Your Criminal Justice Career Resource
Sanctuary Criminal Justice is committed to helping you achieve your career ambitions. Our careers hub is a central resource for people at every stage of their criminal justice career. We hope you find it helpful.
Looking for help on how to progress your criminal justice career? Our blogs will help you. So, whether you need some CV pointers, want to be your best in an interview or wish to move into offender healthcare, why not have a read.
Using the right language on your CV
How can you ensure that your CV makes an impact? How do you get the balance between keeping things concise and being vague? This is where the choice of language comes into play. We’re not talking about being multilingual - although if you are, mention it on your CV! - we’re talking about moving away from clichés and freshening things up. The hiring manager has heard the phrases “great team player”, “hard worker” and “self-motivated” a hundred times before and whilst these things are important to mention, you should start making the most of action verbs within your descriptions. These are words which demonstrate your confidence and can easily be expanded upon during an interview scenario. “Action verbs are used to deliver important information in a sentence and add impact and purpose. These verbs play a vital role in grammar and signals to the reader what action the subject is performing in the sentence”- Source: YourDictionary.com. Making the most of action wordsLet’s look at some common examples and see how we can improve them through the inclusion of action verbs.Before: “Held regular planning meetings with multi-agency teams to reduce re-offending”After: “Established and supervised regular planning meetings with multi-agency teams to reduce reoffending”.The difference is clear. Simply using the addition of the words ‘established’ and ‘supervised’, the same sentence suddenly seems much more powerful and enhances the specific impact. Here’s another example. Before: “Worked with multidisciplinary staff and developed a specialist practice-based clinical model of care” After: “Championed strong working relationships with multidisciplinary staff and implemented a specialist practice-based clinical model of care” Again, the use of two action words really grabs your attention and makes you sound more confident and experienced.If you need help to improve your CV, then please get in touch with one of Sanctuary’s dedicated recruitment consultants.
Handling tricky career moments
We all dream of having a flawless CV; one which shows our career trajectory and highlights our expertise and knowledge. But whilst some lucky people have a career which is plain-sailing, others may find that they have had some ups and downs which could cast a shadow on their professional expertise. If you’re looking for your next criminal justice job role, then it may be wise to consider how your CV looks to potential hiring managers. You may know that you have the capability to handle the job role, but there may be some skeletons lurking in your career wardrobe which could cause doubt. Long periods of unemployment, health-related issues or even tricky moments from your past could be enough to prevent you from making the most of your opportunities.So, how can you handle these moments and present yourself as an ideal candidate for the job role? Let’s take a look…Always be truthfulHonesty is always the best policy when it comes to recruitment practices. Whether you were let go from a previous job role or you had an issue with a professional body, it’s always wise to be up-front with recruiters about what the situation was, and what you have learnt from it.In professions such as youth offending or probation, it’s not uncommon to find practitioners who may have been inspired to train as probation officers or substance misuse workers following their own personal experiences. If this is something that you have lived through, then rather than hiding away from your past, use it as a strength. Use your CV or your interview to demonstrate how your personal experience has guided your career; show how you’ve overcome any difficulties and how it makes you a stronger practitioner. In relation to your CV, make sure that everything is 100% accurate.Factual data such as employment dates or qualifications are easily identifiable so it’s imperative that you tell the truth. If a hiring manager undertakes basic checks and discovers that you’re not being honest, then you’ll quickly find yourself looking for a new opportunity.Explaining long career gaps doesn’t need to be difficultIf you’ve taken a long career gap (six months or more) then you may feel under pressure to explain your reasons. Regardless of whether it was a result of unemployment, health-related issues or even simply time off to recharge your batteries, it’s much more common than you may think. Making simple formatting changes can sometimes be enough to help you focus on your strengths whilst still remaining honest and truthful.If you are asked by any hiring managers about any career gaps, then the most important thing you can do is to show how you’ve kept your skills up to date during your break. If you’re working in a job role where professional registration is required (such as offender healthcare) then you may need to check with your professional body what the requirements are.For example, the Nursing and Midwifery Council have published strong guidance on how to return to practice following a career break.If you’ve used your time away to focus on voluntary work, then use your CV and/or your interview to explain how your new skills/experience are applicable to the workplace. You may be amazed to discover how transferable some skills are!Think about what you are saying and how you say itIf you’re in an interview, and you’re questioned about a time where you struggled with a co-worker, or you’re asked to explain why your contract was terminated by a previous employer it can be a natural reaction to go on the defensive. You may find old emotions are stirred up or you may struggle to hide your feelings. In an interview situation, this could be a huge turn-off for any prospective employers. If you know that you have a past moment which is likely to be discussed in an interview situation, practice what you want to say. You may find that your Sanctuary consultant is best placed to help you. After all, they can suggest how to explain certain career moments or practice some interview questions with you to help you with your nerves. Practicing what you want to say, and how you want to say it, can help you feel much more confident when answering tricky questions. If you have a delicate matter within your career history and you’re unsure how to address this on your CV or ahead of an interview, please make sure you speak with your Sanctuary consultant. We can work closely with you to find the most appropriate ways to share tricky moments, whilst simultaneously highlighting your strengths. If you need any advice or guidance, please make sure you give us a call.
