Become A Police Detective: Police Detective Jobs
Do you notice? Are you a problem solver? Someone who can communicate with anyone? Can you gain the trust of those around you?
Do you have the resilience to see your problem solving through to conclusion in the face of serious and complex crimes?
Choosing to be a detective is a serious career choice. Detectives are focused, work well under pressure and respond quickly to new information with a determined, positive attitude.
A career as a detective offers a competitive starting salary and benefits package compared to other graduate career choices, alongside long-term career development.
You also get a unique chance to have an immediate and positive impact on the most vulnerable people in society.
Join one of our partner police forces as a trainee detective through Police Nows National Detective Programme.
How Do You Become A Detective
A detective needs to study to become a police officer and work general duties for several years before specialising. Use the following steps as a guideline to become a detective:
Fulfil educational requirements to enter the police force
Gain work experience as a police officer
Participate in additional study and pass examination
Apply for advancements and open positions
How To Become A Police Officer In Canada & Disqualifiers To Avoid
Choosing a new career , can be an overwhelming process. Opportunities are endless in a country like Canada. Its not easy figuring out which direction to take in the first place.
Canadian Business helps you narrow down your options with a list of The Top 25 Jobs in Canada. And were here to help you break down #14 on that list: police officer.
Being a police officer comes with great responsibility, authority, and trust. Therefore strict standards are upheld in the selection process to ensure only the right candidates are hired. This process typically includes:
- A written exam
- Have no criminal convictions and no criminal charges pending
In addition to the above list, each police force adds its own list of requirements.
Those applying for the RCMP need to meet the following additional requirements:
- Permanent resident applicants need to have resided in Canada for the last 10 years.
- Be at least 19 years old
- Possess a valid, unrestricted driver’s licence
- Be able to spend 26 weeks at the RCMP Academy in Regina, Saskatchewan
- Be willing to relocate anywhere within Canada
- Not have any tattoos that depict or incite hate, harassment, or discrimination against individuals on the basis of the grounds listed in Canadian Human Rights Act, section 3.
- Not wear any personal effects on the body that may interfere with the personal protective equipment.
The Vancouver Police Department asks that their applicants meet the following additional requirements:
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Education For Police And Detectives
Police and detective applicants must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent, although many federal agencies and some police departments require some college coursework or a college degree. Many community colleges, 4-year colleges, and universities offer programs in law enforcement and criminal justice. Knowledge of a foreign language is an asset in many federal agencies and geographical regions.
Fish and game wardens typically need a bachelor’s degree desirable fields of study include wildlife science, biology, or natural resources management.
Federal agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation also typically require prospective detectives and investigators to have a bachelor’s degree.
Many applicants for entry-level police jobs have taken some college classes, and a significant number are college graduates.
List Of Police Services Websites
Thank you for your interest in our local police services. Below is a comprehensive list of of the Police Services in Ontario. Once you click the link, you will be directed to the Police website.
Those interested in federal-wide policing can contact the RCMP for job opportunities. Please note that the RCMP does have a different Constable Selection Process and does not require the OACP Certificate in order to apply.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Section 83 of the Comprehensive Ontario Police Services Act, 2019, stipulates a person appointed as a police officer must:
is a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada
is at least 18 years of age
is physically and mentally able to perform the duties of the position, having regard to his or her own safety and the safety of members of the public
is of good character
has successfully completed, prescribed training by the Minister
In addition, you must
obtained a University Degree or a diploma from a college of applied arts and technology,
possess a valid driver’s licence with no more than six accumulated demerit-points, permitting you to drive an automobile in Ontario with full driving privileges
have current certification in Standard First Aid Level C CPR by the time the offer of employment is given
be able to pass a security clearance as well as background investigation, credit and reference checks.
This certificate is valid for 2 years. That includes all documents in Part A and the Part B, Part C testing.
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The Application Process For Police Officer Candidates
It isnt easy becoming a police officer. Potential candidates need to go through a stringent application process designed to weed out those who dont have what it takes to become outstanding police officers.
Police officers help maintain peace and order and ensure that members of the community stay safe. This job comes with immense responsibility. The application process itself is not for everyone.
Canadian police agencies generally follow the same process which involves a series of tests, checks and interviews, including:
- A written exam
- A polygraph exam
- A background investigation
Some of these tests require detailed paperwork but minimal preparation. For some tests, like the physical tests, you would be best prepared if you did a fitness training program, prior to, depending on your fitness level. Other tests, like the polygraph exam, require no preparation at all.
Applicants can be declined at any point in the stages listed above and even if a candidate passes every stage, an offer of employment is not guaranteed.
Once you have completed all assessments, your entire application package is reviewed and measured against other applicants to determine the most suitable candidates for the role as a police officer.
