The people we are looking for
On Thursday 2 May 2024, the residents of London will go to the polls to elect the Mayor of London and Greater London Authority assembly members.
For these elections we will need hundreds of people to help us with a variety of jobs. We are always looking for local residents and council staff who can demonstrate:
- good communication skills
- an ability to relate to people
- an awareness of, and sensitivity to, cultural diversity
- an ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
- a professional and politically neutral manner.
The Borough Returning Officer welcomes applications from people who are not employed by the council, especially from:
- local residents
- members of the annual canvass team
- applicants with previous election experience.
To work at an election, you must:
- be 18 years of age
- have a national insurance number
- have the right to work in the UK (you will be asked to provide your passport and any supporting documents to confirm you’re entitled to work in the UK).
You do not need to be an employee of Hammersmith & Fulham Council to work at an election.
However, you cannot work at an election if you are employed by a political party or candidate at an election, including unpaid work.
All staff employed by the Borough Returning Officer must be absolutely impartial and MUST NOT have canvassed for, assisted or openly supported any candidate or party at these elections.
Line manager’s approval (H&F Council staff only)
It is the council's practice to give the Borough Returning Officer the fullest support at election time.
However, the council still needs to provide normal services, especially on polling day. It is for managers to decide who can, and cannot, be released for council election duties.
Before applying for any job, you should discuss the matter with your line manager.
If you are offered polling station, postal vote opening or counting duties, your line manager must agree to your release for work and attending training.
You will be asked to confirm you have your line manager’s permission on your acceptance form.
We have roles for:
- working in polling stations
- opening postal votes
- counting votes
- supporting the running of elections
You can find out more about the roles on offer in the following sections.
Polling station staff
There will be 67 polling stations open on polling day.
Each station is supervised by a presiding officer. In larger stations, the presiding officer may also have a deputy presiding officer to assist them.
The number of poll clerks at each station will vary depending on the number of electors. New presiding officers and deputy presiding officers will generally be selected on previous experience, such as working as a poll clerk or in other relevant roles.
No experience is necessary to be a poll clerk, although it is helpful, as is experience of voter registration canvassing.
Presiding officers are responsible for the conduct of the ballot in the polling station and they should have a sound knowledge of the voting procedures.
They have overall responsibility for the polling station and the supervision of other members of the polling station team.
Deputy presiding officers assist the presiding officer and may take on presiding officer duties during polling day or at short notice. They are only appointed at larger stations.
Poll clerks assist the presiding officer by checking and marking the register of electors as each voter is issued their ballot paper. Poll clerks also help set up and close down the polling station at the beginning and end of the day.
Polling station opening hours
Polling stations will be open for voting from 7am to 10pm.
Polling station staff must be able to report to their polling station by 6:15am at the latest, and maybe earlier at some stations (you will be told if this is the case).
Fees (including attending training): To be confirmed.
For guidance, the fees for polling station staff in 2022 were:
- £380.29 for presiding officers
- £324.45 for deputy presiding officers
- £268.61 for poll clerks.
Polling station staff training
All polling station staff will receive training before working at a polling station. More details will be provided if you are appointed.
Training dates are still to be confirmed, but will likely be in late March or early April.
We will not be able to let you work on polling day if you do not attend a training session.
Postal vote opening staff
Postal vote staff:
- open postal vote packs
- check paperwork has been completed correctly
- and count the numbers of packs and votes returned.
Sessions will take place daily within normal office hours from around 15 April at Cobbs Hall, Fulham Palace Road, London, SW6 6LL (the date and venue subject to change).
On election day (Thursday 2 May) there will be another session to open postal votes at 10pm.
We have a wide range of other interesting jobs, all of which are vital to running a smooth election.
These vary from office jobs to preparing equipment for polling stations. We pay an hourly rate – depending on the type of job – and the work is usually done outside of work hours and at weekends.
If you are flexible and don’t mind rolling up your sleeves, we would like to hear from you.
We will email members of the support team as and when work arises.
These posts are not full-day (am and pm) positions – jobs will only last a few hours or over a weekend.
The London Mayor and GLA elections will take place on Thursday 2 May 2024.
We do not know when the next general election will be, but it must be held by January 2025. This means it might be held on the same day as the GLA elections.
The general election date is a decision made by the Prime Minister. We do not have any special knowledge about when it might be. So, as a contingency, we are planning for a combined GLA and general election, as well as going ahead with plans for the scheduled GLA elections.
We are doing this because it is easier to stand down plans for a combined election than it is to ramp up plans in the event of a general election being called.
The counts will take place at Olympia London.
The count for the GLA election will be on Friday 3 and Saturday 4 May. Sunday 5 May will be held as a contingency day in case counting is not completed on Saturday.
If there is also a general election, the count will be held:
- overnight from Thursday 2 into Friday 3 May
- daytime on Friday 3 May
- Sunday 5 May.
If you are interested in working on the count, please bear the above in mind.
Count team leaders are responsible for supervising the counting staff and overseeing the count for their allocated electoral area.
Ideally, you will have:
- previous count experience
- a good head for figures
- be well organised
- able to work accurately under pressure.
Counting staff are required to sort and count the ballot papers.
Fees for count staff are still to be confirmed.
Apply online to register your interest in working the London elections.