This section answers many of the questions regularly asked about the ACE process and is updated throughout the intake. ACE strongly recommend reviewing these questions, as well as the ACE applicant guide and other content on this site, to fully understand the ACE programme. We also post regular updates and answers to common questions during an intake on the ACE RMO Facebook page. Checkout ACE RMO Facebook to ask questions and view important updates.
How do I apply to ACE?
You can register with ACE and create a profile at any time here. Once applications open, you will then be able to start your ACE application. You can access this application and amend any part of until applications close. Your application status MUST be complete at the close-off date to be considered for the next stage. Note that there is no “submit” button for the ACE process, you can confirm your application status by reviewing your checklist.
What do I need to do to complete my ACE application?
- Confirm you meet the ACE eligibility criteria
- Answer all questions in the application form
- Upload your up-to-date CV
- Upload a copy of your certified academic transcript
- Upload any clinical results/dean’s commendations (optional)
- Attach certified copies of your citizenship or residency documents
- Supply three complete references
- Preference, in order, the employers you wish to work for
- Attach cover letters for the employers you wish to work for (optional)
Full details on what is required as part of your ACE application can be found in the Application Process section.
Who can certify my documents?
Who can complete my ACE reference forms?
ACE references must be completed by an SMO or Consultant who is vocationally registered in the specialty they are working, or a General Practitioner (GP’s who are not vocationally registered can be used as referees for the ACE application).
In the case that a supervising SMO or Consultant is vocationally registered overseas, they must be registered in a comparable health country (as outlined by MCNZ) to be eligible to supply a reference for you.
ACE only accepts references obtained from your TI year/final year placements where the referee has observed your skills in a clinical setting.
In exceptional circumstances, where a trainee intern (TI) or final year medical student is going on an overseas elective during the first half of their TI year ACE will allow the graduate to supply ONE reference which is an exception to the above requirements.
In these cases ACE will accept:
- One of these 3 references from the second half of a graduates fifth year.
- One reference from a graduates elective provided it is from a hospital that is included in the MCNZ list of comparable health system countries. Following an amendment to the ACE Business rules, applicants completing an elective in a non-comparable health country can use a reference from that placement if their clinical supervisor possess a current New Zealand practising certificate and have a vocational scope of practice with either the New Zealand Medical Council, Australian Medical Council, General Medical Council (GMC) or Irish Medical Councils.
Applicants going on an overseas elective must supply 2 further references from supervising clinicians in their final/TI year.
How do I nominate referees in my ACE application?
You will need to nominate 3 referees in your ACE application. Before doing so, it is important that you discuss with them and obtain their agreement to act as your referee. Once you nominate this person and enter their contact e-mail address in your on-line application, an automatic e-mail is sent with instructions on how to log-in to the on-line reference form and complete your reference. Consequently, your referee must be available online. Once a reference has been completed and received, it cannot be changed
If it is not possible for your referee to submit an online reference, ACE can upload a hard copy reference on your behalf; however it is your responsibility to ensure that your reference has been received and uploaded by the ACE office. A copy of the reference form can be obtained from the ACE Resources section and you may provide this to your referee should they wish to see a hard copy.
The applicants are allowed to choose references from different settings e.g. mix of GP, hospital based(different clinical attachments), laboratory based, community setting.
What if I will not be able to commence at the start of the training year?
It is preferred that you be available to commence employment at the start of the relevant training year. However, if this is not possible you will need to indicate this and the reason in your ACE application and Cover Letter. Your details will be sent to the employers you preference and your application will be marked as a late start. Employers will then have the option to rank your application or not. If an employer is unable to accommodate a late start they are not obligated to rank you.
Should an applicant be made aware AFTER the ACE match that they are unable to commence on time it is vital they speak with the employer they were matched with as soon as possible.
What are the selection criteria that the employers use to rank the applicants?
ACE encourages the applicants to get in touch with employers directly to find out about their selection criteria.
Employers are sent the provided information and documents from all applicants who have preferred them, as well as an individual score based on a nationally agreed scoring scale taking into account University grades/distinctions/awards, additional qualifications, publications/presentations and references. However, not all employers take this into consideration in their selection of first year House Officers, each employer will have and use their own local selection criteria. For more details on what each DHB's requirements are and further information on individual selection criteria, please refer to the DHB Information sheets under the Employer Information page on this website.
What happens if I am matched to a DHB that I don't want to work at?
You can only be matched to one of the employers you have nominated and preferred in your application. As such, there is an expectation that you will accept the offer of employment at the hospital you are matched to. If you wish to decline a position you have been offered, note that you will not be given another opportunity to be matched to any other employer in that intake or the following or to be placed into the ACE talent pool. To minimise the chances of this happening, we recommend you only preference employers you are willing to accept a position with. However, because you are required to rank a minimum of 6 employers, we recommend you clearly state in your cover letter if you are in a situation whereby you are unable to move to a different employer region. Employers can then try to take this into consideration when assessing your application. Please note this is not guaranteed and may reduce your chances to obtain a position
I've been matched to an employer, what are the next steps?
