the application process
The application process
We receive in excess of 10,000 applications each year and have around 1,500 staff members from previous years wanting to return so it's very competitive to join the PGL team!
This page is here to help you with your application and make sure that your application doesn’t just impress us, but also that all of the information you put on the form is correct so that we can process your application and hopefully – get back to you quickly with a job offer!
For our Activity Instructor/Group Leader roles, we receive a ratio of ten applications for every available position so you'll need to make your application really stand out! We look for people with previous experience of working or volunteering with young people for these roles - scouts, guides, youth groups, sports coaching are all fantastic opportunities to gain this experience, plus you can also ask the group's leader to be one of your three referees.
To apply for work at PGL you must be at least 16 years old, however, if you wish to work in a residential, guest-facing role, you must be aged 18 by the start of your contract (you can still apply when you are 17). Applications will only be considered from those legally entitled to work in the UK. With the exception of a few specific roles, you will need to be available to work for at least 12 weeks – but in general, the longer you can work, the better!
Please make sure you have read our FAQ’s page before applying as you may find the answers to any queries you might have there.
If you are applying from outside the EU, you may find our ‘Useful information for overseas applicants’ helpful. Plus, don't forget to read our Top Tips for Applying and remember to include your additional documentation (NGB certificates; proof of legal entitlement to work in the UK etc.).
You need to create your own MyPGL account to access our online application form. Due to the volume of applications we receive each year, we ask everyone to apply the same way so please don't email your CV to us as unfortunately we can't accept it as a method of application.
You should use the application form to tell us as much as possible about your experience, your interests, formal qualifications and why you want to work for PGL – everything that will convince us that you should be a team member.
The form takes around 30 minutes to complete, but it ’s a good idea to have all the information you need – such as your education history and work experience, three referee contact details and, if you’re applying for outside of the EU, a scanned copy of your UK visa – before you begin. Make sure you tell PGL just how wonderful you are and how much of a difference you can make to our guests. Of course, you’ll need to back up your claims with real evidence; looking back at times where you’ve demonstrated just how amazing you are.
Please take the time to complete all sections in full - it's often not possible to progress to the next section of the form until you have completed the current section. You can find help text by questions marked with a blue help icon - hover your mouse over these for more information.
Our online application form will take approximately 30 minutes to complete and does not require you to download or install any programmes or files. There is a 'timeout' feature in place for your own security. This kicks in after 15 minutes of inactivity on a page so you will need to login once more, however the form will save the majority of information you have entered up to that point.
In order to complete the form, you will need the following information to hand:
- Which position(s)you would like to apply for
- Your education history and qualifications
- Your employment history
- Information about your skills, qualifications and positions of responsibility
- Contact details for three referees to support your application
- Your National Insurance number (if you are a UK resident)
- Your National Governing Body certificates and membership numbers (includes BCU, RYA etc qualifications)
- Five years' worth of addresses (including postcodes) for your DBS application
- If you are applying from outside the UK, you will need to obtain a certificate of good conduct/police check from your native country prior to applying
- If you are applying from outside the EU, you will need to upload a scanned copy of your UK Work Permit/Visa to show us that you are eligible to be employed by us. You will need to obtain this prior to applying; we're not able to obtain this on your behalf.
This is the section of the form where you can tell us about yourself, how wonderful you are and generally convince us that we should employ you!
Please give us examples of your experience related to the job role(s) that you are applying for.
If you have had a telephone interview and we have made you a job offer, we will then contact your referees. These are vitally important and if you are offered a position with PGL, you won’t be able to start working for us until we have received at least 1 of these back. Once you have started work, you will not be able to pass your probationary period on centre until we received a 2nd reference for you. Therefore, please inform your referees that we may be in touch very soon so they know to return our reference form email as quickly as possible.
Please also pay careful attention to the reference details you supply us with - your referees must be people who have known you in a professional capacity during the last three years such as college/university tutors, current employers, former employers, guide/scout/youth group leaders etc. One of you references must be from your most recent employer and if you have applied to work with PGL as an Instructor, Group leader or Language Tutor, you must supply a referee from your most recent period working with children (employment or voluntary).
We cannot accept references from friends or family members, nor can we accept personal email addresses, e.g. Hotmail, Yahoo, Googlemail, BT connect, Live etc. Email addresses must be from a professional organisation, charity or establishment e.g. email@example.com.
Failure to supply us with three suitable referees will delay your application being processed.
You need to send/scan and email photocopies of any qualifications you list on your application to the PGL Recruitment Team to show us proof.
You can upload scanned in copies from your computer and attach these to your application in the 'Upload Documents' section. These need to be Word Docs, Jpg files or PDFs smaller than 10MB.
To work at PGL you must receive satisfactory disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service - this is the new name for the Criminal Records Bureau. PGL covers the cost of this. As soon as you submit your online application form, you will receive on screen instructions on how to complete your DBS form so that it comes through to us ... and so that we can pay for it!
We are not able to accept existing valid DBS disclosures as our policy is to obtain these for all staff about to work for us.
We do this to ensure that our guests and staff are happy and safe. Minor, irrelevant misdemeanours are unlikely to affect your application to work with us as each disclosure is looked at on an individual basis.
Once you have submitted your application form to us, we will email you confirmation that we have received it. In this email, you will be given details on how to apply for your DBS clearance.
You must apply for your DBS clearance in order for your PGL job application to be processed.
This will not cost you anything - PGL will pay for your DBS check.
If you then wish to check the status of your application, you can simply click on the links within the top left-hand panel of your My PGL account. These links change depending on which stage your application is at in the application process.
We will contact your referees straight away. You will be able to track the progress of your references via the link in the top left hand panel of your My PGL homepage when you log in. If you see that we have requested references but these haven't yet been returned to us, you are welcome to politely encourage your referee to complete our form.
Providing your references are satisfactory and we are able to match your skills, experience and dates when you are available with a vacancy, you will be offered a job.
Please note: Priority will be given to applicants with the earliest start dates.
If you have any specific questions about your application please call 0844 3710 123 (or +44 1989 767833 from outside the UK) to speak to a Recruitment Officer.
Note: It is possible to attach any documents to your on-line application. If you can't scan these in and attached them to your application, any documents should be forwarded to the PGL Recruitment Team separately by post. Any correspondence should include your name and your unique PGL reference number on each page of additional documentation you send in.
Please post any documents relating to your application to:
PGL Recruitment Team
PGL Travel Ltd
Or scan and email your supporting documents to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Key PGL Facts
Need more convincing to apply? Surely not, but if so – here are a few ‘must know’ key facts:
- we employ over 3,000 people every year
- over 400,000 guests visit a PGL centre every year
- we are old! We have been providing activity holidays since 1957 (almost 60 years)
- we have the most competitive staff package
- we are the employer of choice within the outdoor activity industry!