Working for Ofsted

The recruitment process, workplace benefits, holiday and leave, pay, pension and conditions at Ofsted.

Ofsted employs staff in a wide range of jobs – from inspectors to editors, IT specialists, policy advisers, data analysts, accountants and administrators – based in its main offices in London, Bristol, Manchester and Nottingham, its small offices in Cambridge, Birmingham and York, and working from home.

All our inspectors are DBS checked and have met our stringent criteria and undergone rigorous assessment and training affirming that they are suitable and qualified to carry out inspection work.


For most job opportunities, visit the Civil Service jobs site. If you want to become an inspector for Ofsted, see the final section on this page.


To apply for a job at Ofsted you need to be one of the following:

  • a UK national or a UK national with dual nationality
  • a Commonwealth citizen
  • a national of any member state of the European Economic Area

Many job vacancies also have specific requirements for application. See each job’s description for further details.

How to become an inspector

Early years inspectors

Early years inspectors currently work through 2 inspection service providers (ISPs), on both an employed and freelance basis. The ISPs are responsible for selection and training. The ISPs for early years inspections are:

Ofsted has announced that, from 1 April 2017, the inspection and regulation of early years provision will be brought under its direct management. In the meantime, please contact Prospects and/or Tribal if you would like to find out more about becoming an early years inspector.

Her Majesty’s Inspector (HMI)

Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) inspect education and care providers, challenge them to improve and help them get the support they need. Vacancies for HMI are normally advertised on a permanent, full-time basis. For more information about the role and to register your interest in future vacancies, please visit the dedicated HMI website.

Contracting as an Ofsted inspector

In September 2015, Ofsted began directly contracting inspectors for the inspection of education and further education and skills. These contracted roles are offered on the basis of:

  • a minimum of 16 days’ inspection per year for serving practitioners
  • a minimum of 32 days’ inspection per year for non-serving practitioners

For more information and to register your interest in future opportunities, please visit the dedicated Ofsted Inspector site. On your first visit to the site, you will need to use the ‘Create new account’ tab to set up an account.

Regulatory inspectors

Regulatory inspectors (social care and early years) inspect children’s homes, boarding schools, day care and childminding. Vacancies for these positions can be found on the Civil Service jobs site.