Frequently Asked Questions

Assessment process

Q: Can I apply to work for The Challenge?

A: The Challenge welcomes applications from people of all backgrounds to work with us. We can accept applications from aged 18 or over to work with The Challenge. We require all staff to have the right to work in the UK. All staff must undergo an enhanced CRB check prior to working with The Challenge. Staff without an enhanced CRB check, or with an unspent criminal record may not be able to work with The Challenge.

Q: How do I apply to work with The Challenge?

A: All candidates new to The Challenge will apply to The Challenge through the online application form. All applicants will be contacted within two weeks to let them know if we would like to continue with their application and, if so, they will be invited to assessment.

Assessments for mentor and leader roles are five hours long and take place at The Challenge offices in London, Birmingham and Manchester. They consist of a series of group exercises, and the aim of the assessment is to identify candidates’ suitability to work on The Challenge.

After assessment, successful candidates will be asked for their availability and, subject to mutually convenient dates, and further subject to an enhanced CRB check, successful referees and completed contract, candidates will then be allocated to work with The Challenge.

Training process

Q: Do I have to attend training?

A: Yes, all staff attend training with The Challenge. Leaders attend four days of training and mentors attend two days of training.

Working with The Challenge

Q: Can I be self-employed when working with The Challenge?

A: People contracted on short term contracts during the summer will be treated as an employee of TCN and will be paid under PAYE rules (schedule E). This means that income tax and NI will deducted from salaries before they are paid to the employee, and TCN will pay employers NI on their behalf. The only exception is where an individual is contracted via a limited liability company. In this case the contract must be between TCN and the Ltd. company. For the avoidance of doubt, a Ltd. company must have a valid company number and be registered at Companies House. Any people contracted by non limited liability companies will be paid as employees of TCN under PAYE as detailed above.

Food and accommodation

Q: Will I receive food and accommodation?

A: All staff while on the Personal Challenge receive food and accommodation as part of the role.

Expenses policy

Q: What is The Challenge’s expenses policy?

A: The Challenge permits staff to claim for certain expenses undertaken while in their role.

All expenses must be submitted to The Challenge in the period from 1st July to 5th October 2012.

The Challenge’s expenses policy is based on a small number of principles:

  1. Money provided by donors to The Challenge should be treated very responsibility.
  2. Volunteers leading young people through The Challenge should not lose out financially.


What can be expensed?

See the below table to work out what you can expense:

  Challengers Project Volunteers (PVs) Paid Mentor (SMs, TMs) or Practitioner Paid Logistics Staff/ Leaders (PLs, APLs, LOs)
Travel during the Programme No Yes Yes Yes
Travel to and from the Programme No Yes No No
Phone calls No No No Yes
Other No No No No


There are two exceptions to this: PL and APL travel to the Assessment Weekend can be reimbursed up to £25, as they assist in training staff.


How do I claim expenses?

Claiming expenses is very easy.  Just follow these steps:

  1. Collect together your receipts from the summer and number them all.
  2. Go to our website and download an Expense Form.  Complete this on your computer – so that the numbers refer to the receipts.
  3. Scan or photograph your receipts.
  4. Write an email to [email protected] and attach the scans/photographs of your expenses and your Expense Form.
  5. Your claim will be authorised if everything is completed correctly.  We will aim to pay all expenses directly into your bank account within 7 days of receiving your expenses.

If you have any questions please contact us at [email protected].

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