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Rich7543  
#1 Posted : 15 May 2017 10:36:47(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Rich7543

Hi everyone,

I'm new to the forum and was just after some advice. I'm currently a police officer with eight years frontline experience. For a couple of reasons that I won't bore you all with I'm currently considering a career change. A career in health and safety has appealed to me for a while as it interests me and seems to fit the skill set I have developed in the police but with a young family I have only recently had the opportunity to explore it further.

Having looked across this forum I see a number of people joining the IOSH world from construction/engineering backgrounds. My question to the experienced members out there is would my policing background be a help or hinderance in gaining employment? Am I likely to be overlooked without experience in industry?

I'm fairly happy with the route in and am seriously considering enrolling on the NRCQ diploma I just don't want to invest a significant amount of time and money to find I am going to be lacking in the necessary work experience when it comes to job hunting at the end. Any advice/insights would be appreciated.
solidpine  
#2 Posted : 15 May 2017 10:48:21(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
solidpine

I for one would welcome the experience you could bring to the roles,
David Bannister  
#3 Posted : 15 May 2017 11:14:33(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
David Bannister

Sadly, many job opportunities are via agencies and their initial sifting of CVs may well be done by computer or drones. Thus if experience is on the person spec then lack of experience will result in rejection.

Even the better agencies and employers will be hit by so many applications for any job that the first trawl through the pile will be brutal.

It is therefore essential that any CV is expressly prepared for the role being applied for with skills etc clearly stated and closely matched to what's being asked for.

Zyggy  
#4 Posted : 15 May 2017 13:48:56(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Zyggy

Rich, I have to agree with David's take on the situation.

However, one area that you may be qualified to consider is in the sport/entertainment industry where a number of ex police officers are involved with crowd safety/security issues - not "mainstream" H&S.

Good luck in whatever you decide to do.
jodieclark1510  
#5 Posted : 15 May 2017 14:11:27(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
jodieclark1510

As with anything it takes time- I self funded my qualifications to get into health and safety with little experience to go on ( I got my criminology degree and ended up being a cleaner for a time) It took some time and I had to grasp any possible experience I could but I got into my first role in 2014, and now in a role I wouldn't change for the world. I revamped my CV to steer it more towards a health and safety role with the skills/ qualifications I already possessed when my contract was coming to an end, within 3 weeks I was offered the role I am currently in. Experience is a major player, but it is not everything- knowing where your knowledge sits and your limit is just as important. It may mean initially looking into junior, admin or dual roles to help give you a bit of grounding ( I was h/s admin and a PA in my first role), or see if you can get involved in something within your current role, see if you could shadow an advisor/ officer etc.

Edited by user 18 May 2017 08:24:14(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

cres  
#6 Posted : 16 May 2017 10:51:17(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
cres

Hi,

Not that I want to divert you but, as H&S is fab but it is hard to get your foot in the door. Have you considered going into Loss Prevention. A collegue at my last company joined from the police force to work on all loss prevention investigations. Hes doing a few extra training courses but essentially he came to the company with just his police skill set which is perfect for carrying out all investigations leiasing with police etc the investigations can range from petty theft to organised credit card fraud, fuel card theft etc... 

I have to say he is very good and seems to love it so may be that could be an idea.

sappery760  
#7 Posted : 18 May 2017 07:01:06(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
sappery760

Whilst I wish you all the best in life I strongly advise that you reconsider H&S as a new career as the good days [which were only ever good for a few -me being one of them for 30 years in high pay etc. areas] are truly gone and will not return - I have many frends who are serving officers + retired who state that the police as a career for most is not what it was however its still great compaired to the majority in other daily occupations

you obviously have much to offer so look at other areas as suggested herein and again I wish you all the best

WatsonD  
#8 Posted : 18 May 2017 12:21:52(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
WatsonD

I think you will be able to pick a lot out of your experience which will be of great use for a H&S role. Obviously your experience would not necessarliy be enough for role which would require specific specialisms, such as engineering, construction, radtion, etc. but I am sure you are aware of this.

I'm not really one who has time for people who advise against this as a profession, in my experience they have no real knowledge outside of their own industry to be able to compare fairly and objectively to other professions and industries.

I am sure H&S was much better 30 years ago - however, I am sure there are also those who have been in the police force for just as long who would say the same. I imagine this would be the same of pretty much every profession if you asked someone who had been in it just as long.

Shopland23872  
#9 Posted : 21 May 2017 11:07:22(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Shopland23872

As said above, loss prevention is the best way for you to get a foot in the door for an ex police officer. Because loss prevention covers all areas of security plus some areas of health and safety. My first boss when I started as a loss prevention officer (basically a security guard with basic safety knowledge and duties) was an ex royal protection squad sgt, who studied H&S whilst being a loss prevention manager, funded by the employer. I would recommend the retail sector for you, and sign yourself up for the basic CIEH one day course first (which is suitable for retail), then move on from there. I did this route and it paid off for me. I have been in civils and construction for the last 16 years so it is perfectly possible to move industries once you have some experience under your belt.
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