Working at elections

During election or referendums, the election office, on behalf of the Returning Officer, employ staff to work with us including;

  • Polling Clerks and Presiding Officers at polling stations
  • Enumerators / Counting Assistants at the count
  • Assistants to assist with opening and processing of postal votes

Polling Clerks and Presiding Officers

These staff are employed to carry out duties at polling stations across Moray. Staff are responsible for making sure that the proper procedure for issuing ballot papers and voting is followed in polling stations.  Polling Clerks assist the Presiding Officer who oversees the polling station. To become a Presiding Officer you must have previously have experience as a polling clerk.

On polling day, staff are required to work from approx. 6.30am until 10:15pm without leaving the polling place. Staff are required to attend a one hour training session in Elgin or online, a few weeks before the poll, usually in held at lunchtime or early evening. Staff are provided with a procedural guidance handbook and other information.

Count staff (Manual)

Staff are employed to assist in manually counting the votes on ballot papers as enumerators and count supervisors. This role requires high levels of concentration and accuracy. Staff may be required to stand for long periods of time, work under pressure and typically work through the night from 9:30pm onwards, usually in Elgin. Sometimes counts are undertaken through the day following the election.
Other auxilliary roles are also available at the count assisting with the incoming polling station equipment and ballot boxes, checking and sorting under the direction of supervisors.

eCount Staff (Local Government 2022 only)

Staff are employed to assist in the operation of the electronic counting of the ballot papers. Roles include computer operators, verification and adjudication assistants, and scanner operators which require use of scanners and computers. In addition there will be more manual roles, including ballot paper runners and team supervisors.

Staff will typically work through the day from 9am onwards, the day after polling day, in Elgin.

Full training will be provided, which will be at least two day sessions, a few weeks prior to election, usually in Aberdeen (transport provided) and another session during the week of the election at the count venue.

Postal vote staff

Staff are employed to assist with the daily opening and processing of returned postal votes in the fortnight prior to polling day. This work takes place usually at Council Offices, Elgin from 9:30am throughout the day, typically for 4-5 hours once the daily delivery is received. Some posts are manual and some posts require the ability to use a scanner and computer. Full training will be given.


  • You must be at least 18 years of age to work with the election office at the polling station and the count, and from 16 to work in postal vote processing. due to the hours involved.
  • Election staff cannot work on behalf of a candidate during an election campaign, nor be related to a prospective candidate, nor work or volunteer on behalf of a referendum campaign.
  • Only individuals who have the right to work in the UK are eligible to work at elections. Proof of right to work will be required.
  • Election staff will be required to sign up to the statutory 'Requirement for Secrecy' preserving the secrecy of the vote when they are appointed.

Rates of pay

The rates of pay for election staff vary depending on the job role and the type of poll. All fees are subject to tax and will be reviewed annually. Mileage allowance will be paid on applicable posts.

Typically fees are as follows

  • polling clerk fee - £160.00 
  • enumerator fee - £125.00
  • postal vote staff are paid an hourly rate starting at £9.30 per hr, varies with role

Supervisor roles will be paid a higher fee dependent on the role being undertaken.

How to apply

If you would like to be considered for work at future elections, would like more information or an application form

  • download and print the application form and guidance notes for more information and guidance on applying (PDF)

Application Guidance notes               Election Staff Application form

Or for a hard copy of the form to be sent to you; 

  • email with your name and postal address 
  • contact the election helpline 01343 563334 and give your details to the contact centre staff 

Please note that submitting an application form is not a guarantee of employment, we will keep your details on file and contact you before the next scheduled election. Where polls are scheduled we will contact you 4-5 months in advance to canvass staff to ask if you wish to work at the forthcoming elections, usually held in May or June. If a poll is called we will allocate staff to vacancies appropriate to their location and preferred role.

Information on forthcoming elections can be found here. By-elections, referendums or snap general elections may occur at any time.

Data Protection

The election office provide a number of services to a range of people and in some cases these rely on us collecting and using information about individuals. Everything we do with that information has to comply with data protection legislation. Below follows  information on our data protection practices through a series of privacy notice relevant to a number of parties.These notices are used to inform you of details about the information we collect, why we collect it, what we use it for, who we share it with, and what rights you have about the information we hold about you.

Privacy Notice - Temporary election staff (PDF, 207kB)

Contact Us

Elections Office
Council Offices
High Street

01343 563334

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