Prisoner Custody Officer (PCO)
Great Prisoner Custody Officers (PCOs) are key to the smooth running of our prisons. They have an important role to play in supporting prisoners with their rehabilitation and creating a positive and safe environment.
What makes a great PCO?
We’re looking for people who will be a natural fit for the job. Background and experience are not important. It’s the kind of person you are that matters. We can teach you the rest.
Are you responsible, reliable and good at building trust with others?
Are you the sort of person who:
- Is reliable, true to your word and can always be depended on to get things done?
- Always treats others fairly and with respect? Are you able to see past bad behaviour and start each day afresh?
- Is quick to notice things, such as changes in people’s moods or when something isn’t quite right?
- Is consistent – people know where they stand with you. Do you stick to the important rules (or if not you have very good reasons not to)?
- Can easily connect and talk to all sorts of people from different backgrounds on their level?
- Is straightforward and ‘tell it as it is’?
- Helps others out including helping people find ways to help themselves?
- Keeps calm under pressure
What’s the job like?
You might be working on a main wing with a team of other PCOs responsible for prisoners. Your role will involve everything from managing the regular prison routines, (locking & unlocking, supervising meals and recreation time to escorting people to prison work and education). You’ll need to deal with the more challenging aspects of prison life such as abusive and violent behaviour. You’ll be working with all sorts of prisoners including those on long sentences, people convicted of serious crime and vulnerable individuals.
Why be a PCO?
People enjoy it for many reasons. Some enjoy the variety and challenge of working with very different people and dealing with all sorts of issues. Others get a buzz from seeing the prisoners improve and progress (however small the changes).
Many PCOs appreciate the security and stability of the regular work routines. Others appreciate shift patterns, which allow them flexibility to carry out their responsibilities outside of work.
The Ideal Candidate
No previous experience required
Our great PCOs come to us with all kinds of work and life experience. Some have worked in retail, healthcare, call centers and as taxi drivers. Others are ex-military, police and security services personnel. The work you’ve done before doesn't matter. What matters is that you’re ‘made of the right stuff’ – the rest you will learn during our intensive 9 week training course and then in the job with the support of experienced colleagues.
- Full completion of application form on Sodexo careers website by Tuesday 8th October 2019. (You must have completed the online security questionnaire and have a CV uploaded or your application will automatically be rejected)
- Fitness test : 24th and 28th October 2019. This will involve completing a bleep test and the result does not mean you will not progress to interview as it will not be an automatic pass or fail.
- Face to face interviews: 11th – 22nd November 2019 these dates are subject to change
- Start Date of course: 6th January 2020 (you must not have any holidays booked for the first 9 weeks due to the training course you must complete.)
If you have holidays during the training that cannot be cancelled, we will be unable to proceed with your application.
If you have been interviewed for this role within the last 12 months, your application will not be proceeded with.
Please note: These dates are subject to change. initial communication will be via email, please monitor your junk and spam folders to ensure you are aware of next stage requirements.
The basic salary is £22,700 rising to £23,312 after 12 months following successful probation and assessment of skills. We give excellent benefits including free onsite parking, pension, 28 days holiday (inclusive of Bank Holidays) and access to a huge range of discounts and benefits including up to 55% off cinema tickets.
The working pattern is 40 hour shifts pattern, including evenings, weekends and bank holidays.
About the Company
Sodexo Justice aims to change lives for the better by reducing reoffending and improving the quality of life for those under our supervision and in our care. We deliver safe, effective and innovative custodial and community rehabilitation services that challenge offending behaviour, protect the public and offer individuals the opportunity to change their lives for the better. We deliver the total operation of five prisons within the UK and own six Community Rehabilitation Companies in partnership with crime reduction charity Nacro.
We are building on our support to the Armed Forces community through the development of specific pathways within our recruitment process to support ex-forces personnel and reservists, those applying for jobs with us who meet the ideal candidate criteria for the role advertised are guaranteed to progress to the selection process.
Sodexo and our clients are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and adults within a regulated activity. Certain roles will require applicants to undergo screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and/ or Disclosure Scotland.
Please note all roles within Sodexo Justice are subject to security and recruitment checks which may include a Social Media Check. You will also be asked to provide 5 years’ worth of references and request employment history details from the HMRC.