employer, Study (School/College/University/Tutor), Voluntary Work.  It’s best to provide the email address of the HR contact from your previous organisation as they’ll most likely have the relevant information. 
  • In terms of providing references for gaps in employment you can use documents such as benefit statements. You can also provide a Character Reference of someone who has known you at least over the 3 years or any gap period i.e. not a family member – but someone professional, or e.g. from Church/ establishment, a member from DWP, etc.

Supporting Information

This section is best used to show why you might be suitable for the particular role you are applying for. It’s in addition to your personal statement and can include: 

  • Whether you are a resident of a local borough and the employer is looking to hire local 
  • Demonstrating specific experience you want to highlight, whether that’s paid, unpaid or lived experiences such as hobbies, volunteering, travel etc. 

What else might be needed?

  • Professional Registrations: It might be that you have clinical or professional registrations to share, in which case it’s important to confirm a relevant professional registration at the time of application. Without these details, you risk not being shortlisted.
  • Equal Opportunities: Information regarding your ethnicity, sex, and religion is entirely confidential and will not be seen by anyone involved in the selection process.
  • DBS: This won’t be required for your application, however if you are successful with your application the Trust will fund you to get a check.
  • Criminal Record: You will not be discriminated against if you declare a criminal record. If you aren’t sure what information to share in your application, unlock have some really useful guides for you to tap into, see these here.
  • Healthcare Certificate: If you don’t have a healthcare certificate then this is not a problem. The trust will provide a 12 week healthcare training and you will receive a salary during this time. 

TOP TIP – Try and apply early: The deadline for applications is 23:59 (London time) on the date specified on the job advert unless otherwise stated. It’s always best to apply sooner rather than later. 

Once you’ve submitted your application you will receive an email confirming that they have received the application. You will then be informed if you have been shortlisted for an interview. 

If you’re successful at the interview you will be provided with a conditional offer – subject to satisfactory pre-employment checks.

Please note: due to the high number of applications, they can only provide feedback to those attending an interview.

Researching & Preparing: Values

You will likely be asked about how you fit in with the values of the organisation you’re applying for. For example, with SLaM the values are the following, have a think about how you meet these values: 

A interview taking place between a hiring manager and a possible employee
  • Compassionate: treat people as valued individuals, protect their dignity and privacy with compassion, be patient, understanding and self aware
  • Hopeful: be optimistic, bring a positive and can-do attitude, bring a smile and welcome change
  • Understanding: put myself in other people’s shoes, act with empathy. Take the time to listen to you, be self aware and authentic
  • Appreciative: notice the little things people do to make a difference, thank people publicly, and give ABC appreciation so that they feel valued
  • Honest: be honest and direct with you , building trusting relationships. Make it safe and easy for people to speak up, give kind feedback, and be open to receiving it too
  • Equity: fair, celebrate people’s differences, be impartial and open-minded, actively seek to promote equity, reduce discrimination and support anti-racism
  • Inclusive: be approachable and welcoming to everyone whoever they are, involve people, encourage others and help them take responsibility
  • Civility: be civil, courteous and polite; speak in appropriate tone of voice; be responsible for my own attitude: kind, caring and polite
  • Integrity: live the Trust’s values, set and deliver high standards, I will be prompt and value your time. I will do what I say I am going to do
  • Supportive: be attentive to other people’s needs and feelings, willing to offer help, encourage others and help them take responsibility
  • Open: honest and direct with you, share knowledge and decisions; be willing to change how I communicate to engage others better
  • Listen: honest and direct with you, share knowledge and decisions; be willing to change how I communicate to engage others better

Researching & Preparing: The Role Requirements

They will also ask questions about how you meet the role criteria. Read through the job description again to refresh your memory on the specifics of the role and what it entails. You can then show your skills in these areas during the interview. 

Some examples of questions they might ask include: 

  • Provide me with an example of when you have demonstrated RESILIENCE in your role
  • Provide me with an example of when you have dealt with a challenging situation that required you to adapt.
  • Tell me about your experience working with clients with mental health challenges. 
  • Please describe what excellent customer service/care looks like in line with our company values
  • Can you share with us why you are passionate about working within the healthcare sector
  • Describe a time when you have had to deal with a difficult customer/client and how you acted and what you did to resolve the situation.
  • Please tell us how you would prioritise your time and your customers needs 

TOP TIP – Review your application: Re-read your application form to remind yourself of the details you have provided, as you could also use these as examples during the interview

At the interview

  • Be yourself: Your interviewer wants to get to know you and find out more about what makes you unique. Don’t be afraid to show your personality and be yourself during the interview. After all, this is your chance to make a good impression and stand out from the crowd.
  • Take your time: It is okay to take a moment to think before you answer. If you don’t understand the question or have trouble responding, ask the interviewer to repeat it or for clarification.
  • Be thorough but concise with your answers: Keep in mind that the panel will be looking for evidence related to the criteria in the job description.
  • Focus on your roles and contributions: focus on examples of what you have done specifically and try and avoid starting answers with ‘we’
  • Come prepared with questions: Have a few questions prepared that you could ask the panel during your interview. This will demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role, as well as your commitment to learning more about the organisation. These questions can be:
    • Can you tell me a bit more about the team I would be working with?
    • What are the progression opportunities in the role?
  • Make a lasting impression: Think about how you will present yourself in terms of body language, attitude, and confidence. Make sure you dress appropriately for the role that you are applying for. 

TOP TIP – Plan your journey: Make sure that you arrive well-prepared, on time, and with enough time to get comfortable before the interview.