Apply for police officer roles with Police Now

We know some graduate recruitment processes can seem daunting at the start, but we’ve worked hard to streamline our process as much as possible while still keeping the standards you would expect for roles in policing.


It has been specifically designed to get the best from all applicants so be yourself and enjoy getting even more insight into the role you are interested in.

Places on our national graduate programmes are filled on a first come first serve basis so make sure you submit your application as soon as possible. In the past, applications have closed early due to high volumes of graduates applying.

National Graduate Leadership Programme

Applications now open

Police Now’s eligibility criteria


To apply for Police Now’s National Graduate Leadership Programme, you must meet our eligibility criteria.


You don’t need any previous policing knowledge or experience, and it doesn’t matter if you’ve never previously considered a career in policing. We’re looking for people with the potential to become the next generation of police officers, representing the diversity of the communities you serve.

Eligibility criteria for Police Now’s National Detective Programme will be reviewed on completion of the pilot currently being run.

Age:  you must be over 18 on programme start date

Academic:  you must have achieved any Level 3 qualification

Degree:  you must have already achieved or be working towards a 2.2. or above or non-UK equivalent by the programme start date

Right to work:  you must have indefinite leave to remain and work in the UK without restriction

Residency:  you must have lived in the UK for the last 3 years with no more than 9 months abroad cumulatively within that time

Politics:  you cannot be a member of an organisation whose aims, and objectives, may contradict the duty to promote race equality; and cannot plan to continue to take an active role in politics

Finance:  you cannot currently be in arrears, bankrupt, have a County Court Judgement (CCJ) or Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA)

Force specific eligibility criteria:  you may find that your force has some additional specific eligibility criteria. For more details on this check out our force hub.

Our competencies

We are emotionally aware

We make the effort to understand ourselves, our colleagues and all those we serve.
We genuinely engage with and listen to others, making efforts to understand needs, perspectives and concerns.


We take ownership

We make decisions at appropriate levels and in appropriate areas, having a clear rationale and accepting responsibility for our decisions.

We seek feedback, learn from our mistakes and reflect to improve and amend our future practices.


We are collaborative

We build genuine and long-lasting partnerships that focus on collective aims and not just on our own organisation. This goes beyond just working in teams and with colleagues we see daily.

We deliver, support and inspire

We understand the vision for the organisation. We use our organisation’s values in our day-to-day activities as a role model to provide inspiration and clarity to our colleagues and stakeholders.


We analyse critically

We analyse information, data, viewpoints and combine the best available evidence to understand the root causes of issues that arise in complex situations.


We are innovative and

We have an inquisitive and outward-looking nature, searching for new information to understand alternative sources of good practice and implement creative working methods.

Our values


We are transparent in our actions, decisions and communications with both the people we work with and those we serve.



We must show impartiality throughout all our dealings with colleagues, partners and members of the public.


We understand and reinforce expectations of professional behaviour and openly recognise good and bad performance.


Public Service

We have a responsibility to ensure that we act in the best interests of society as a whole.

Application process


The Police Now National Graduate Leadership Programme, which is open for applications, has a four step recruitment process.

1. Application

In the application form, you’ll be asked for details allowing us to check your eligibility. This will include: personal information (name/DOB/address), education history, employment history, tattoos, convictions, business interests, financial position, diversity & monitoring and data protection. We don’t ask about your motivation to join Police Now at this stage.

We expect the application form to take no longer than 30 minutes to complete on average. Following a successful screening review, you’ll be invited to complete an online assessment within five days after your application form submission.


2. Online Assessment

First, you’ll complete a personality questionnaire. This is designed to gain an understanding of your behavioural preferences, how you approach tasks and interact with others. The second part is a week-in-the-life immersive assessment, where you’ll experience a number of realistic scenarios you would encounter in the day to day job as a neighbourhood police officer.

We will look to see how you react in different situations, how you reflect on how you dealt with them and how you articulate yourself in written format.

Read our hints and tips for completing the online assessment


3. Assessment Centre

If successful at stage two you’ll be invited to book a slot at one of our assessment centre dates in central London, which will all be done online. Travel expenses are reimbursed and light refreshments are available during your time with us. This stage is an opportunity for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the programme you have applied for. So it’s important that you understand why you applied for a place on the programme and that you are yourself throughout the exercises.

You will go through three exercises: a strengths-based interview, a role play and self-reflection, and two virtual reality environments. You will also be offered preparation support ahead of the assessment centre, which you will be sent details on when you progress through to this stage. The dress code is smart.

Read our hints and tips for the Assessment Centre

4. Onboarding

Following a successful assessment centre you will be offered a position with your chosen force by your Graduate Recruitment Officer, who you’ll have been working with throughout. They will support you through your pre-employment checks, which vary force-by-force.

You will be given a login to your onboarding website so you can access useful information you’ll need before joining as well as giving you the chance to chat to others joining your force. During this time we’ll also support you while you complete online vetting, biometric and fitness tests, a medical and we will review your previous employment references.

Finally, you’ll attend both force and Police Now induction events which provide a great opportunity to build your network with your fellow future team mate.


How you can join a Police Now programme


National Graduate
Leadership Programme


Do you want to make a difference? Become a neighbourhood police officer and work to transform communities, protect the vulnerable, and increase the public’s confidence in policing.


More about this programme

National Detective


Do you notice? Are you inquisitive? A problem solver? Becoming a detective offers a unique chance to have an immediate and positive impact on the most vulnerable people in society.


More about this programme

Our national graduate programmes


Applications are now open for our 2020 National Graduate Leadership Programme with the following forces:

•  Avon and Somerset Constabulary
•  Bedfordshire Police
•  Cambridgeshire Constabulary
•  Essex Police
•  Hertfordshire Constabulary
•  Humberside Police

•  Greater Manchester Police
•  Lancashire Constabulary
•  Metropolitan Police Service
•  North Yorkshire Police
•  Northumbria Police
•  South Yorkshire Police

•  Staffordshire Police
•  Surrey Police
•  Sussex Police
•  West Mercia Police
•  West Midlands Police

Join our national graduate programmes



Over five years we’ve partnered with 30 police forces across England and Wales to provide career opportunities nationwide.

Applications are now open for our 2020 National Graduate Leadership Programme.



Where we’re recruiting

Why our participants joined the police


Participants on the Police Now national graduate programmes come from diverse backgrounds with various degree qualifications and work experience. We’re proud that 80% of these participants remain in policing after they complete their two-year programme, with many pursuing promotion opportunities or roles with specialist units.

Read about their journeys and the impact they’ve made since becoming qualified police officers in the community.



You’ll be there.

Visible, reliable, proud


Apply for our National Graduate Leadership Programme today.


Join us

Information centres

Have you got any questions? Find the answers here.




For more information about Police Now, our national graduate programmes or the application process, read our FAQs.




For any press enquiries or questions about Police Now or our national graduate programmes, contact our general enquiries team.




If you’re looking to apply or have already applied and have any queries, please get in touch with our recruitment team.


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