Overview

A simple description of the work I do is that I am the public appointments watchdog. I'm independent of the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Government - this allows me to regulate public appointments without external influence or pressure.

 

What does this mean? My job is to monitor the process used by the Scottish Government to select the people who serve on the boards of Scotland's public bodies to help ensure it is a fair process, open to everyone who wishes to apply.

 

In 2006, the then Public Appointments Commissioner for Scotland, Karen Carlton, published a Code of Practice which makes clear what the Scottish Government must do during every appointment. Karen developed a revised Code of Practice which came into force on 1 September 2011 and her successor, Stuart Allan, revised this to produce the current Code. This version came into force in October 2013.

 

I am supported in this role by a team of Public Appointments Advisers who scrutinise the public appointments process and facilitate compliance with the Code.

 

The Codes focus on what should happen. The Scottish Government translates this into how the appointments process will be put into practice. We work to influence the Government's practices, encouraging them to design a process which is welcoming, easy to understand and work through, as well as effective at identifying the best people for every role. Anyone who has a complaint abut the way the appointments process is handled can bring their concern to us.

 

We have a strong commitment to diversity and are working with the Scottish Government to find new and innovative ways to increase the number and diversity of people applying for public appointments. I hope you will be one of them!

 

More information on the public appointments process is available from the Frequently Asked Questions page.

 

I regulate appointments to an extensive and diverse range of public bodies. View the list of regulated bodies.

 

The office was established by the Public Appointments and Public Bodies etc. (Scotland) Act 2003 and amended by the Scottish Parliamentary Commission and Commissioners etc. Act 2010 an the Public Services Reform (Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life in Scotland etc.) Order 2013 (Scottish Statutory Instrument 2013/197).

 

The regulation of public appointments is one function of the Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life in Scotland.

Read more about my public standards function>