Before applying, please ensure that you meet our eligibility criteria detailed below.
You must be able to answer 'Yes' to the following statements:
I hold a UK passport or am a British Citizen, member of the EC or other states in the European Economic Area. If you are a Commonwealth Citizen or a foreign national, you must be resident in the UK free from restrictions and with indefinite leave to remain in the UK
I have lived in the UK continuously for the last three years. This does not apply to those serving abroad with the British Armed Forces
I am 17 years old or older at the point of application. If you are 17, you can go through the recruitment and selection process, but will not receive an offer of employment until you have turned 18
I have not been unsuccessful in an application for the same role with any home office force in the last six months
I have a full UK category B manual driving licence. For a short time we are accepting applications if you do not yet have a category B licence on the condition that you successfully pass your test within 35 weeks of the start of your training. You should note that if you do not obtain a full UK category B manual driving licence within this time it could result in termination of your employment. If you’re due to obtain your licence in the coming weeks, please mark this as pending on your application
Commonwealth citizens and foreign nationals can also apply if you have leave to enter or remain in the UK indefinitely and you're free of restrictions
there are no height restrictions for those wishing to join us
We are currently offering four entry routes on the Investigate First detective pathway. Depending on which entry route you choose, the academic requirements differ. Visit entry routes to find out more about the requirements for each route.
Whichever route you choose, you’ll receive the best possible training and support.
We have agreed intake sizes for each of our entry routes. If oversubscribed, it may be necessary for us to make changes to your entry route to secure your earliest joining date. If this is the case, we will contact you.
We are currently accepting transfer of successful SEARCH, National online assessment or day one results if obtained within the last 24 months.
If you meet this criteria, please attach your detailed results to your application (you can request these from the force you originally passed with) and declare this on your application form. If acceptable, we will transfer these results and you will not be required to undertake our online assessment stage.
Please note: This option is not applicable if your original application was unsuccessful within the past six months (not including voluntary withdrawal).
Policing is not easy. Not only do you need determination and drive but you also need to be healthy and have a good level of fitness.
Some medical conditions can prevent you from being able to cope with the physical and mental demands of the job.
You will be required to run a 15 metre track in time with bleeps which get increasingly faster. You need to meet level 5.4 on the bleep test to be successful.
If you fail on your first attempt don't worry. You're allowed two more attempts within 12 weeks (second attempt after six weeks, third attempt six weeks later). If after the third attempt you are not successful, we will be unable to continue with your application.
All applications will be assessed on an individual basis with issues such as size, nature, prominence, and military context/references taken into consideration.
Tattoos which could reasonably be interpreted as discriminatory or offensive and/or indicate attitudes or views inconsistent with the College of Policing’s Code of Ethics and the Standards of Professional Behaviour will always be deemed unacceptable and will prevent you from being able to join us.
Whilst not exhaustive, we have the following guiding principles:
visible tattoos of weapons (such as images of knives, firearms etc) are unlikely to be acceptable
visible tattoos depicting controlled drugs (such as cannabis leaves, spliffs etc) are unlikely to be acceptable
visible tattoos depicting violence, suffering or death are unlikely to be acceptable (simple images of skulls will not usually fall within this category)
visible tattoos in the style of ‘el dia de los muertos’ (The Day of the Dead) are unlikely to be acceptable if they fall in to one of the above categories, however not all tattoos in this style will necessarily be unacceptable (examples of unacceptable tattoos in this style would include women with their lips stitched together and images of decomposing features)
visible tattoos which indicate political support are unlikely to be acceptable
visible tattoos which are sexually explicit or depict nudity are unlikely to be acceptable
tattoos on the hands, face and neck will only be approved by exception
a higher tolerance threshold will be applied to tattoos which are not visible in standard uniform dress, however tattoos which are considered incompatible with Kent Police values will still not be acceptable
If you have a body piercing or other body modification you may be considered eligible to apply.
We'll check it to make sure it doesn't breach the Standard of Professional Behaviour for serving police officers or constitute a risk to health and safety.
Ideally, you shouldn't have a criminal conviction or cautions record. If you do have one, eligibility will depend on the age and nature of the offence.
We're unable to confirm whether your convictions record will affect your application before you apply, but will determine this from information provided during the recruitment and selection process.
If you don't tell us about any cautions, investigations or criminal convictions, your application could be refused.
It's important that you're not under pressure from un-discharged debts or liabilities and that you can manage loans and debts sensibly.
You will not qualify for vetting clearance if you:
have existing county court judgments (CCJs) outstanding
have been registered bankrupt and have not discharged your bankruptcy. You will not be considered until three years after the discharge of the debt. Debt Relief Orders (DRO) are treated in the same way as bankruptcy
if you refuse to discuss a relevant matter or engage with the vetting process