If you have been successfully matched to an employer through the ACE scheme, you will first be informed via e-mail from ACE. The employer you were matched to may then contact you to complete any safety checks and on then you will be sent a formal offer directly by the same employer. You will have seven days to accept or decline the offer. From then on, matched employers will liaise with you directly to organise further pre-employment documents.
I would like to re apply through ACE. Am I eligible?
Some applicants may be eligible to re apply provided they meet the following criteria:
- They are an NZ Medical School graduate and are an NZ or Australian Citizen/Permanent Resident (Category 1).
- They have not held a first year House Office position previously
- They have not previously been matched through the ACE process.
- They are re applying in the intake immediately following their first application/ final medical year.
Note: An applicant who has decided not to apply through the ACE scheme during their final Year of Medical School will only be eligible to apply for the intake immediately following the completion of their final exam.
What is a Permanent Resident Visa?
The applicants must be permanent resident visa holders (i.e. they must have a permanent resident visa which entitles them to stay in New Zealand indefinitely and not a resident visa with travel conditions) at the time of the application.
If you hold a resident visa and not a permanent resident visa, then please choose " New Zealand Resident Visa " under "What is your residency/citizenship status?" in your application.
Please contact Immigration New Zealand if you are unsure or have questions about what type of visa you hold.
Click on this link to read about difference between permanet resident visa and resident visa : http://kb.immigration.govt.nz/item/3704
VCA 2014 and Exception to Clean Slate
All RMOs (House Officers and Registrars) are deemed to be “Core” Children’s workers.
The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 sets clear expectations for consistent safety checking across the children’s workforce so that people who work with children will keep them safe. The DHBs nationally are committed to having all of their children’s workforce safety checked, and if applying for a position with DHBs via ACE you can expect that safety checking will be completed prior to employment.
From a Police Vetting perspective, if an applicant's role predominantly involves the care and protection of a child, or youth (aged 16 or under) then they must be vetted under Exception to Clean Slate vetting criteria.
The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 has amended the Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act 2004 to facilitate the operation of the Workforce Restriction. Where a person has a conviction for a specified offence, and is applying for (or continuing in) a role as a core children’s worker, any convictions for offences specified in Schedule 2 of the VCA will be disclosed in the vetting result.
All applicants must declare in their ACE application whether they have been convicted including discharged without conviction as a result of criminal charges in New Zealand or any other country. Under NZ law, employers are able to conduct police vetting checks on all successful applicants who accept a position. Prior to employment the employer will ask the applicant to sign a “consent to disclosure” form allowing the police to release all information re: that individual. For more information go to; NZ Legislation website.
Click here http://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/health-workforce/childrens-action-plan-childrens-worker-safety-checking-and-child-protection-policies to read more about the VCA 2014.
Will I get ranked by all the DHBs that I have preferred in my application?
The DHBs will review and assess all the applications that they receive, however they might only rank applicants who they think are suitable to work at their DHBs. This means that even if you have preferred a DHB, they might not rank you. This is a very important information to remember when you get you match results.
What are the next steps for unmatched applicants and what is the Talent Pool?
All unmatched applicants are placed in the Talent Pool automatically. The Talent Pool is a list of all unmatched applicants maintained by ACE which is released to the DHBs at the end of each Intake. The DHBs use the Talent Pool to fill any subsequent PGY1 positions that may be available during the year. There is no category priority applied to the applicants in the talent pool and the DHBs can review and select any applicant that they feel is suitable for employment at their DHB.
Following the accepts and declines (check under important dates) if you are prepared to accept jobs with other DHBs that you had not initially ranked in your application you can write to the recruitment contacts at those DHBs and let them know that you are on the talent pool and are prepared to work for them should a vacancy arise. The contact information for ACE employers can be found on the ACE nursing website. We also recommend that you check the DHBs career websites and Kiwi Health Job website regularly for any additional vacancies.
ACE will accept any new/updated documents including references from the applicants who are in the Talent Pool and will add it to their application on the ACE system. All new documents will be available to the DHBs via the Talent Pool.
Please note that any new references that are submitted must be completed on the ACE reference form. Once the new references are added to your talent pool application, the old reference forms will no longer be accessible.
What information do the DHBs receive from ACE for the ranking and selection process?
The employers(DHBs) receive the complete application including all the documents submitted and all information entered in the online application. Everything included in your application under each section is accessible to the DHBs for the ranking process.
ACE does not hold back any documents or any information included in the online application.