Application Guidance Notes

The following information has been prepared to assist you in applying to work at the National Portrait Gallery and to provide a brief overview of the recruitment process.

Please read these guidance notes in full before completing the application form.

We base our shortlisting decisions on the information contained in the application form so it is important that you complete all sections of the form.

Recruitment Information Pack 

For each job that we advertise on our website we will provide a recruitment pack containing the following information:

  • How to Apply
  • About the National Portrait Gallery
  • Job Advert, Job Description and Person Specification
  • Employment Terms and Benefits

The job description outlines the main duties and responsibilities of the post and the person specification lists the skills, knowledge and experience we are looking for in the successful candidate. You should make sure that you meet all the essential criteria before submitting an application.

Application Form 

All applicants must complete the Gallery application form when applying for a vacancy rather than sending a CV. Please note that CVs will not be accepted. The application form can be downloaded from our website in Word or PDF format, or requested by emailing

Please clearly write your full name and contact details and check that you have put the title of the job you are applying for on the application form. If you need to use any additional sheets to complete your application, please ensure that these are also clearly marked with your name and the post that you are applying for.

The Employment History section should include all of your previous posts including any voluntary posts or work experience. You should include a couple of sentences about your main responsibilities and duties in each position, your salary and your reason for leaving.

In the Educational Qualifications section you should give details of all of the relevant qualifications you have obtained and list the results. There is a separate section on the form where you can list any relevant training you have received (vocational or non-vocational).

You are asked to supply a supporting statement as part of your application. Your statement should include all relevant information on what you bring to the role and how you meet the criteria of the person specification.  You might find it helpful to deal with each of the points in the person specification separately so that you make sure that all have been covered.

Equality Monitoring Form 

This form is used to monitor the National Portrait Gallery's equality policy and practices. It is completely confidential and will not be seen by anyone making short listing decisions. It is essential that this form is completed along with the application form.

Shortlisting and Interviews 

Shortlisting for interview will take place as soon as possible after the closing. Shortlisting will be based upon how closely candidates have demonstrated they meet the criteria set out in the job description and person specification.

We receive a high volume of applications and are therefore unable to respond to all applicants. If you have not had a response to your application by the interview date stated in the recruitment information pack you should assume that you have been unsuccessful on this occasion.

We try to indicate in the recruitment information pack when the interviews will be held. If you are unable to attend the interview on the given date you must state so on your application form so that we can try to make alternative arrangements should you be shortlisted. Shortlisted candidates will be normally contacted by phone and email and given details of the interview date, time, location and any special requirements.

If you have a disability and need a reasonable adjustment to be made to the process or venue, please advise us at the time you receive notification that you have been shortlisted for interview.

Returning Your Application Form 

Please make sure that you sign and date your completed form before returning it to:

By email:

By post:

HR Department
National Portrait Gallery 
2 St Martin's Place 

If you are delivering your application by hand, please take it to the reception desk at 39-45 Orange Street, London, WC2H 0HE.

Please note that applications will not be accepted if submitted after the closing date.

To ensure the best possible use of our limited resources we are unable to respond to every application.  If you have not had a response to your application by the advertised interview date, please assume that you have been unsuccessful on this occasion.

Thank you for your time and effort in returning your application form.