Police Constables: stages of application
When applying to Cheshire Constabulary as a Police Constable, you will progress through seven stages. These stages are listed below to help you understand the process you are about to embark on. All candidates are required to successfully pass every stage of the process to be recruited as a Police Constable.
We are an equal opportunities employer and are committed to attracting, supporting and developing a workforce representative of the communities that we police and serve. We strive to ensure that all personnel practices, including recruitment are applied consistently and fairly. As such we expect all staff involved in the recruitment process to share this commitment.
Therefore, throughout the recruitment process, the members of staff and assessors involved are trained to the highest standard, ensuring that the principles of the Equality Act are adhered to. This is supported through our Standards of Practice and Unconscious Bias training that is delivered to all of our assessors.
Prior to starting your application you are advised to complete the College of Policing pre-application questionnaire.
At the end of each stage of the recruitment process, you will be notified whether or not you have been successful and therefore eligible to proceed to the next stage. All correspondences will be sent via email from MFSS Resourcing.
We welcome applications from all members of the community who are willing to work at any location across the county and who meet out eligibility and recruitment standards.
Reasonable adjustments and accommodations
It is important that you consider if you would like to request arrangements that will assist you in completing the selection process. For example, in relation to disability, dyslexia, learning difficulties, pregnancy, menopause, religion or belief, injury etc. Any requests for reasonable adjustments will be considered and arranged where possible. This information will be treated with the utmost confidence. If you require any support or further information please email us at the earliest opportunity.
1. Application form
You are required to complete an application form. The application form consists of personal information as well as regarding your motivation for applying to be a Police Constable with Cheshire Constabulary.
During the eligibility stage we will check that you meet all of the criteria previously detailed before continuing with your application; these will include:
- declared convictions
If you do not meet the eligibility criteria your application will not be progress with and you will be withdrawn from the recruitment process.
Further information about eligibility criteria can be found on the College of Policing website.
What is the College of Policing online assessment process?
The College of Policing online assessment process is an online process for the recruitment of police constables. It is a series of stages containing exercises that test the key competencies and values that are important for police constables.
The Competency and Values Framework (CVF) sets out the behaviours expected of everyone working in policing.
What does the online assessment process involve?
The online assessment process is a staged process that consists of up to four exercises over three stages.
The process is broken up as follows
- Stage 1 – Situational judgement test (SJT)
- Stage 2 – Competency-based video interview
- Stage 3 – Written exercise and briefing exercise
No prior knowledge of the role of a police officer or any policing knowledge is required to complete the exercises. Further information on the role profile of a police constable can be found on the College of Policing website.
How do I begin the online assessment process?
Once you have completed your force application, you will receive an email informing you to complete stage 1 of the online assessment.
Your journey as a candidate
Please see below a breakdown of the online assessment process from a candidate perspective.
Candidate applies to Cheshire Constabulary
Candidate undertakes application and eligibility checks
Stage 1: Situational judgement test
Approximate time to complete: 30 minutes
Stage 2: Competency-based video interview
Candidates who pass stage 1 are invited to take stage 2 immediately.
Approximate time to complete: 35 minutes
Stage 3: Written exercise
Stage 3: Briefing exercise
Successful candidates will be invited to take stage 3, which will consist of two separate exercises.
Approximate time to complete both written and briefing exercise: 45 minutes each.
How should I approach the online assessment process?
- Be professional.
- Stay relaxed.
- Have an open mind.
- Be yourself.
- Behave as naturally as possible.
- Remember that all the information you will need is provided to you.
- Read and listen to instructions carefully.
- Enjoy the experience and your opportunity to demonstrate what you are capable of.
How to plan for your online assessment
- Read relevant documents sent to you by Cheshire Constabulary.
- Read the CVF and think about how you can demonstrate the competencies and values being assessed.
- Get a good night’s sleep.
- Ensure you have all the relevant equipment required to access the exercises online.
- Ensure the system you use is up to date and working at full capacity to support performance.
To enable forces to continue with PC recruitment in light of COVID-19 the new online assessment is currently being rolled out across all forces. To support this process, Cheshire Constabulary will progress candidates to interview using random allocation. Please do not worry if you are not progressed, there will be further opportunities to be invited to interview throughout 2021.
4. Cheshire Constabulary interview
Candidates successful at the Assessment who meet the Cheshire Constabulary standard will be invited to an in force interview. This is a panel interview in front of Operational Officers and Police Staff representatives which will last approximately 30 – 45 minutes.
To support this process, Cheshire Constabulary will progress candidates to interview using random allocation. Please do not worry if you are not progressed, there will be further opportunities to be invited to interview throughout 2021.
The Interview will be assessed against the Competency and Values Framework (CVF). Questions will be based on the four values of the CVF and candidates will be required to demonstrate their values across the interview, providing the rationale and evidence (Level 1) to demonstrate their suitability for the role of Police Constable with Cheshire Constabulary.
The panel members will all have received an interview briefing as well as training in Standards of Practice and Unconscious Bias to ensure fairness and legitimacy of process.
Candidates who pass interview stage will receive an update from MFSS Resourcing on how their application will be progressed. Candidates are progressed in line with the principles detailed above and the intake numbers, a candidates application may be put on hold.
5. Pre-employment checks
A conditional Offer of employment will be issued to candidates who are being progressed onto an intake. Candidates will not automatically receive a conditional offer if they pass the interview stage, a candidates application may be put on hold. Candidates are advised not to hand their notice into their current employer upon receipt of a conditional offer.
The pre-employment checks that you will be required to successfully complete within the agreed timescales are as follows:
- fitness test
- signed GP statement (fees payable by applicant)
- opticians (fees payable by applicant) - Cheshire Constabulary is a force which does require individuals to meet Group 2 DVLA standards and therefore must be able to undertake blue light driving.
- occupational Health (medical appointment)
- drug screening Test
- Final vetting/security checks
If you require further information on the medical standards including eye sight standards, please visit the gov.uk website
Candidates have two attempts to complete the fitness test, candidates will be invited back to re-take the fitness test 3 weeks after their initial attempt. Failure to complete it on the second attempt will result in your application being withdrawn.
Any non-attendance or delay in attending appointments or this stage of the process may result in you not meeting a specific intake date and you application to join Cheshire Constabulary either being put on hold or being withdrawn.
To ensure you are fit enough to be a police officer, you will undertake a fitness test.
We are looking for the minimum standard to demonstrate you will be able to work effectively as a police officers.
6. Offer of employment
Once we have received back satisfactory pre-employment check you will be sent a Formal Offer of employment. Your start date will be dependent on when there is an intake with Cheshire Constabulary.
Candidates are advised, not to hand in their notice until they have received their final offer of employment.
7. Start your training
You will commence your 16 weeks training at Cheshire Police Headquarters, Winsford. Embedded within the training is the Initial Police Learning and Development Programme (IPLDP).
This is a national programme, led by the College of Policing, to modernise Police Probationer training throughout the country.
The IPLDP aims to assess student officers throughout their two year probationary period against ten National Occupational Standards.
Cheshire Constabulary reserves the right to retract an offer at any stage of the on-boarding process.