Responding to Selection Criteria

About Tom Hannemann and his experience in preparing responses to selection criteria.

Responding to Selection Criteria

Responding to selection criteria can be daunting, frustrating and time consuming. Even experienced public sector managers and professionals find it a taxing process.

During 10 years in the public sector in recruitment, selection and management development roles, I trained hundreds of managers in numerous organisations in assessing candidates against selection criteria. 

Subsequently, as a consultant engaged by the Public Service Commission, I played a key role in articulating and documenting the core competencies for the Senior Executive Service and the SES feeder group. This formed the basis for the SES and executive selection criteria adopted throughout the Australian public sector.


I am therefore an expert in helping people prepare their responses to selection criteria.

By applying my extensive experience and advanced expertise, I ensure that clients are confident that their applications will fully reflect their capabilities against the requirements of the role. I do this by making sure that responses to the criteria provide evidence of your experience, skills, expertise, qualifications and achievements that demonstrate that they meet the criteria.


Responding to selection criteria requires more detail about your experience and achievements than you would typically provide in a resume. In some cases you will need to write 3 – 4 paragraphs (half a page or more) on each criterion to provide the required level of detail, leading to a 3 or 4 page document. In other cases you need to provide a 1,000 word response or a two page document.

The Public Sector includes:
  • Government Departments, Statutory Authorities and Agencies
  • Government-owned Businesses
  • Police Services
  • Emergency Services Organisations
  • Universities & Institutes of TAFE 
  • Local Councils
  • Government Schools
  • Some Private Schools

A resume accompanied by a short cover letter is usually not sufficient to enable you to apply for opportunities in public sector organisations.


You need specialist help from someone who has years of experience in helping people apply for opportunities in the public sector. Not only do you need to make sure that you comply with the requirements of applying for roles in the public sector, but that you are able to convince selection panels that you are an outstanding candidate worthy of serious consideration.

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