Response officer

Every police recruit has to complete a 2 year probationary period on the front line. But after your probation, there’s a huge range of different positions you could progress to, including the role of a response officer.

Role purpose

As a response officer, you provide frontline response to a wide range of incidents, including complex and sometimes confrontational situations. Here’s a bit more about what being a response officer involves.

  • You’ll be the first to respond to incidents in an appropriate, professional and timely manner. Your training will likely involve developing advanced driving skills so you can get to incidents quickly.
  • You’ll quickly need to take initial control (and in some cases, potentially apply first aid), and then update and liaise with senior colleagues and other agencies such as the fire and ambulance service.
  • You’ll need to assess any immediate threats or risk of harm and quickly decide the best response that will keep you, other people and property safe, preserve order, prevent offences being committed and bring offenders to justice.
  • You’ll need to conduct effective investigations, which involves determining how significant information and evidence is to an enquiry.
  • You’ll collate and record information, intelligence and evidence gathered, recording crimes and incidents in accordance with national standards, to ensure investigations cans proceed promptly and effectively.

A key part of the job will be dealing with victims, witnesses and suspects – they can be vulnerable, volatile or both. So great communication skills and the ability to read people and adapt your communication style so they’ll engage with you is really important. But don't worry, you'll receive all the training and support you need to help you in your role.

And because you’re working on the front line, you’re instrumental in growing and maintaining positive perceptions of the police service.

Response policing is just one way your police career could take you after successfully completing your probation. Find out more about career progression.

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