Training and Salary


This is your chance to directly influence the safety of our community. What we do has a direct impact on society – and with the Professional Qualification in Probation (PQiP) programme, you’ll be given the tools and training needed to join us.

Download the PQiP PDF here.

The training and role

The 15-month PQiP programme features blended learning and a range of assessment methods. It’s based around distance learning with some face-to-face workshops and seminars, and you’ll be fully supported by your tutor and line manager here as well as your tutor at the university.

You’ll be employed by us for the duration and we’ll sponsor your fees too. You can apply to do the qualification in your preferred division:

Please note, however, that placements in particular office locations within your preferred division are not guaranteed.

Once you’ve completed the programme, you’ll be able to apply for a role as a Probation Officer (PO) however you will remain on contract as a PSO until you successfully apply. While training with us, you will gain experience of working with ‘high risk of serious harm’ offenders and you’ll be fully equipped to deal with all the different kinds of offenders in our care. Together, we can cut offending, protect communities, and give offenders the opportunity to become active members of society.

You’ll need some relevant experience to join the programme. This can be gained through either paid or voluntary work in any agency that involves working with the kind of challenging behaviour we see from offenders.

During your 15 months’ training you will be employed as a Probation Services Officer earning £22,039 – £27,373  plus London Weighting Allowance of £3,889 p.a., where this applies. In some areas the minimum starting salary has risen to £23,140; Norfolk & Suffolk, Kent, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Hampshire Local Delivery Units. You can see where these local delivery units are located by using the divisional maps above.

We offer a generous annual leave allowance of 25 days plus eight public holidays and you will also have the option to join the Local Government Pension Scheme. Upon successful completion of the programme, you will be eligible to apply for a permanent position as a qualified Probation Officer on a starting salary of £29,038 p.a. plus London Weighting Allowance, where this applies.

Once you've qualified, you'll continue to grow and develop as a Probation Officer – as no two days are the same, you'll be learning from each new situation. All the while, you will be making a real difference to offenders and the public, and helping reduce the risk of reoffending. Qualified Probation Officers can expect to work for the NPS in each of the following areas during their career:

  • Prison – working with high risk offenders during their sentence to prepare them for release (if this is appropriate). This means undertaking skilled work with prisoners to enable them to change and reduce the likelihood of reoffending or causing significant harm. Probation Officers will work alongside prison officers to resettle offenders. The role of Probation Officers within prison establishments is to use their expertise in risk assessment and management and to work with community teams towards reducing risk in the community upon release.
  • Court – working with a dedicated court team to prepare pre-sentence reports and to give advice to the court. The emphasis here is increasingly on preparing reports on the day to help Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service to do their job – and achieve justice in the most efficient way possible.
  • Community – managing offenders on community orders or who have been released on licence from prison. This means promoting resettlement and rehabilitation, reducing reoffending and managing risk.

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