Important things you need to know about police recruitment in the UK

Getting into the police can be a smashing way to have a stable career and one that pays well. Police recruitment can be strict and difficult though, and with a lot of choices, so you need to know what you're letting yourself in for before you apply.

What Type of Police Role Would You Like? - There are a number of things you can do in the UK police force. You should know the role you want to be considered for before you go through police recruitment. For example:

If you want to be on the frontline of police work, then apply to be a police officer. It requires a two-year probationary period and you can choose a speciality field. Police community support officers work to support members of the community but don't always have full police powers. Special constables are unpaid volunteers that work at least four hours a week to help their community.

Eligibility - The eligibility requirements for the police force depend on the type of police role you're applying for and the specific police force you apply to. But, basic requirements include a minimum age of 18, good health, and an ability to pass written tests.

There is no minimum height requirement, you can't have been convicted of a major crime (or some minor ones), and you must be legally able to work in the UK.

Pay and Benefits - Being a member of the UK police force has lots of benefits, including an excellent salary, a pay rise each year, paid sick leave, a high number of annual holidays, and paid overtime. You'll also get opportunities to participate in force-paid trainings that will benefit you and your chances of career advancement.

Application Procedures - Each police force throughout the UK processes their own applications, so you need to start by contacting your local police force and asking them about their particular application procedures.

If you want more information about working for the police in the UK and current police recruitment procedures, the Home Office has an excellent website that can help. Check it out at http://policerecruitment.homeoffice.gov.uk

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