Moving ahead in your probation career
Recently it was announced that the government will be re-nationalising offender supervision programmes from December 2020. Although many details are still to be confirmed, this could be an opportunity for some probation officers to further their careers, as these changes will undoubtedly lead to the creation of new senior or managerial positions. As specialist recruiters of POs and PSOs, we’re still waiting for clarification of how the new changes will impact upon recruitment, and we promise that we’ll share the information with you as soon as we have it. But in the meantime, if you are keen to move ahead in your probation career, then it’s wise to review your CV and ensure that you’re highlighting the most appropriate skills.Here is our advice on how to use your CV to further your probation career:Demonstrate your career progressionAs probation officers, you’ll likely have experienced continual career development throughout your career as you progress through the banding system. As your CV is the first point of contact for any prospective employer, you’ll need to demonstrate how your career has developed and what skills you have learnt. Make sure that you highlight any specific training workshops that you’ve participated in. If possible, try to explain what you learned from each course and how you’ve put that knowledge into practice. If you’re interested in moving away from working with offenders into a more managerial role, you may wish to undertake a PRINCE2 project management qualification. This will show that you have the skills and knowledge to manage a team and could differentiate yourself from other candidates. Showcase your work with multi-disciplinary teamsThose working in senior probation roles will find that they spend a lot of their time working across multi-disciplinary teams. For instance, you may find yourself attending different committees or sub-groups to represent your probation service. When you’re applying for managerial positions, take the time to showcase any work that you’ve done with multi-disciplinary teams – for example, you may have built close working relationships with youth offending teams as people transition into the adult probation system. Your work with external teams will likely be a topic of interest in any interviews, so try to think about situations where you’ve been able to successfully work together with others to achieve positive outcomes. Highlight your knowledge and passion for probationGreat probation managers and senior probation officers have a strong passion for what they do. They continually take the time to update their skills, read the latest research and discover new practice models. You can use your CV to highlight how you’ve tackled repeat offending and what you’ve learnt from other colleagues. We know that this could conflict with our previous guidance on how to cut down a lengthy probation CV, but it’s important to use your CV as an opportunity to showcase your knowledge to any prospective hiring panels. If you’re keen to move into a managerial role, an important task is to share information and guidance with other probation boards or regional groups. You will need to talk confidently about issues in your own area and how you’ve overcome them. This could also be a topic of interest during any interview panels, so consider if you have any situations or scenarios you could discuss with the interviewer. Consider your wider skill setFinally, it's important to think beyond just probation. You may have a variety of skills which are perfect for a managerial role, which goes beyond the traditional scope of a probation officer. We know that many of our probation candidates have a colourful career history. Perhaps you previously trained as a social worker, or maybe you’ve experience volunteering for a local community organisation where you were responsible for overseeing budgets. Think about what skills you have and consider how they could apply to a senior position. Use your personal profile to explain more about who you are as a person and describe what makes you such a strong candidate for the job role. If you need support writing your CV for your next probation job role, get in touch with your Sanctuary consultant. They’ll be able to help you adapt your CV, giving you the greatest chance of success.
Consider how much easier it would be if securing your next role was simply a couple of clicks away. That once registered, you only ever hear about jobs that tick every box. Where you can relax and even enjoy the process. At Sanctuary Personnel, we pair our candidates with roles we know are a direct match to their skills, knowledge, experience and future aspirations.
Created by our criminal justice and healthcare resourcing specialists, our tailored careers guides will give you an extra boost. Just putting some of our tips into place, you’ll be closer to landing your ideal role.
Criminal Justice CV Writing Guide
If you’re thinking about looking for a new criminal justice role, you’ll want to make sure your CV is in good shape; that it demonstrates your experience of supporting offenders. That’s why we’ve pulled together this guide to help you!By following a few key pointers on what information to include and in which order, it’ll be easier to secure your next position.Fill in the form below to begin the download:If you require further help with structuring your CV, please give our specialist team a call.
