If you think that law enforcement is the career that you want to prepare for, then have a look at the various job openings that agencies at local, state and federal level can offer. Law enforcement offers a great range of jobs that require different skills and abilities. The common thing between them is the readiness to serve and protect the community .

find law enforcement job

To start a job in law enforcement means to embrace the numerous opportunities it offers. As a starter, you need to decide the level of law enforcement agency you want to join – local, state or federal. Then, you have to determine the type of job – whether you want to be part of the police force and be actively on the street, or you are more skilled with computers and technology and better equipped to fight cybercrime, for example. It is also worth noting that law enforcement is suitable for those who are looking to start their career, those who want a career change and it is a great place for military veterans as well.  

Regardless of the position you want for your future employment, it is good to know where to look for job openings. Here are some suggestions, that can help both with deciding what job to choose and where to find it.   

Decide what you want to do 

Before you start browsing the job openings, you need to decide what type of law enforcement career you want to pursue. There are several tiers that you need to go through in order to select the job you want. 

  1. Choose between local, state and federal law enforcement agency 

Law enforcement offers you the opportunity to choose between three levels of agencies that you can join – local, state and federal. Any position on each of these levels has its pros and cons in terms of career growth and promotions, working hours, availability, readiness to move around, etc.  

  1. Choose between sworn and non-sworn positions 

Another choice that you need to make is whether you want to work as a sworn or non-sworn officer. In most of the cases as a sworn officer, you will have to start your job as patrol and then move up the ranks in the department and become a detective or join a specialized unit as the K-9 unit for example. There are candidates, who want to be part of the law enforcement but find that being a police officer isn’t for them and hence prefer civilian jobs. 

Once you decide on these two major issues, you can then think of a specific job that you want to perform. Keep in mind that in any case you need to go through all the steps of the hiring process that include written exam, physical agility exam, polygraph test, medical examination, oral board interview and background check. Sgt Godoy has prepared excellent courses on most of the elements that can help you pass the tests with ease: Police Exam practice tests will prepare you for your written exam, Mastering the Police Interview  gives you important guidelines for the Oral Interview while Mastering the polygraph can prepare you for sitting the polygraph test, which is feared by many candidates.  

How to recognize the best site for job openings 

There are several ways to find jobs in law enforcement. You can check directly on the website of the police department or law enforcement agency that you are interested in applying with. There you can find information about the vacancies, the upcoming exam dates, and the requirements you need to be hired by the agency. The difficulty is that if you are interested in several departments you will need to check a lot of sites in order to find what you need.  

One of the best ways to find the right job openings is to visit a website that offers a list of the newest law enforcement job openings all in one place and from all types of agencies. Go Law Enforcement is such a place that provides you with all the information that you need. In addition to a comprehensive list of job openings, you will also find lots of useful information about law enforcement such as different online courses that can help you achieve your dream. There are also articles which can help you decide the right job for you.

How to find federal law enforcement job openings 

For many people, working at a federal law enforcement agency is considered one of the most prestigious undertakings and hence they are looking for a way to become a federal agent. There is a wide range of federal agencies that recruit people in various positions. You can join federal law enforcement as a uniformed officer, federal agent, or work in any number of the supportive roles. 

There are several ways to search for federal jobs. One way is to select the federal agency you want to work for and then keep checking to see what openings they have. Another way is to search based upon the type of job. Doing this will turn up openings with multiple agencies. In the job announcement will be the job description, the requirements, salary, and how to apply.

Some of the most popular agencies include FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), U.S. Marshals Service, which are under the Department of Justice. 

The Department of Homeland Security also oversees several agencies that include US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Intelligence Division of HSI (Homeland Security Intelligence), United States Coast Guard, United States Secret Service and others.   

Where to find civilian jobs in law enforcement 

If you want to be part of law enforcement but you do not see yourself as a police officer, there is also a great number of non-sworn or civilian positions that you can apply for. You can look for these positions listed in local, state and federal government bodies or on specialized sites, such as Go Law Enforcement. 

As a non-sworn part of the law enforcement agency, you can work in various areas: 

  • Some community jobs are the link between the citizens and the agency such as 911 dispatchers or victim services and advocates.  
  • There are members of correctional staff who deal with convicted criminals, such as correctional officers, social workers and even vocational training instructors and dentists.  
  • Crime analysis is yet another popular sphere for non-sworn staff. You can also work as a civilian investigator, forensic technician, or in Information Technologies. 
  • Clerical staff members are also very important for each law enforcement agency as they are responsible for its organization and readiness. If you love research, planning and managing paperwork, this can be a great position for you. You can also serve as a public information officer and maintain the communication between the agency and the media. 

To apply for a civilian job, you need to have specific education and/or work experience depending on the position you have chosen.  

As you can see there is a great variety of law enforcement positions at different levels and the profession is open to people with various skills and knowledge. Knowing where to look for a job is the first step to finding the right law enforcement job for you.  

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