The job of being a police officer is an extremely challenging and rewarding career and no two days are ever the same.
On any given shift you could be responding to an emergency call, carrying out a search warrant, arresting a drug dealer or being a reassuring face to a victim of domestic abuse. On your next shift you could be patrolling in the local community, helping vulnerable people, interviewing a suspect in custody, or giving evidence in court.
Policing is not purely about enforcement, your communication skills and ability to build relationships with the public will be key.
You’ll need determination, patience, and the ability to champion those around you.
Policing is one career, with countless opportunities. You can progress through the ranks or specialise in an area that interests you. You could become a detective, join our firearms or roads policing units or one of our public protection teams.
Wherever you decide to take your career, we will support you and help you develop to be the best officer you can be.
As a police constable with a degree, you can earn a salary starting from £28,551 rising to £46,044 over seven-years.
You'll also benefit from the following:
a police pension scheme
a generous annual leave entitlement which increases as part of your service
support for a good work-life balance with family friendly policies
being a part of a wider police family
access to officer and staff associations, active groups and networks
enhanced maternity benefits
24/7 wellbeing support and advice for professional and personal matters
access to discounts schemes via Bluelight Card
A police officer’s role is demanding and diverse.
You’re the one everyone looks to for help.
It is a big decision to join, and this isn’t your average nine to five.
We’re looking for people who have the judgement to make quick decisions; have great people skills; can show compassion and empathy to help those in need; who’ll have their colleagues back no matter what and the resilience to serve the community every single day.
Consider whether you can:
deal with the complex and sensitive cases, requiring clear reasoning and evidence gathering
think on your feet – problem solve and respond to new challenges
develop new skills as data and technology become ever more important to policing
work well with colleagues as part of an effective team
offer great people skills, remaining calm and patient with members of the public, particularly in stressful or volatile situations
handle traumatic situations and be able to communicate information sensitively
be decisive and use your police powers appropriately
give clear and accurate evidence in court
work shifts, nights and weekends (including public holidays)
be flexible about where you work - you might not work in your preferred location
be willing and able to meet the academic demands and deadlines throughout the programme
You’ll receive training and support throughout your career to help you manage the demands of policing, but it’s important to be sure that becoming a police officer is right for you.
There are three main routes to becoming a police officer.
Don't have a degree? The Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA) is for you.
Already got a degree? The Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP) is for you.
Want to study before you apply? The Professional Policing Degree (PPD) is for you.
be aged 17 or over (on the day you submit your application). You will need to be 18 years or over by your first day.
have been a UK resident for the past three years.
be a British or Commonwealth citizen, or an EC/European Economic Area national, or a foreign national whose stay in the UK is unrestricted.
have a full UK manual driving licence (by the time of appointment).
not have six penalty points or more on your driving licence.
be prepared to work shifts including nights, weekends and bank holidays
not have tattoos which could cause offence.
not be registered bankrupt (or have bankruptcy debts that have been discharged within the past three years).
be able to pass a job-related fitness test
be able to pass a medical screening and meet the minimum eyesight standards
not be a current or previous member of a proscribed terrorist organisation or group
have a minimum of 2 A Levels (or equivalent 64 UCAS points), Level 2 (GCSE or equivalent) Maths and English*
To be considered for entry to the Degree Holder Entry Programme, applicants must provide certificates and transcripts of the following qualifications:
UK undergraduate degree (360 credits) in any subject (other than Professional Policing)
*Applicants without the minimum qualifications may still be able to apply. Individuals with relevant work experience and some academic qualifications can apply to have their skills and experience assessed by our skills panel.
Skills panel comprises representatives from our Learning & Development team and our university partner, Anglian Ruskin University. You will be invited to discuss your skills, experience and qualifications with the panel, who will decide on your capability to complete the required training to become a police officer. Please note, this panel does not replace the job interview later in the recruitment process.
If you think you are a suitable candidate for skills panel assessment, please contact a member of the recruitment team by email [email protected]
If you have contacted us about a skills panel assessment, do not apply via our online application form until you have spoken to a member of the team.
We are committed to providing reasonable workplace adjustments to all individuals throughout the recruitment process, and during their time with the Constabulary. It is our aim to support individuals to get into policing and to support them once they are part of our team. The below contains some information around what the Constabulary will need in order to support colleagues with any long term health conditions.
We are proud to be accredited as a disability confident leader, and offer extra support and guidance to our people and to candidates applying for roles within the Constabulary. If you would like to find out more about what this means, or how we could support you as a candidate during the recruitment process, please contact a member of the recruitment team.
The Constabulary is also pleased to be partnered with the Business Disability Forum (BDF). BDF are the leading business membership organisation in disability inclusion. They work in partnership with business, Government, and disabled people to remove barriers to inclusion. The forum's 500+ members employ more than 20 per cent of the UK workforce and an estimated 8 million people worldwide.
The relationship between BDF and the Constabulary is one that provides professional support and best practise, ensuring that we are able to best support our people throughout their employment. For more information on BDF, visit the Business Disability Forum website.
So you want to join us as a police officer.
This application process consists of several stages and it’s important to note that because of this, the average time from application to appointment is six months. We have this process to make sure we recruit the very best people with integrity and high ethical and professional standards.
Stage 1: Complete the application form - please be aware this will take you to our recruitment portal, which may look different to our main website
The College of Policing outline that positive action is not about giving some people more favourable treatment, it is about levelling the playing field to enable individuals to compete on equal terms. At Suffolk Constabulary we are looking for a talented workforce who can best serve the community it represents. In other words, we are looking for talented people from a diverse range of backgrounds.
Positive action is a range of measures and initiatives that aim to eliminate unlawful discrimination and promote equality of opportunity and that we treat all applications fairly and in accordance with current legislation. It is lawful action to encourage those from under-represented groups to bring their expertise, experience and talent to our organisation. When applying to join Suffolk Constabulary, our selection processes are no different.
Through the use of positive action, we do not seek to remove competition, rather allow everyone the same level of opportunity, with the final selection always made on the merit of the applicant.
Having a positive action programme will have an impact on the public through improving organisational, team and personal performance.
In particular it will contribute to:
building better relationships with communities, resulting in a more effective service
delivering on the priorities established for the police service such as reducing crime and reducing bureaucracy
creating a fair and equitable career pathway for members of under-represented groups
supporting career progression of those who demonstrate the talent to reach the next step
The Equality’s Act protects people from being treated less favourably because they have a protected characteristic. Sections 158 and 159 set out the provisions under the act for use of positive action.
Positive action applies to all protected characteristics in employment and these are:
marriage and civil partnership
religion and belief
pregnancy and maternity
Suffolk Police use positive action to support individuals and/or groups who as a result of their protected characteristic/s suffer a disadvantage or have a need that through support can be reduced or overcome.
Positive action is entirely voluntary. There is no requirement for an employer to use either the general provisions or those relating to recruitment and promotion.
The force is keen to recruit people with a wide range of skills and experiences and an understanding of cultural issues. We have a number of support networks that are available to all officers, staff and volunteers, including:
Suffolk Ethnic Police Association (SEPA)
Suffolk Association of Women in Policing (SWAP)
Disability and Carers Network – DCN
The Suffolk LGBT+ Police Network
Suffolk Police are focused on attracting, recruiting and retaining talented people. We value equality, diversity and inclusivity and welcome applications from across our communities.
For further information or advice relating to positive action visit our positive action pages, or email Daniella Lord, our positive action recruitment advisor.