NICS Temporary Redeployment Opportunities

On this page you can find further information on temporary redeployment opportunities during COVID-19 and a list of related frequently asked questions.

Current opportunities

You should not apply for these opportunities if you are in a post that has been identified by your department as essential. Line managers should not give approval to staff in such posts to apply for these positions.

Job Role Department Grade  Further Information
Business Engagement Sponsor Branch DfE SO Volunteer now
Energy Project Management Office DfE DP, SO & EO1 Volunteer now
Racial Equality Unit TEO EO2 Volunteer Now
Driver Licensing Branch DfI AA Volunteer Now
Office of the Chief Digital Information Officer DoH SO Volunteer Now
Office of the Chief Digital Information Officer DoH DP Volunteer Now
Prisoner Ombudsman's Office DoJ SO Volunteer Now
Enterprise Shared Servces (ESS) DoF DP Volunteer Now
Enterprise Shared Servces (ESS) DoF SO Volunteer Now
NI Direct Customer Service Representatives   AO Volunteer now
PHA Surveillance Officer PHA EO1/SO Volunteer now
PHA Surveillance and Information Scientist PHA SO Volunteer now
PHA Senior Epidemiological Scientist (DP) PHA DP Volunteer now

Applications for the above opportunities will remain open until the positions are successfully filled.


1. How are staff chosen for specific roles?

When a request is received from Corporate Operational Personnel Redeployment Unit (COPRU) for assistance with temporary redeployment, selection of suitable staff will, in most circumstances, be managed by the parent Departments. COPRU will advise on requirements and numbers requested, including the decision on the number of staff each department will release. Departments should engage with Departmental Trade Union during this process. Depending on the requirement, the selection process may be managed by another business area such as COPRU, and include consultation with Central Trade Union.

In the first instance, volunteers from the pool of staff identified by Departments, who are available for temporary redeployment, will be sought to fill essential vacancies. Staff must get line management approval before volunteering.

Depending on the nature of the roles, staff without access to IT will also be taken into consideration for temporary redeployment.

If there is an insufficient number of volunteers identified, compulsory temporary redeployment may be considered, involving remaining staff who are available and considered suitable for the essential role(s).

If more staff volunteer or are identified for temporary compulsory redeployment, the parent department or COPRU will use random selection to select individuals for redeployment.

2. If I’m selected for redeployment, can I work remotely from home?

Yes, if this can be facilitated. However, depending on the role, it may not be possible for staff to work from home. Where working from home is not possible, the area you are redeployed to will be asked to provide detail and assurances in relation to appropriate social distancing measures.

3. My Department has told me I can’t volunteer for redeployment, why?

Some roles within Departments are essential to critical day to day business, particularly if they are trying to mitigate impacts whilst experiencing a high level of workforce absence. Public interest requires us to keep these essential posts filled.

4. I am an agency worker, can I be considered for redeployment?

Agency workers can apply for redeployment opportunities, unless otherwise stated, provided their business area agrees. If selected, costs must be covered by your current business area and you will continue to complete your time sheets and send them through your temporary line manager/supervisor to your current line manager for approval. Your redeployment will automatically terminate if the assignment with your current business area comes to an end.

5. How long will I be redeployed for?

This will be confirmed in your letter informing you of the redeployment. The length of the redeployment will be kept under review.

6. I have been told that my redeployment will last for a minimum period. Will I return to my previous post when my redeployment ends?

Yes, line managers will not be able to permanently backfill your post during your temporary redeployment. Any extension of your redeployment, if requested, will require the agreement of yourself and your line manager.

7. I have a member of staff who has been told that their temporary redeployment has been extended long term, but I need them to return to their permanent post. Can I end the redeployment or backfill their post?

Business areas will normally have the right to end the redeployment at any time only if it is critical for the member of staff to return to their permanent post. However, in some cases, the temporary redeployment will be on the basis of a commitment to a minimum time period.

If feasible, posts can be backfilled on a temporary basis until the end of the temporary redeployment.

If there is a request to extend a redeployment long term, agreement may be reached between the redeployed member of staff and line manager to permanently backfill the vacant post. At the end of the redeployment all possible steps will be taken to place the member of staff in a post within the department they were in prior to redeployment.

8. Will I have to work different hours from what I currently work?

The hours of work will normally be the same as you currently carried out, although a flexible approach will be required at certain times to meet business needs of the Host Organisation. 

Some roles may require you to work different hours / work patterns from what you currently work. However, this will be made clear when the request for volunteers is circulated.

9. Who will pay my salary and allowances during my temporary redeployment?

Salary and allowances will continue to be paid by your permanent business area. If the redeployment is extended beyond 6 months, agreement will have to be made between your permanent business area and the temporary area/organisation regarding who will pay further salary costs etc. 

10. Can I accrue flexi leave?

If you are an essential worker and in work, flexi arrangements will be subject to business needs. 

At the discretion of your line manager you may work flexi time and accrue flexi leave while you are being required to work from home but this arrangement must be robustly managed by your line manager.

11. Who approves my annual leave request?

The Host Organisation business area will approve any request for annual leave in the first instance. However, you should submit your leave request through HR Connect as usual, where possible.

12. What if I require Special Leave?

You apply to your Host Organisation/business area Line Manager and they will liaise with your permanent Line Manager. All special leave requests will be considered in line with the NICS Special Leave policy.

13. Who organises any training if I need it for my temporary role?

The Host Organisation/business area will organise any training required for your temporary role.

14. If I don’t like my new role can I transfer to another role?

Due to the situation it is unlikely that you will be able to transfer to another role.

15. What do I do if I am concerned about Health & Safety in my new role?

You should raise any concerns with your Host Organisation/business area Line Manager. The Host Organisation must comply with all relevant requirements contained in or having effect under the legislation relating to health, safety and welfare at work. If you are still concerned after you raise your concerns with your Host Organisation Line Manager, you can contact COPRU at You can also contact your Departmental Trade Union rep for advice / guidance.

16. I am a non-mobile member of staff, will I be considered for redeployment?

Non-mobile staff will be expected to accept a temporary transfer to a post within reasonable daily travelling distance if work cannot be done remotely.  

17. If I relocate to the Public Sector will I still be employed NICS?

Yes, you will remain an employee of NICS.

18. Will I receive a car park space, if required?

You will have to contact your temporary line manager. Contact details will be on the letter that you will receive when you are selected for temporary redeployment.

19. What if I am unable to attend due to a non-COVID-19 illness?

You will need to contact the temporary Line Manager. You will remain subject to NICS sickness absence procedures and sick pay scheme and will attend any review meetings / medical examinations required by the department as detailed in the NICS Sickness Absence policy.

20. Will I be able to claim for any allowances/expenses during my temporary redeployment?

Yes, details of how you can apply will be contained in your redeployment letter.

IT Assist Service Requests

Please remember when staff are transferring on a temporary basis between Departments to allow sufficient time for IT Assist Service Requests to be processed and completed. For information on timescales please see the IT Assist Service Catalogue or contact your Business Relationship Manager.

To ensure that these requests are processed as quickly as possible all relevant information must be provided and necessary approvals confirmed eg Departmental Information Manager and/or IT Security Officer approvals. Specific considerations include whether equipment will be transferring with the staff member; if access to the parent Department mailbox is to be retained; if access to specific shared folders/mailboxes are required, etc. 

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