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Devon & Cornwall Police
Contact Officer

It's busy but it's
YOUR CALL


In our Contact Centres we are at the front line of policing, providing that vital first point of contact between the public we serve in Devon & Cornwall and our operational Police Officers.

What does a Contact Officer do?

Talking to people in crisis can often appear to be a rather daunting and challenging prospect. You will need to listen very carefully to identify their needs, ask the right questions, risk assess the situation and decide how quickly police officers need to attend… all within a matter of minutes, or sometimes, seconds! Don’t worry! You will be fully supported throughout your apprenticeship to make sure that you have all the knowledge, skills and confidence to deal with any situation that you might be faced with. Below is a brief outline of your learning journey when you join Devon and Cornwall Police.

Your learning journey and recruitment timeline:

From Day 1 you will be classroom based with our dedicated and experienced Training Team who will take you through a detailed 7 week Initial Training programme covering all the main aspects of your new role.
When you leave Training, you will move to the Control Room where you will be assigned a Mentor who will be an experienced Contact Officer. Your Mentor will work side-by-side with you for an extended period as you continue your learning ‘on the job.’
After your mentoring period you will be working independently with support as you continue your development during your probationary period.
During your first 15 months with Devon and Cornwall, you will be contributing to your apprenticeship portfolio. You will need to gather together evidence, undertake some self study and complete activities to provide evidence against the ‘Level 3 Emergency Call Handling Apprenticeship’ standards. You will be given time within your working hours to do this and there is no expectation that you study outside of your rostered hours. You will be required to undertake a formal assessment at the end of the course but you will be assigned an Apprenticeship Facilitator who will support and guide you throughout. A requirement of completing the apprenticeship is that you must also hold or pass a Level 2 equivalent qualification in English and Maths. If you don’t have a level 2 equivalent (GCSE) qualification in English and/or Maths that is grade C or above, as well as the contact handling training, you will be provided with additional training in order to take these assessments.
Date Stage
12th July 2021 Eligibility and Application to apply via e recruitment opens
Wednesday, 21 July 2021 18:00 - 19:00 and Thursday, 29 July 2021 18:00 - 19:00 Online Awareness events
Midday 2nd August 2021 Eligibility and Application closes
Tuesday 3 August 2021 Situational Judgement Test sent via email
Tuesday 17 August 2021 Situational Judgement Test closes
Wednesday 18 August 2021 Complete online virtual assessment centre
Wednesday 25 August 2021 Closing date for virtual assessment centre
9th September 2021 to 12th September Interviews are planned for these dates and will be conducted during daytime and evening hours.


Do you tick these boxes?


Can you answer our call?

Well, if you do, then working with Devon and Cornwall Police as a Contact Officer could well be the career challenge that you are looking for! It’s the adrenaline rush when the call comes in; being there to make a difference. At Devon and Cornwall Police, we’re on the lookout for the listeners, supporters and the advisors, recruiting 999/101 Contact Officers (Emergency Service Contact Handler Apprentices) who can be there when people need it most.


You will play a critical role in our response to both emergency and non-emergency calls, providing a first class service to the public. You will be resilient, reliable and able to cope in a pressured environment – your decision making skills will be key. You will receive a huge variety of calls, often challenging in nature. At times you will be talking to people in potentially dangerous or vulnerable situations – they may be distressed or panicked and it is down to your ability to stay calm and determine the most appropriate response to make sure they get the help they need.


Resilience is a key factor of the Contact Officer role. It’s a 24/7 job so there will be times when you are working weekends, bank holidays and even Christmas Day some years. There will also be times when you are feeling tired and still having to take those extremely difficult and sometimes traumatic calls. Whilst it’s true that this is not a job for the faint-hearted, on the other hand you will be working in a great environment with plenty of support as part of the police Family.


You will receive a high standard of training both at the start and throughout your career as we support you to make the most of your qualities. As part of your initial development, you will complete an Emergency Service Contact Handler Apprenticeship.

Read what some of our current Contact Officers have to say about their experiences

Steve, what were you doing prior to becoming a 999/101 Contact Officer Apprentice?
Contact Officer Steve

“I worked in hospitality for brands like Nando’s and Harvester. My mum has worked for Devon & Cornwall Police as a Contact Officer for 16 years and I have always found it interesting. I thought it would be a great career change.”

Portia, what made you want to become a 999/101 Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Portia

“I have always had an interest in working for the police. I had experience in jobs providing customer service and talking over the phone so I felt I had the right skills for the role. I wanted a job that brought me job satisfaction and was not the same day to day.”