Criminal Justice Interview Guide
So you've landed an interview for the perfect criminal justice role. That's great news. It means, on paper, you're just the right match. Now it's time to impress at interview. But what do you need to do ahead of the big day? Our guide will tell you everything you need to know...Fill in the form below to begin the download:To practise answering interview questions which may come up in your interview, download our printable preparation sheets.If you need further help in preparing for your interview, contact your Sanctuary consultant today.
Criminal Justice CV Template
Your CV is the perfect opportunity to showcase your skills, experience, knowledge, and qualifications. You’ll want to stand-out from other candidates and hone-in on the attributes that make you the ideal person for the role. You’ll need to be clear and concise in what you write and know the order in which to present the information.Please fill in the form below to download our free CV template:For any further help in writing your CV, please contact your Sanctuary consultant today.
Criminal Justice Interview Preparation Sheet
If you're a Sanctuary Criminal Justice candidate, you'll already be a good match on paper. All you need to do ahead of your interview is simply order your thoughts and prepare your answers to some of the more frequently asked questions. Let our prep sheet help you...Fill in the form below to begin the download:If you haven't already, check out our interview guide; this document explains what you should do prior to the interview and what sort of answers the panel will be looking for.If you have any questions when preparing for your interview, contact your Sanctuary consultant.
We know working within the criminal justice system is not without its challenges. It can be hard to find the time to sit back and reflect on your career path. From the moment you register with us, we will be by your side, helping you make important decisions with our unbiased person-centred advice.
Key stages of our support during your careers
Looking for a Job
Enjoy exclusive access to a wide variety of suitable roles within the criminal justice system.Find your next offender healthcare, substance misuse, youth offending or probation role, quicker. With direct access to hundreds of criminal justice jobs across the UK, we know there’s an ideal role for you. How? Because we know how to match your experience, knowledge and your working preferences to positions that will help you move forward in your career. Each week, criminal justice employers, charities and private sector organisations, trust us to place people just like you into well-supported suitable roles. So, if you can’t find the perfect job today, there’s a high chance you’ll find it tomorrow. Enjoy exclusive access to the most sought-after criminal justice and offender healthcare roles and register today.
Applying for a Job
Let us take the weight out of the criminal justice job application process for you, with our job-matching service.It’s great to have many criminal justice roles to choose from. But how do you know that a job is an exact match? That it gives you the chance to use your existing skills and knowledge.Our Sanctuary Criminal Justice consultants place people first. We’ll never see you as a number. We recruit with integrity. We understand working in a criminal justice setting is challenging. But it can also be incredibly rewarding if you are placed in a suitable role. One you feel in supported and safe in. It’s our role to guide you throughout the application process. So, if your CV needs editing, we’ll advise you on exactly what you can do to make it sharper and more competitive. And if you want to move into a different area of criminal justice or would like to explore working in the non-for-profit sector, we can help with that too. A career with Sanctuary Criminal Justice is driven by your individual needs.Looking for a new job? Check out our latest criminal justice jobs.
We’ve found you a criminal justice role that's perfect for you. The next step is to highlight your skills at interview.We’ll only present you with job opportunities that are a direct match, whether you are looking for a locum or permanent role. This means, your chances of landing the role are higher than normal.Your consultant will know everything about your future employer. They’ll be aware of the demographics of the offenders currently being supported and the challenges faced. They’ll also have a strong understanding of the employer’s preferred models of care and support and they'll be familiar with the team set-up and working environment. Crucially, they’ll also know what processes the employer has in place to support you in your role. We pass this information on to you so that you can prepare for your interview. We even have a series of downloadable interview preparation resources.Looking for a new job? Check out our latest criminal justice jobs.
Register as a candidate with Sanctuary Criminal Justice and you’ll always make positive career choices.Everyone needs to feel looked-after, especially within the criminal justice system. Whilst you are busy caring for patients or helping offenders through their rehabilitation, we’ll help look after your professional self. We’ve helped thousands of criminal justice and healthcare professionals; we know exactly what makes a successful criminal justice career. Our approach always starts with understanding what makes you happy. Whilst we cannot resolve front line pressures, we’ll work closely with you to make sure you always feel in control of your career. Before each locum position comes to an end, we’ll already be hard at work identifying other opportunities based on your preferences and ambitions.Let's start the process, register with Sanctuary today!