Appointing adult volunteers

You can enter information on adult volunteers when they first join, or when they change role, direct into Compass, our membership database; Disclosure and Barring Service checks are also initiated on line. If you need to record the details off line, you can download the Adult Information Form or collect copies of the forms from the District Scout Centre.
For advice on procedures, contact Arthur Brighton (address as in the District Directory).

Group Scout Leaders, Commissioners and Administrators are able to enter a new adult’s details directly into Compass, thus speeding up the time taken for the appointments process. You can enter initial information about the new adult and the data needed to complete a disclosure check. This gives the new adult pre-provisional status but any further progress in the appointments process requires the intervention of the Appointments Secretary. Make sure you check with the Appointments Secretary to make sure that the application is proceeding smoothly.

The Adult Information Form captures the initial data needed for adding a new adult to Compass. However, it does not include space to capture identity details required for disclosures checks, as this information needs to be input onto the system  by the person checking the identity (if necessary the identity check can be recorded on the ID Checking Form – download here or collect copies from the District Scout Centre).

Disclosure checks

Adult volunteers who participate in regulated activity require a disclosure check. The Scout Association has reviewed all volunteer roles against the criteria for regulated activity which is defined as:

Teaching, training or instruction of children, carried out by the same person frequently (once a week or more often), or on four or more days in a thirty day period, or overnight


Day to day management or supervision on a regular basis of a person providing this activity which would be regulated if unsupervised

Some roles fall outside regulated activity and do not require a disclosure check. The remainder meet the requirements of the legislation and will require an appropriate level of disclosure check. Compass helps to automate this process: when an adult volunteer is assigned a role it will know what checks need to be processed. Renewal reminders will also be automated for those roles that require it.

Adult volunteers who work with vulnerable 18-25 year olds in Scouting need a disclosure that is checked against both the adult and child register. This can be arranged on that volunteer’s behalf by contacting

When a new adult is entered onto the system there will be two options for disclosure checks:

  • One option is available if the applicant has their identification documentation with them.
  • If the applicant does not have any identification documentation with them and they have an email address then they can be sent an email with a temporary username and password which allows them to log into the disclosures system and choose the identification documentation they have available which meets the minimum requirements. Once they have selected sufficient identification the system will inform them of this; they can then arrange a meeting with the person initiating the disclosure who will then check and verify the identification documents.

References (if appropriate)

Reference requests can be automatically emailed to the referees from Compass. Make sure that you arrange for the references to be sent to the Appointments Secretary, who will update the references section within the system. Wherever possible, please try to nominate referees with email addresses! However, if the referee does not have an email address a manual process can still be used, with Compass being updated once the references have been received. We can also deal with email references outside of Compass and this provides a more personal feel to the process. Check with the Appointments Secretary.


Compass is a free, secure tool from The Scout Association to help you keep track of your adult Members in the Scouts.

Researched, developed and tested with Members in a range of Scout roles, Compass can perform a range of functions to make many aspects of Scout admin quicker and easier to manage in one place. The system safely stores data about adult members and allows you to perform useful tasks with that information.

There is a videogiving an overview of Compass.

The support site at has been set up to help you use Compass. It provides a range of guides and resources, all of which aim to answer any questions you may have, helping you to complete processes you need to carry out as part of your role. Use the menu along the top of the page on the support site to navigate and explore the  help available.


If you have any queries which are not answered on the support site or by someone locally, please contact the Scout Information Centre and they will assist you with any queries. You can reach them via email at or via phone on 020 8433 7100. Normal opening hours are 8am-7pm weekdays and 9am-12 noon on Saturdays.


Compass has been designed to be compliant with the UK’s data protection requirements and undergone rigorous independent security testing. The Scout Association currently holds the ISO27001:2013 standard for the administration and support of Scouting activities by the staff of The Scout Association based at Gilwell Park. Information security and data protection experts have also engaged in the testing and development of Compass to ensure it meets all relevant legislation.

Data Protection

Download guidance on data protection (including handling personal data and use of social media and photography).

Put your phone down and what are you left with? Just teamwork, courage and the skills to succeed.’
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout Bear Grylls