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Recruitment to the Civil Service is governed by the Public Service Management (Recruitment and Appointments) Act 2004 which established the Commission for Public Service Appointments (CSPA) and the Public Appointments Service (PAS).

The CPSA sets the standards to apply to the recruitment of persons for positions in the Civil Service and certain other public service bodies.

The PAS acts as the centralised recruitment, assessment and selection body for the Civil Service and provides a similar service, where requested, to the local authorities, the HSE, the Garda Síochána and certain other public service bodies.

All open recruitment competitions run by the Public Appointments Service (PAS) are advertised in one or more of the national papers and on the PAS website.

There is also provision for atypical recruitment, whereby a Government Department or Office may, under licence from the CPSA and in accordance with strict standards of probity, conduct its own recruitment process.

The facility has been availed of by a number of offices.