Writing a law enforcement resume isn’t that much different from writing one for other careers. Unfortunately, some people in this field believe that a resume isn’t needed simply because there is usually a long application that will need to be completed, as well. However, a well written law enforcement resume and cover letter should be included with your application. The cover letter will introduce you to the department. The resume can be looked at like a shortened application. Both are important.
Education, Experience, and Training
A law enforcement resume should include an objective statement, as well as sections about your education, training, and experience. Because most law enforcement professionals have so much training, there needs to be a separate section for this, apart from your education. Start with your education and include any police academy that you attended. The next section should contain your work history, including bullet points about your responsibilities and accomplishments. Whenever possible, use numbers and percentages to quantify these bullet points, since this will draw the eye of the reader.
List your training next. Most law enforcement professionals are required to take a certain number of continuing education classes each year. Many of these classes are highly sought after, such as those for drug interdiction and identification or accident reconstruction. List the most impressive and important classes first. You can list the rest as long as you have room. Remember to keep your law enforcement resume limited to one page.
You will want your law enforcement resume to look professional. This means choosing the most professional looking fonts, font sizes, and resume paper. Use a Times New Roman, 12 point font, as this is the most commonly used font for business communications. Avoid colored paper or ink; however, it is certainly worth your money to purchase a high quality resume paper. One inch margins are recommended and make sure that all of your bullet statements line up perfectly with one another.
Don’t Try to Add Too Much
One of the most difficult things when writing a law enforcement resume is not to “pad it.” Don’t include items that aren’t quite true. You know that a complete check of your education, training, and background will be completed. It’s simply not worth taking the chance.
Proofreading Is Crucial
One of the most embarrassing and detrimental things that you can do to your law enforcement resume is to let an error slide through. Spelling, grammar, and punctuation should be carefully checked. Have a friend read through the resume, too, because they can often catch a mistake that you missed. There is a lot of slang jargon used in law enforcement, but it may not be appropriate for your resume. Your friend should also look for acronyms that need to expanded on for all to understand.
A law enforcement resume should be included with any application, as should a cover letter. It is not only professional, but it gives the reader a chance to get an overview of who you are and what you can bring to the organization. Best wishes in your job search.