Frequently Asked Questions

Where are CNC vacancies based?

We try where possible to state the location of Police Officer vacancies, however, due to operational requirements this is not always possible, we look at the vacancies close to the time of the training course. On your initial application form we will ask for your site preference – we then use this as a guide when deciding on offers of employment. We try to ensure applicants are offered their choice.

Police Staff vacancies are advertised as and when a position arises. The vacancies are normally in a set location and are advertised on our career’s website and other appropriate media including online and occasionally in publications.

Police Officer Applications

Can you fast-track career progression within the CNC?

No, currently we do not offer any high potential development schemes.

What opportunities are there to specialise?

Because of the nature of our work, all CNC Police Officers are required to be trained Armed Response Officers which is normally a specialty area within Home Office Forces. We also have several other specialty areas:

  • Dog Handlers
  • Communications
  • Firearms Instructors
  • Intelligence/Special Branch
  • Road and Marine Escort Officers
  • Training Officers

Can I do work experience at the CNC?

Everyone who works for the CNC needs security clearance. As the security clearance process can take a long time, this means we are unable to offer work experience to potential candidates.

Application and Assessment Process

What are the details of the application process?

The first stage is to fill in the online application form. You'll need to complete and submit your form within the specified timescales. When completing the application please take care to read all instructions carefully.

We will confirm that we have received your application form and assess it alongside local and national criteria. If you pass this stage, you will be invited to the next stage of the relevant recruitment process.

How long does the full recruitment process take?

Our recruitment process is rigorous and in-depth, involving several security checks ensuring we obtain the most able recruits for the CNC. For Police Officers it is not unusual for the recruitment process to take up to 12 months from application to job offer, however we do our best to make it as quick as possible. Successful candidates can help speed up the recruitment process by providing requested information in a timely manner.

If unsuccessful can I re-apply to join the CNC or another Constabulary?

Yes, although you can only apply to join one force at a time. If your application to join the CNC is unsuccessful, you will need to wait at least six months before re-applying to join either the CNC or another Constabulary. Please be advised that being unsuccessful due to a vetting issue may mean that you cannot reapply.

What happens in an Assessment Centre?

During the Police Officer Assessment Centre, you will take part in several exercises:

  • a competency-based structured interview;
  • group assessments;
  • a firearms assessment;
  • an observational written exercise;

You will also have an opportunity to meet current serving Police Officers and ask any questions you may have about the role or the CNC.

What fitness tests do I need to take?

If successful in your application to be one of our police officers, you will need a high level of fitness to carry out your full duties. We will assess your fitness to ensure that you achieve the minimum standard. The fitness test is an Endurance test and you'll need to pass this to progress your application.

You will be asked to run along a 15m track in time with a series of bleeps. This type of fitness test is also known as the ‘Bleep Test’. The current pass rate is 7.6 which is in line with national standards.

Do I need to be a UK citizen to apply?

To apply to join the CNC, you must be a British, EEA or Commonwealth citizen or foreign national with no restrictions on your stay in the United Kingdom. Foreign nationals and UK citizens who have lived abroad may have to wait some time for security and vetting clearance. All applicants must be vetted to the same standard before appointment.

Is there an age standard?

To apply to become an officer you need to be at least 18 and must be at least 18 and a half on appointment. There is no upper age limit, but you need to bear in mind that normal pensionable age for Police Officers is currently 60.

Will you let me know the result of my application, whether I am successful or not?

Yes, we will contact you by email, letter or phone at each stage of the recruitment process to inform you whether you have been successful or unsuccessful. However, if you are unsuccessful due to a vetting issue the reasons for refusal may not be shared.

Security Checks

What security checks are carried out?

Everyone working for the CNC is required to have security clearance. All Staff and Officers have to successfully complete Recruitment Vetting (RV) and Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS). Also, depending on the location from which you work a Police Officer will either receive Security Check (SC) or Developed Vetting (DV) standards and Police Staff may depending on role.

Can I still apply if I have had a previous conviction?

You may be eligible to apply to join CNC if you have had minor convictions or penalties. There are certain convictions that will make you ineligible to apply. In your application form please be honest. You will need to let us know all convictions, formal police cautions and any bind-overs imposed by any court. This should include traffic offences such as speeding, drink-driving and fixed penalties for motoring or disorder offences. It also includes spent convictions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (by virtue of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exemptions) Order 1975).

You should also let us know if you have been involved with civil, military or transport police, and any court martial appearances. Be advised that in the application and vetting forms it asks you to state any interaction you have had with Police, even as a witness or even that you were spoken to in the street. Please do not hesitate to contact The Police Officer Recruitment Team should you wish to discuss this further.

What financial checks do you carry out?

As Police Officers have access to privileged information we will need to check your financial status to assess whether it gives us cause to view that your financial status may make you vulnerable to corruption.

If you have outstanding County Court judgements and have been registered bankrupt with outstanding debts, your application will be rejected. If you have discharged bankruptcy debts, then you will need to provide a Certificate of Satisfaction with your application.

Medical Standards

What are the medical and eyesight standards?

Details of the CNC’s medical standards are available here.

What happens if I do not meet the medical standards?

Each individual case is considered by a Risk Assessment Panel chaired by a Senior Officer. The panel decides whether the individual meets the medical standards for the CNC based on the information provided by the Occupational Health Physician in line with the Equality Act 2010 and Constabulary Policy.

Police Staff

Types of roles available

We employ Police Staff in a variety of roles both at our headquarters in Culham, Oxfordshire, and at other locations around the UK. Types of roles available include:

  • Corporate Development
  • Human Resources and Organisational Development
  • Finance
  • IT and Communications
  • Firearms Instructors
  • Administrative Support
  • Control Room Operators
  • Duty Planners

Salary and Benefits

What is the starting salary?

The starting salary for new recruit Police Officers is currently £22,000 per year. This will increase after successful completion of the probationary period to £24,171.

Police Staff salaries are determined by salary bands, depending on the level of the role.

What benefits are offered?

Police Officers:

  • 22 days annual leave rising to 30 days after 20 years’ service
  • Final contribution salary pension scheme
  • South-east allowance, for officers based at specific locations
  • Paid overtime
  • Annual incremental pay rise, following satisfactory completion of a two year probation

Police Staff:

  • 27.5 days annual leave per year rising to 32.5 days after 20 years’ service
  • Flexi-time
  • Flexible working scheme
  • Final contribution salary pension scheme
  • Corporate bonus scheme

What are the details of the CNC Pensions Scheme and can I transfer my current Pension to this scheme?

The CNC uses the UKAEA Pension Scheme, which is currently available to both Police Officers and Police Staff and requires a minimum 5% employee contribution (this is subject to change). To find out more about our pension scheme, In the first instance please contact the Police Officer Recruitment Team on 03303 13540.

Equality and Diversity

Can I still join if I have a disability?

We welcome applications from candidates with disabilities and consider applications on a case by case basis. Police Officer applicants must be able to undertake the normal activities required of a Police Officer, and we will fairly consider whether reasonable adjustments can be made in the workplace to accommodate your disability.

What support is there for Officers and Staff who fall within minority categories?

We welcome applications from people of all backgrounds, and actively promote diversity within the Constabulary. The CNC work with several support groups which we are developing all the time.