Do a job that matters and help keep our communities safe.

As a PCSO you will prevent crime and protect the vulnerable.

You’ll be a role model and highly visible source of strength for local people.

Whether dealing with anti-social behaviour, taking statements, or gathering evidence you will be a key part of our local policing team.

In return we promise you a good starting salary, excellent training, opportunities for progression and the pride that comes from helping others.

More about the role

As a PCSO you’ll do a vital job: helping local people, preventing crime, and supporting officers.

You’ll be out in the community, building relationships and understanding local issues.

You’ll protect the people of Sussex, especially those that need our help most.

You will do this by:

  • going on highly visible foot patrols
  • reassuring the public after minor crimes or anti-social behaviour
  • speaking community, religious and business leaders
  • working with young people and local schools
  • making house visits to gather intelligence
  • collecting CCTV evidence
  • carrying out missing person enquiries
  • protecting crime scenes until police officers arrive
  • providing crime prevention and personal safety advice
  • supporting police officer colleagues to solve local problems


You will be a reassuring presence in communities and, as such, will be deeply valued by local people.

This is a rewarding role for people who take pride in helping others.

Find out more about life as a PCSO here.

Have you got what it takes?

PCSOs are on the frontline of policing – out and about on the streets of Sussex talking to people, building bridges and winning the trust of communities.

So you’ll need to be a great communicator with a calm and confident personality.

You’ll be able to listen carefully to people, think through problems and find solutions. You will also be a great team worker, supporting colleagues and working in partnership with community leaders.

Broad life skills and experience will really help you in this job. We need people who are resourceful, diplomatic and in touch with the real world.

We are also want people from diverse background including those from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds and those identifying as White Other.

But, above all, you’ll be someone who cares about others and wants to see them safe and well.

Are you eligible?

To apply for the role you will need to:

  • have a GCSE, or equivalent Level 2 qualification, in Maths or English (or have achieved Functional Skills Level 2 in English and Maths Level 2 by the time you complete your training)
  • have a full UK manual driving license by the time you’re offered a role
  • be aged 18 years or over on the day you apply (there is no upper age limit)
  • have lived in the UK for three continuous years immediately prior to application
  • have leave to enter or leave to remain and work in the UK for an indefinite period
  • not be a member of the British National Party (BNP) or other similar organisations for example Combat 18 or The National Front
  • not have tattoos that are perceived to be aggressive, offensive or not representative of our values
  • not have more than six penalty points on your driving licence and/or two or more motoring offences within three years prior to applying
  • not have served a prison sentence

What we offer you

This is a job that matters to the public, but it also matters to us.

You’ll be a hugely important part of the Sussex Police team and, as such, we will give you:

  • Exceptional training (resulting in a Level 4 Diploma in Community Policing Practice) – see below
  • Generous basic pay of £21,507 plus an unsocial hours shift allowance of approximately £5,000 per year (increasing incrementally each year)
  • 24 days holiday a year (increasing to 29 days after five years’ service) and access to many additional benefits. Click here for more details.
  • Opportunities to develop your career and progress within the force (once you have completed two years as a PCSO) – while many of ours PCSOs choose to stay in the role there are many opportunities to explore other roles and we will help you develop no matter what your interest.

PCSO training

You will be among the first in the country to benefit from our new 12-month apprenticeship programme. This will give you the best possible training and a Level 4 Diploma in Community Policing Practice – equivalent to an HNC, a foundation degree, or the first year of an undergraduate degree.

The training remains focused on practical policing with the majority of learning taking place on the job and out in the public alongside experienced colleagues.

It will, however, spend more time on topics such as: digital policing, problem solving, safeguarding, and identifying vulnerability and risk, to ensure you have the tools and knowledge to excel as a PCSO.

The course will consist of:

Phase 1: Operational learning I (8 weeks) – full-time at Police Headquarters in Lewes

Phase 1: Tutoring I (2 weeks) – out in the community supported by a tutor

Compulsory annual leave (1 week)

Phase 2: Operational Learning II (4 weeks) - further learning modules and assessment at Police Headquarters in Lewes

Phase 2: Tutoring II (Up to 10 weeks) – out in the community supported by a tutor after which Independent Patrol Status (IPS) will be awarded

Upon achieving IPS, you will continue to build up your portfolio of evidence required to complete the qualification and apprenticeship.

The apprenticeship cannot be completed before 12 months – this is the minimum amount of time for any apprenticeship. But you may complete your Level 4 qualification over a shorter period providing you can demonstrate the correct knowledge and skills and have submitted the required evidence. 

The final assessment involves:

  • A professional discussion, based around your work-based activities 
  • A presentation relating to a problem-solving activity in the community 

How do I apply?

So you want to join us as a PCSO.

We have recently had an intake of PCSOs but we expect to be recruiting again later this year.

The application process has several stages and can take up to five months from when you first apply to arriving in the force.

The stages are as follows:

  • Online application form
  • Online verbal reasoning test
  • Interview
  • Pre-employment checks
    • Fitness test
    • Medical questionnaire and vetting form
    • Biometric vetting – fingerprints, DNA and hair testing


If you pass all four stages the recruitment team will contact you to discuss and agree your potential start date based on your availability and the next available space on a training course.  

We are committed to promoting equality and diversity within the force and one of the ways we are seeking to increase representation is via a bespoke recruitment mentoring scheme for those identifying as black, Asian and minority ethnic. To find out more email joinus@sussex.pnn.police.uk

Further guidance for applicants can be found here.

If you have questions about the recruitment process please email recruitment@sussex.pnn.police.uk