Assuming you now have the form all printed out, let's take a look at it page by page. The Government has standardised the form now so whichever force you are applying to, it should be the same (well, that's the theory - let me know if your experience proves this wrong!).
First and most important - take a deep breath! This is a fairly long application form which asks for a lot of information. It's important that you take plenty of time planning what you're going to write.
This form is the first hurdle - if you muck this stage up, you can put your police career on hold for at least six months (the length of time you must wait before you can re-apply). Police forces on average can receive up to seven applications for every place that they have to fill. This means that recruitment officers are quite ruthless when it comes to rejecting applicants at this early stage - they will take the slightest flaw in your application as an opportunity to screen you out!
Some basic rules for filling out the form:
- Ensure that you have read the instructions (at the back of the form) carefully, and comply with them exactly
- You must complete the sections in your own handwriting, in black ink
- Keep the form neat, tidy and clean (no crossings out, coffee stains or smudges!)
- Practice filling out the forms two or three times before you actually fill in the "final" form you are going to send off
- Don't miss out any part of the form
- Watch your writing for inappropriate language or comments!
- Answer everything truthfully. Lying on your application form would not be a good start to your police career, now, would it?!
Filling it in!
The form is broken down into a number of sections, with several pages in each section. Here each section and page of the form is explained carefully, together with some hints and tips on how to complete the form. Use the links in the menu to the right of this text to work your way through the form, or to get help on a specific section.
- Download the current application form here from our download section (requires free registration).
- Apply online here on the PoliceCouldYou website (official police recruitment site)