Career Planning For Public Services

Police & Fire Service


Education - Police

You will need English and Maths at C grade GCSE or at Level 2. Generally you will need to have lived in the UK for three years, be over 18 years old and pass enhanced background and security checks. A useful piece of education that can be used to increase your chances of becoming a police officer is volunteering.

Education - Fire Service

Physical attributes and personal qualities are more important than academic qualifications. If you have further education qualification then that would be useful for you to join the service. You also need to be over 18 and you will have to go through the NFS (National Fire Fighter Selection)

Physical - Police

You will have to pass a physical fitness test; doing so you will need to be reasonably fit. You must also be able to run for a reasonable distance.

Physical - Fire Service

You have to take part in The 6 National Fire fighter Fitness Tests; which are the ladder climb, Casualty evacuation, Ladder lift/Lower simulation, Enclosed spaces, Equipment assembly and equipment carry.

Medical - Police

You have to take part in a medical examination. you have to me healthy, mentally and physically.

Medical - Fire Service

You will have to take part in medical examinations, after this you will have to take various tests such as; a Hearing test, step test, lung function, physical stamina, general tests and a chest x- ray.

Other Requirements - Police

You must also have to do an eyesight test, if you fail to pass the test then it will lead to rejection. If you have previously applied to join the police service and have been unsuccessful then you have to wait 6 months for your initial rejection before you can re apply again. You will also have your financial status checked.

Other Requirements - Fire Service

You have to have your eyesight tested and you will also have to undergo psychological tests; such as working with numbers, understanding information, Situational Awareness and problem solving.


Application Form - Police & Fire Service

The application Form is the same for both of the services, and is the same for joining any public service.

Requirements & Advice For Completion

The advice that is given is;

  • to always keep it neat and clean.
  • complete in black ink.
  • sections that do not apply to you should be marked n/a.
  • photocopy the application form so that you can use the copies as draft entries.
  • To help with spelling and grammar errors, use Microsoft word.
  • Don't leave any sections blank.
  • Don't Use inappropriate words or comments.
Letters Of Application

To write a cover letter for the police you must cover your key skills, and why you should be chosen over anyone else. Also it is best if you write a rough draft and read over it at least 3 times before finalising. For the fire service you must include any work experience you might have done with the fire service, if so then it will increase your chances of getting the job. also as the same as the police cover letter you must also read over it and f highlight your key skills.

Personal Statements

In both services you need to explain how and why you are better than anyone else, and to explain what you can bring to the job.

Curriculum Vitae

For both services you must include information about yourself such as hobbies etc. You must also include any educational qualifications that you have achieved, and you should contain information on what you want to do in the future.

Selection Process - Physical Tests

There are more fitness tests to complete in the fire service than there is in the police service. If you do not pass al of the fitness tests then you will not be able to attain that specific job.

Skills Tests

There are more skills tests in the police than there is in the fire service.

Preparation For An Interview

You have to prepare for both public services interviews by writing down some of the question that you think they might ask you, and try to answer them as best as you can. Also keep good eye contact with the interviewer, if not then it show a lack of respect.


Police Public Service Skills

Police must have good communication skills: such as if they had to talk to someone using a walkie talkie and they had to read out the number plate of a car. They must do it correctly and make sure that it is understandable.

Good fitness levels is key in every public service but mainly in the police because they may have to run long distances, such as if they are having to chase after someone.

They must have Good eyesight because they need to see what is going on around them, and so that they are able to spot something that is going wrong.

Fire Service Public Service Skills

One of the most important skills needed to be in the fire service is to have good eyesight because they need to find people that could be injured in a house fire when it is full of smoke.

You must be physically fit so that you are able to cope with your work environment.

They must also have good communication skills; i.e. they might have to communicate on how to get people out of a burning building.

By Josh Greenwood