June, how were you supported when you were ready to take live 999/101 calls?
Contact Officer June

“I got the most amazing support from my mentor and supervisor! We discussed the setup of daily work and set some initial goals. We reviewed this regularly and this meant I could measure my progress and we could address areas I struggled with as I progressed.”

Ben, what is the main benefit of having your learning accredited with an apprenticeship?
Contact Officer Ben

“The impact of having the qualification would carry to any other workplace very well. Being a qualified Emergency Contact Officer is essentially saying that you’re a professional communicator.”

Bethan, how did you find your initial training?
Contact Officer Bethan

“I LOVED it! It was informative and fun. I felt prepared to go into the control room. Met a great group of people. The trainers included mock calls as part of our initial training which gave us the opportunity to practice.”

Lara, how were you supported when you were ready to take live 999/101 calls?
Contact Officer Lara

“Once we moved to Mentoring we were well supported and really allowed to move at our own pace, with some of us taking calls on the first day and others spending longer observing. I really felt as though I was part of a team.”

Hannah, what advice would you give to someone who is looking at becoming a Contact Officer as a career change?
Contact Officer Hannah

“It will be the most overwhelming and exhausting training period but everything comes together when you get in the room; you are in charge of the decisions about when you feel ready to take calls, develop and progress professionally.”

Jai, what made you want to become a 999/101 Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Jai

“I saw the post on Facebook initially and I thought it looked really interesting and a job that really could help someone in their hour of need.”

Jai, what is the best thing about being a Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Jai

“I enjoy the fact that every day is different and you always feel you are making a difference to at least one person’s day.”

Beth, what made you want to become a 999/101 Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Beth

“I have always wanted to work with the police, however having young children I didn’t feel that this was the time to be joining as a police officer. When I was at uni we visited Crownhill and the control room, the job sounded really interesting and rewarding. At home I was always watching police programmes on TV (999 What’s your emergency etc.) and would always think to myself that I would love to do that job. I love being able to help people and make a difference to their lives, I also love that every day is different and you never know what situation you are going to be dealing with.”

Beth, If you had to sum up your experience of your apprenticeship process in three words, which three words would you choose?
Contact Officer Beth

“Friendships, rewarding and support.”

Leah, what advice would you give to someone who is looking at becoming a Contact Officer as a career change?
Contact Officer Leah

“Don’t feel overwhelmed by all the new information, it will all come together.”

Leah, what is the best thing about being a Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Leah

“Making a difference every single day. I also love that I am able to carry out research to build a bigger picture for an incident. No day is the same!”

Millie, how did you find your initial training?
Contact Officer Millie

“Initial training was brilliant. We were a very small cohort of only 8, however we very quickly became a close knit group of life long friends. The trainers were great and provided us with a lot of information and insight into the job, making sure we were more than ready to dive into the world of being a contact officer. Many resources were available to us and exciting elements such as guest speakers really gave us a feel of the job we were entering.”

Louisa, what were you doing prior to becoming a 999/101 Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Louisa

“I was a Sub-Postmistress of a Post Office in North Cornwall.”

Louisa, what made you want to become a 999/101 Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Louisa

“I was looking for a career where I could help people, the work was varied and interesting and I could work as part of a team.”

Louisa, how did you find your initial training?
Contact Officer Louisa

“I really enjoyed the initial training. I learnt a lot about Devon and Cornwall Police and had a much better understanding of what’s involved in the role of a Contact Officer and the types of calls I will be taking.”

Ben, what is the best thing about being a Contact Officer?
Contact Officer Ben

“The team I have joined is amazing and in the whole of the contact centre, everyone is lovely and helpful, the opportunities moving forward, there are tons of steps to take for personal or career development.”

Ben, if you had to sum up your experience of your apprenticeship process in three words, which three words would you choose?
Contact Officer Ben

“Rollercoaster, enjoyable and positive.”


A workforce that reflects our communities


Our ability to build trust, understand problems and support our communities across a range of policing matters, relies on us having a workforce that is reflective of our communities and all the unique individuals that exist within them. We are committed to promoting equality and diversity within our workforce and to eliminating discrimination.

We are very keen to encourage applications from those that have never considered policing as a career. Representation within our workforce from black and minority ethnic communities and females is currently much lower than we want it to be; by improving this we will be better able to serve our local communities and our work place will benefit from all the differences in thinking, points of view, and approaches that diversity brings.

In order to achieve this we are proud to pursue a policy of ‘positive action’.

For further information and to register for this scheme please click the button below.


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