Can I Have Another Job When I’m In The Police Force



As a police officer can you have another job at the same time, or can you own or have an interest in a business? How does this impact your application?

The short answer is yes and no! Well, not yet, is probably a better answer!

Here is a quick overview:

  • Not in the first two years
  • Only by application
  • Approval is based on risk assessment and individual circumstances
  • Approval is reviewed regularly

Audio Transcription

I just wanted to discuss with you the impact of having some type of part-time employment or maybe some sort of involvement in a business and how that’s going to impact on your Victoria Police journey. Now obviously as an applicant, it’s almost expected that you’re either studying or you’re working part-time or full time or maybe that you’re involved in some type of business, as an owner or a partner, etc.

Now, of course, as an applicant that’s perfectly fine but when we get to the end of the journey if you’re fortunate enough to be offered a position with Victoria Police, they will generally give you six weeks notice of when you’re going to start, and for someone who’s employed, that’s usually enough time to give notice and finish up with the company that you’re working with.

What if I own a business?

It’s a very different situation though if you’re working for yourself if you’re running a business and you’ve been offered that position. You now have six weeks to somehow no longer be involved in that business, whether you just simply shut the doors and walk away or you try to sell the business.

Now selling a business within six weeks is a big, big challenge and I can think of one member who had a pool cleaning and maintenance business, and he obviously couldn’t start the wheels in motion trying to sell that business until he received a final offer and he was sure that he would be going off to the police force.

That left him with just less than six weeks to sell a business and it was a real challenge. It’s just something that I wanted you to think about in advance and how will I deal with that when the time comes, particularly if you are someone who’s running a business or involved in your own business or self-employed in some way.

Something to seriously think about because you’re going to have to manage that when the time comes. The other thing is for people who might be doing some type of distributorship, maybe you’re involved in some sort of network marketing kind of product or service, that’s the sort of thing that would be considered as a part-time job or part-time business.

You need to give it 100% commitment

You just need to be mindful again about how you’ll deal with that when the time comes. The other thing to keep in mind too that you may not be aware of is that whilst you’re expected to give up that additional work as a recruit at the police academy, you have to continue to not have a part-time job or any kind of business for the next two years.

Now rightfully so, they expect you to be 100 per cent committed to being a cop and that’s important, particularly as a new copper. You’re learning and you’re developing and so on, but after the two years, you will be eligible to apply for permission to have some type of part-time work or start up a part-time business or get involved in some sort of business.

Two main considerations after the initial 2 years

The application will be assessed on its merits, your experience, the type of work, etc. Anything like that will have two main considerations. One is that it won’t impact on your commitment to Victoria Police and your requirements to work for them and secondly, it’ll involve a risk assessment. If there’s any kind of industry that you’re working in or any type of role that you’re performing that could create some type of conflict of interest, then it’s highly, highly unlikely it would be approved.

A typical scenario is where people with a trade, a trade background, plumbers, electricians, carpenters, etc., may come into the police force and a couple of years after graduating they apply for permission to do some part-time trade work on the side and quite often that’s approved. If you were an electrician, and I don’t know anything about the licencing and keeping your certificates current, etc., but plenty of coppers will then go back to doing some trade work as a part-time thing on the side. Now, I mean with nine weeks leave and plenty of shift work you can certainly make it work to your advantage.

Working during your leave

They’re not a fan of you working on your leave because it’s supposed to leave, rest time, recreation and so on, but look, it’s a good opportunity to help supplement the income a little bit, particularly if it’s something that you enjoy doing and you’d like to keep your hand in and maybe maintain qualifications, certificates, etc., licences, depending on your industry.

It’s certainly worth looking at, but be clear though that if your application finishes and you now become an employee of Victoria Police, for the next two years you won’t be able to have any type of employment or be involved in any kind of business.

In closing

So make sure you’re giving that some thought in advance, particularly if you’re involved in running a business you’ll need to deal with that and trying to sell a business in six weeks can be a real challenge.

I hope you found that helpful and I’ll look forward to chatting with you soon.

About the Author

Russell Kempster

Russell Kempster

Russ spent 12 years as a police officer with Victoria Police. The last four years of that time was spent at the Victoria Police Academy as an instructor, where he taught everything from fitness to firearms. He has trained police applicants, as well as recruits undergoing their initial training, experienced serving police officers and was even called on by Victoria Police to help train other would-be police academy instructors.

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