Oriel: How to Preference Foundation Training Programs

Advice & Insight From Pre-Registration Recruitment Exam Specialists

After applying, you’ll need to sit both sit tests (SJT and Numeracy, with the possible addition of MMIs depending on program’s choices this year), and of course ‘preference’ your programs. Here, we will work through what this means, and how you should go about doing it.

Viewing Programs

Before you can apply to any programs, and therefore well before you can preference them, you’ll need to see which programs interest you. From the end of the first week of June, you can see all the Foundation Training programmes being recruited for through the England and Wales National Recruitment Scheme. You should look at them as early as you can, to understand both what’s on offer, and what interests you. You can filter the programs through a variety of different factors, including what they’re recruiting for, the employer name or training program, the employer type, the size of the organisation, the specialty, whether they offer a skilled worker visa, the region, location, and the number of placements. When you’ve found programs that you are interested in, it’s time to preference them.

What is preferencing?

Preferencing is the process through which you rank the programs that you are interested in, using Oriel. Remember that there are a significant number of places being recruited for, so it’s vital to review and ensure that you have given adequate thought to the program that you are interested in. Typically, you should preference a robust number of different programs – in the past, applicants have not been offered places simply because they did not preference enough programmes, or they only preferenced very popular programs – equally, others were given offers that they felt they had to take, simply because they preferenced programs that they did not like, and in the end received offers from those programs. You must therefore consider whether you are interested in a program. Can you see yourself working there? If you receive an offer, would you actually want it? Do you believe that the location, the hours, the commute, or the city are realistic for you? Is the program content suitable? There are a lot of factors to consider, and you should ensure that you make an informed decision. Try to review programs before the preferencing window if at all possible – you can do so through visiting employer websites or attending open days. You can find links through your university, through NHS sites, or through previous applicants. In general, it has been found that hospital and multi-sector placements places were very competitive, which was shown by the high fill rate. This means that you should preference as widely as possible to maximise your chance of securing a place, if you wish to follow this path. You can find information about fill rates through the National Foundation Training website.

When you first look at the preferencing section of your application, all the programmes listed will sit within the No Preference category – you must then move them into either ‘not wanted’ or ‘preference’. You will then rank the programs within ‘preference.’

When is the preferencing window for Oriel? What do I need to do during the Oriel preferencing window?

During this period, you need to ‘preference’ all the Foundation Training programmes that you are willing to accept. You will therefore need to log into your Oriel account and use the preferencing page to do this – it will allow you to choose from the programs. As stated above, you are able to filter them using a variety of different methods, and should also have conducted some research already. You will receive an Oriel notification when the preferencing window is open.

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You should also be aware of enhanced preferencing – this is relevant after offers have been made, and is designed to allow an opportunity for applicants to change their preferences at a late stage. For those who have been accepted into a program, they can select upgrade options – this could be programs that were originally ranked higher, and additionally those that were ranked lower (if they have changed their mind). For applicants who have not received an offer, they will be able to amend their preferences until the last round of offers. Indeed, they can not only re-rank programs that they had preferenced, but they can also move preferences from within the ‘No Preference’ and ‘Not Wanted’ categories. Enhanced preferencing takes place between offer rounds and applicants are informed via Oriel when the service is available.

Oriel: How to Preference Foundation Training Programs

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