If you are recruited, you can expect a conditional offer of employment that allows you to advance to the final step before you become a police officer: cadet training.
What Is The Average Salary Of A Detective
The national average salary for a detective is $111,802 per year, according to Indeed’s salary guide. Yearly income can vary depending on a detective’s location and experience. Detectives working with a State or Territory Crime Command or the Australian Federal Police also typically command higher salaries than those working for a Local Area Command.
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What Are The Minimum Requirements For Ontario Police Officer Applicants In Ontario
Before applying, ensure that you meet the minimum requirements. The following list of application requirements applies to most police agencies in Ontario:
- Minimum 18 years of age
- Fluency in English
- Canadian high school diploma or equivalent
- Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident
- Valid current standard first aid / CPR C certification
- Class ‘G’ driver’s license, full driving privileges, and a maximum of 6 demerit points
- No criminal convictions which have not been pardoned and no criminal charges pending
In addition to the above, the Toronto Police Service requires candidates to meet the following requirements:
- Possess a valid O.A.C.P. certificate,
- Be able to pass a security clearance as well as a background investigation, credit check, and reference check.
Willingness to serve anywhere in the province is an additional requirement for those applying to the Ontario Provincial Police.
Become A Licensed Private Detective
A third way to become a Detective in the UK is to become a Private Detective. The Security Industry Authority issues licensing under the Home Office’s direction. Requirements include:
18-years of age
having the right to work in the UK
paying a licensing fee
passing the Fit and Proper Person tests
achieving government qualification
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Toronto Police Officer Application Process
The process outlined below belongs to the Toronto Police Service. Most police agencies in Ontario follow a similar process.
Applicants can be declined at any stage in the application process. The most suitable candidates in the application pool are selected amongst those who pass every stage.
Once you have been selected, you advance to recruit training. In the Toronto Police Service application process, you are sent to the Ontario Police College for recruit training. Recruits need to pass this program in order to become a police officer.
Graduate Police Academy Training
After high school, the next step for many candidates is enrolling into a police academy. This process often includes multiple interviews as well as tests both physical and written. Individual departments and government agencies offer these programs as part of their hiring process. Additionally, the curriculum includes training in firearms, self-defense, traffic control and first aid. Programs usually last around six months.
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Fulfil Educational Requirements To Enter The Police Force
All detectives are experienced police officers. To become a detective, you must first fulfil the educational requirements to join the police force. Study a course recognised by your state or territory’s police force.
An associate degree in police practice is one of the most common courses completed by aspiring detectives. This course runs for five trimesters. The first two trimesters involve classroom instruction at a police training college. The final three trimesters provide on-the-job training.
Certification requirements vary between the federal level, states and territories. Common requirements include certificates for water safety and rescue, keyboard skills and first aid. After completing all necessary courses, you can find work as a probationary constable.
Responsibilities Of A Detective
Part of the detectives job involves crime prevention. For example, a detective might gather intelligence that points to an organized crime ring or a drug-trafficking infrastructure in their jurisdiction. By gathering evidence of intended criminal activity, detectives may gain the legal standing to break up these organizations and arrest their central figures before a crime is actually committed.
Often, detectives use informants to gather information and evidence of criminal activity. It is the responsibility of a detective to manage the operations of all informants. Any suspect or offender information is provided to patrol officers.
Additionally, detectives work with prosecutors to ensure there is ample evidence to support any arrests that are made. This evidence is used in the courtroom to lead to convictions, ensuring that those who have committed criminal acts are appropriately penalized .
Finally, detectives may resolve issues on behalf of civilians, such as helping families find missing persons. They also maintain communication with crime victims regarding arrests and required court-hearing information.
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Icipate In Additional Study And Pass Examination
Working as a detective requires gaining an Advanced Diploma of Police Investigations or similar. This involves a year of specialised on-the-job training. Earning a Bachelor of Policing is another option. This three-year full-time degree helps practicing police officers develop their investigative skills.
In some states and territories, aspiring detectives must also pass a test, such as Victoria’s Investigator Suitability Assessment, before applying for detective roles. Some people may work as a trainee detective while studying. After graduating, they can then become a designated detective.
Who Would Make A Good Homicide Detective
Homicide detectives have many stories to tell, but their stories dont always portray the actual work they do to solve the ultimate puzzle. Its only with the proper training, years of experience, and the humility and wisdom to learn from your mistakes that youll develop a system and intuition that work for you.
Although not all homicide detectives are the same, they do share some of the same personality traits. So, what makes a good homicide detective?
