Police officer application guidance
Please observe the following advice carefully to help with your online application form; failure to do so may result in your application being withdrawn.
For Police officer applications submitted to South Wales Police, make sure you:
- Read the Police Officer eligibility criteria to ensure you can fulfil all essential requirements for the role, for example;
- It is important that you are able to meet, or are working to achieve, a standard of fitness before you consider applying for this role. If you are successful at the assessment centre, you will be invited to attend a fitness test: you will need to achieve the set level of fitness to proceed in the application process. Immediately prior to appointment you will be asked to attend a pre-appointment fitness test. If you fail this test – irrespective of the results of your previous fitness tests – you will be not be eligible for the role of Police Officer and your application will be withdrawn.
- It is important that you consider your body mass index (BMI) – you will be asked to disclose this if you are successful at assessment centre. We will send you a medical form for completion which includes this disclosure information. It is important to maintain a healthy weight to be considered for the role. Police Officer applicants with a BMI over 32 will not be considered fit unless their body fat percentage is less than 30% for men or 36% for women. You can check your BMI on the NHS website.
- It is important that you are able to meet the vetting standards required to the role, please refer to the Home Office Guidance if you require further information in relation to this. Alternatively, contact the Recruitment Team who will be happy to help with any queries.
- Read the questions carefully before you submit them; read your application to check for spelling, grammar and formatting and also review your answers before submitting. If you submit an error, contact the recruitment team to make the amendment, do not create an additional application as the system will identify it as a duplicate submission.
- Review the different entry routes and their qualification requirements and ensure the entry route open is one that you are eligible for.
- Ensure that you provide all relevant information and that what you submit is true.
- We have the right to close our Police officer campaigns when we have reached the desired application number. It is therefore essential that you complete your application as soon as possible once the vacancy has gone live. Once a vacancy is closed only complete applications will be processed so it is important you have all your information ready to submit. Required documents are listed below;
You will be asked to provide the following as part of your Police officer application. It is therefore important you have ready:
- An electronic copy of your highest formal qualification. You will be required to provide an electronic copy of proof of qualification at the point of application. It can take some time receiving these from your education provider so we recommended requesting them as soon as possible. Where a role states a set level as a requirement – for example Level 3 – you may also be required to submit this as part of your application.
- Where required, an electronic copy of proof for the right to remain in the United Kingdom.
- Where required, an electronic copy of your driver’s licence, front and back.
- Where required, a full adult diagnostic report (over the age of 16) if you are an applicant requesting reasonable adjustments. More information on reasonable adjustments can be found here.
- Where required, clear photographs of all visible tattoos – a close up of the detail and a photo demonstrating its location on the body. Tattoos located on the face, neck, hands do not comply with Home Office Guidance or South Wales Police Public Presentation Policy. We will consider each tattoo individually, this includes tattoos that are considered garish or offensive
Please be aware, once you have submitted your application if any issues are found with the above documents our Recruitment team will make contact to clarify information or request updated documents. This will cause a delay to the processing of your application.
Application guidance FAQs
While you are able to submit simultaneous applications to other forces for the role of Police Officer and other policing roles, it is South Wales Police policy to ask you to make a decision as to which force you wish to proceed with if you are successful at the national assessment centre, we appreciate your co-operation with this.
If you have a Police Officer application in with another Force you must declare this when submitting an application to South Wales Police, regardless of what stage of the recruitment process you are at with that application.
If you make a new Police Officer application to another Force, or are invited to an assessment centre, whilst your application to South Wales Police is still being processed you must inform our Recruitment team.
If you have attended a national assessment centre within the 24month months prior to submitting your application, and have achieved a pass across all competencies, you can request to transfer this score to a South Wales Police recruitment campaign. We will need an electronic copy of your feedback report from the College of Policing in order to evidence this request. Please note that we are only able to consider requests to transfer a score during a live recruitment campaign, transfer requests will not be accepted outside of this window of opportunity.
If you require any information on transferring scores, or if you have sat an assessment centre but are not in possession of the proof of pass, please contact us for further advice in advance of your application.
You will only be able to sit a maximum of two national Police Officer assessment centres within a 12 month period, for unsuccessful candidates there is a mandatory three month period before you can re-sit the online assessment centre. The online assessment centre is currently hosted externally by the College of Policing as a virtual assessment centre. Any issues encountered during the assessment process should be directed to them as we do not have access to this platform.
If successful in your application to South Wales Police, applicants should be aware that they may be posted to any Local Policing unit across the South Wales force area.
Our Establishment team will consider a range of information when deciding on your posting, but the principle determining factor will be organisational requirement.
Applicants will be given at least four weeks’ notice of their appointment date and should be prepared to give their current employer the same. If you are required to give an extended period of notice, you should inform the recruitment team as soon as you have successfully completed your assessment centre.
To support your application you will need to provide a minimum of two references covering a three year period at the point of submission. These should include your most recent employer and any previous employers. In the case you have not had any previous employment you can use an academic reference or a character reference – though a character reference should not be a family member or a serving Police Officer.
As an organisation we actively encourage the use of Welsh internally, to increase opportunities to see, hear and use the language when conducting our business. While you can apply to join the force with no Welsh ability, it is expected that all Police Officer recruits will achieve level 2 Welsh by the end of their probation. Support will be provided for applicants to achieve this once in post, but applicants are welcome to begin learning Welsh before applying.
The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011 replaced the Welsh Language Act 1993 and as part of the new legislation, in Wales the Welsh language has equal legal status with English and must not be treated less favourably. Public bodies no longer need to develop and implement Welsh language schemes but instead now must comply with a set of national Welsh language standards.
Before applying for any role we advise:
- Researching South Wales Police. We are looking for candidates that have an awareness of the work we do and can demonstrate knowledge of our vision, values and ethics.
- Researching South Wales. It is important that you not only have an understanding of the work we do, but also the communities we serve.
- Understanding the role that you are applying for. We provide general information on our website, but a full role profile is also supplied in support of every role we advertise. You should read this thoroughly and consider if this is a role suitable for your talents, interests and abilities. The information contained in this document contains core competencies relevant to the role which will be tested through the application, interview and assessment process.