Gaining approval is the first step on the journey to parliament

Becoming an MP >> Gaining approval

Getting approved to become an MP

If you want to get elected as a Conservative Member of Parliament, you will first need to show the very best of yourself in the Parliamentary Assessment. This is where people get approved to put themselves forward to individual constituencies at a later stage in the process.

The College Green Group team is here to help at whatever stage you are on your journey to Westminster. We can work with you from the moment you first think of applying, or help you hone your performance for the assessment centres. 

We will analyse your personal history, highlighting achievements you may have taken for granted in your personal life, community, or charity work.

We will review your professional CV, identifying relevant experience and highlighting successes that will help present yourself as a strong and credible future MP.

We will go through your involvement with the Conservative Party, showcasing the areas where you have delivered for your community or constituency. We will then identify how this has helped prepare you for Westminster.

Finally, we will explore your Conservative values. This will involve a discussion of current news and political matters, to help you become comfortable in setting out your views and justifying them.

Your application

At the core of the assessment process are four attributes that the Party wants to see in all its candidates: Are you a Conservative, with a big “C”? Have you got the skills and experiences which will serve you well as an elected representative? Do you have integrity and can you make tough choices when needed to?

Your initial application form asks four questions which go to these four themes. We can help you craft your responses based on our conversations to ensure you progress to the next stage.

Once you do, you must go through a due diligence stage. As part of this the Party will take a deep look into your online presence. We carry out a Digital Review as part of our service to identify any areas of concern or issues with your online security. You will also be asked to provide three referees, who will be asked to complete an in depth reference form. If you need help choosing these referees, we’re always available.


Preparing for your parliamentary assessment centre

Once you clear the due diligence stage, you will be invited to take the first stage of a two-part assessment centre. A unique feature of the College Green Group service is our approach to preparing you for this. Working with you in a series of one-to-one coaching sessions, with each stage individually tailored to your requirements.

Working with the College Green Group team, you will cover the key elements of the assessment over an extended period. The aim is to provide you with a deeper understanding of the process and of yourself, and a way to put that across in each of the tasks you will face.

Over three, two-hour sessions, we will focus on preparing you for the first stage of the assessment. We will help you craft the opening statement that you will be invited to make at the beginning of the 90-minute, core competency interview. We will then advise you on how to approach the interview questions in a way which clearly demonstrates the skills and experiences the Conservative Party wants in its MPs. And finally, we will run through examples of the “in-tray” exercise you will undertake.

Cementing your approval to stand

When you have passed the first stage assessment, you will be invited to the second stage of the assessment centre. This takes place in-person and you face four challenges; the group exercise, the hustings exercise, a situational judgement test and a developmental psychometric test.

The group exercise is about working collaboratively and ensuring you deliver the desired output within a time limit. Our team knows the exercise format well and can help you develop your strategy and tactics to approach this task. 

The hustings exercise requires you to make a short speech in the context of an election hustings, then take questions, just as you would as a parliamentary candidate. Then you get to play the audience and quiz your fellow applicants. We can help you craft that speech and prepare for the questions you might face. We can also guide you on questions you might want to ask.

The situational judgement test is a rapid-fire test of your decision making skills. We have several examples that we can use to help you work out your approach to this challenge, ensuring you can perform at your best on the day.

The final test – officially not part of the assessment process – is a developmental psychometric test, three separate ones in fact. We have studied the tests you will take and can help you interpret the results from a practice site that we recommend.

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