- Curious, because you really DO want to get to the bottom of things
- High ethical standards, because theres no place for corruption on the police force
- Insightful, so you can draw conclusions that others dont
- Like having a variety of tasks to perform no two days are the same
- Logical and systematic, with strong reasoning skills
- Observant, as youll pay attention to small details, and scrutinize information provided by your sources to determine whether its credible or not
- Organized, so you can be efficient and get your work done while not letting anything fall through the cracks
- Practical and realistic, but results-oriented to get the job done
- Strong personality shrinking violets need not apply
Do any of these character traits describe you? If so, you may be like many other homicide detectives who, as demanding as the job may be, couldnt imagine doing anything else.
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Complete The Detective Degree Holder Entry Programme
Citizens who are not police officers can obtain Detective status by completing the two-year DHEP programme, which includes a vocational course and concludes with a graduate diploma in Professional Policing Practice.
The DHEP scheme is in place because of a severe shortage of police investigators in the UK. The deficit is due to several factors, for instance, demand for specialists such as counter-terrorism detectives and an increased need for detective skills in the commercial sector. This shortage has resulted in huge workloads and increased pressure on existing detectives.
Recruitment requirements for the DHEP scheme include:
Once the recruitment process is complete, DHEP training continues as follows:
The first week includes a three-day induction plus two-days in the classroom.
This is followed by 16-weeks of classroom foundation learning, 8-weeks of Street Duty training resulting in obtaining Independent Patrol status .
The remainder of the program is spent on the front line, starting with the investigations team whilst continuing work towards the Professionalising Investigation Programme level 1 and passing the National Investigations Exam .
The trainee investigators spend the second year working in both local investigations and a safeguarding role to develop the skills required to achieve PIP level 2 and Full Operational Competence by the end of the programme.
Strategic management and leadership of major investigations is the final level, PIP 4.
Competencies Of A Police Officer
The role of police constables has shifted from traditional enforcement and authority to community policing and service. In addition to the minimum requirements, candidates must possess certain essential and local skills, knowledge, abilities, motives, behaviours, or attitudes for successful performance on the job.
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What Does A Police Detective Do
A police detective investigates all kinds of crime. In modern fiction, you usually see detectives working homicide cases. However, detectives work in all kinds of cases. Detectives gather evidence to try and build a case. Once a case has been established evidence is turned over from the detective’s office to the office of the prosecutor where the case is presented in court against a defendant.
Because of this, detectives play an essential role in the criminal justice process, working cases until they are eventually dropped or solved. Detectives must be careful administrative professionals who take thorough notes, understanding that anything they say or do could be presented in court as part of a case.
Before becoming full-fledged detectives, they must work their way through the police force, starting with patrols, and eventually working their way into a detective.
Important Qualities For Police And Detectives
Communication skills. Police and detectives must be able to speak with people when gathering facts about a crime and to express details about a given incident in writing.
Empathy. Police officers need to understand the perspectives of a wide variety of people in their jurisdiction and have a willingness to help the public.
Good judgment. Police and detectives must be able to determine the best way to solve a wide array of problems quickly.
Leadership skills. Police officers must be comfortable with being a highly visible member of their community, as the public looks to them for assistance in emergency situations.
Perceptiveness. Officers, detectives, and fish and game wardens must be able to anticipate a person’s reactions and understand why people act a certain way.
Physical stamina. Officers and detectives must be in good physical shape, both to pass required tests for entry into the field, and to keep up with the daily rigors of the job.
Physical strength. Police officers must be strong enough to physically apprehend offenders.
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Job Outlook For Police And Detectives
Employment of police and detectives is projected to grow 5 percent over the next ten years, faster than the average for all occupations.
While a continued desire for public safety is expected to result in a need for more officers, demand for employment is expected to vary depending on location, driven largely by local and state budgets. Even with crime rates falling in recent years, demand for police services to maintain and improve public safety is expected to continue.
Potential Disqualifiers For A Policing Career In Canada
When preparing yourself for a policing career, you need to be aware of what will disqualify you from the police application process. As far as the written, physical, and medical exams, the requirements are fairly consistent across all agencies.
Language Disqualifier: You need to be fluent in either English or French including being able to speak, read, and understand one of these languages.
Physical Disqualifier: You cannot be in poor physical condition. Failure to successfully complete the physical examination in the minimum time frame is an automatic disqualification.
Test particulars can vary from one police agency to the next. However, all tests simulate critical incidents that police officers are exposed to. For example. the Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation , used by the RCMP, consists of three sections:
Psychological Disqualifiers: A candidate can be disqualified if they do not meet the minimum psychological examination requirements.
Work Environment Disqualifiers: Police departments require you to work shift work which includes nights, evenings, weekends, and holidays as policing takes place 24 hours per day. If you are unwilling to accommodate this type of work schedule, you will be disqualified from the process.
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