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How to Become a Police Officer in the UK

How to become a Police Officer. Job Description: Police Officers are persons who are responsible for the upholding of the law.  Police Officers are generally expected to be reasonable, fair, Level -headed and willing to work unsociable hours and capable of remaining calm in stressful situations. The hours vary, but tend to be 8-12 hour shifts. Being a Police Officer is a good job for many people, but the key traits to have are a sociable personality, helpful, intuitive, a good sense of humour and calm under pressure. You must be aware of the laws of the United Kingdom, and not be prejudiced towards anyone.


Entry Requirements

To become a Police Officer you must be a British Citizen, EC/EEA National, Commonwealth citizen or a foreign national with no restrictions on your stay in the UK. You will be subject to a CRB check to ensure that you have no serious convictions. You don’t require formal qualifications as the Police force set their own entry tests, including a written test. As there is a huge demand for policing roles, any experience you can show of community service such as local volunteering or community based experience will go in your favour.

Responsibilities and Duties

Standard duties vary dependent on the type of Police Officer you are. Beat police officers are responsible for patrolling an area as a visual deterrent and to be a first point of contact for residents on your beat should they have any issues or problems that need attending to. You will also be responsible for maintaining a community presence and relationship. Desk officers are responsible for the processing of paperwork and things such as crime reports and lost property logging. They are responsible for the deployment of officers to non-emergency calls. Attending officers are responsible for gathering as much evidence as they can when a crime has been alleged and supporting victims. Detectives are charged with the responsibility to look at the evidence and try and establish who committed the crime and bring them to justice. Custody officers are in charge of the holding cells in a station.

Working Hours

These may vary depending on the duties and job you are doing.  Many Police Officer Jobs can be 9-5, whilst just as many can be out of hours. Usual shift length is 12 hours. Many officers are expected to work weekends and evenings. Shifts are always rota based so that there is an even coverage of officers.

Skills and Training Development

Police Officers can expect to progress through their careers with improving skills and knowledge as well as time served. You may find yourself buddied up with trainee officers that are employed alongside you. If you experience other departments within the force you may find yourself being trained into promoted roles. You may choose to study additional subjects such as mental health awareness to assist in gaining such a promotion.

Average Salary

The average salary for a Trainee Police Officer is £21,000 PA.
The average salary for a qualified Police Officer is £30,000 PA.

photo by: marlco

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