Starting your criminal justice job

You’ve got the job! What’s next?

By Liam Dale

So you got that job you were hoping for! And if you’re registered with Sanctuary, you will know that you are in capable hands. We will take full responsibility for handling contracts, confirming start days and ensuring you’re fully compliant so you can stay focused. Whether you’re working in offender healthcare, starting a new job within probation or joining a youth offending team, there’s much to consider ahead of your first day.

To help you on your way, we’ve listed a few things that you may want to consider before starting:

Time for a short break?

After leaving your current role, you may wish to take time out for yourself and enjoy a few days of rest and relaxation before you start a new contract. If you’re resigning from a permanent position, your ability to take a few days holiday between jobs may depend on your notice period and whether you have any annual leave left to take. Likewise, if you’re working on a short-term contract then you will need to be sure of your final contracted working date. 

Your Sanctuary consultant will liaise with the new employer and confirm your new start date, so if you do need a day or two to yourself, make sure your consultant is aware. This will allow them to factor it in on your behalf.

Practical preparations ahead of the big day

We will collect, verify and provide your security clearances (if required), compliance and immunisation documentation to your new employer before your start date. We will also continue to monitor document expiry dates throughout your employment and remind you before any are about to expire.

Have you planned your route to work? If you’re making the most of public transport, how does this fit in with shift work? If you’re going to drive, do you know where the nearest car park is and how much change you may need? You may benefit from googling the journey at the time you plan to leave; using a tool such as Google Maps could help you to spot any high traffic areas and plan alternative routes. No one wants to be late for their first day, so you may even wish to do a practice run ahead of time.

Check the latest legislation

In today’s changing political climate, we’re seeing a fast-paced evolution across all areas of criminal justice. From the announcement that probation will be re-nationalised through to the latest stages of the Domestic Abuse Bill 2019, it’s important to ensure that your knowledge is up-to-date. 

We use our blog pages to discuss sector-related news and also recommend checking in with the latest news from the Ministry of Justice and the Department for Health and Social Care. 

Remind yourself of the job role

If you’re moving into a new probation or youth offending role, then you are likely going to be working in a similar position. However, every company operates differently, and what may be standard practice for one employer may be different in another. 

Before you walk in on your first day, re-read the original job description. It will remind you of what the employer is looking for, and why they chose you to fill the position. If there are specific references to key areas within the role, then make sure you are confident in your knowledge of those specialisms. 

First day jitters are normal

First day nerves are normal, but everyone will be keen to make a good first impression. We always recommend that you walk in with a big smile and take the time to join in with conversations. If you show that you’re warm and approachable, a good listener and a hard worker you’ll soon be a much-loved member of the team.

We have written a series of blogs around starting and navigating your probation career. For any additional help in preparing for your first day, please contact your Sanctuary consultant.