999/101 Contact Handler
We are currently not accepting applications for our Contact Handler roles. We will update this page as soon as any future opportunities become available.
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When the going gets tough, contact handlers are there to help. Whether it’s taking a report of a missing person, responding to a burglary or supporting someone in crisis; our contact handlers play a vital role in helping keep our communities safe, identifying and protecting the most vulnerable and preventing harm.
For many people, you’ll be the first point of contact with the police. You’ll be a calm, reassuring voice in people’s hour of need. Asking the right questions, listening for vital details and recording information.
Being a contact handler is certainly not your typical nine-to five; no two calls are the same. You will deal with emergency 999 calls, non-emergency 101 calls, and Digital 101 which includes online reporting and social media. In return, we promise you a good starting salary, plus an unsocial hours shift allowance, great training experiences, opportunities for progression and the pride that comes from helping others.
Join us and help make a difference, together.
Working in a fast-paced, 24/7 environment, being a contact handler is a demanding role where you need to be patient and comfortable with working under pressure and problem-solving. You’ll be the person who relishes a challenge. Thinking quickly and multi-tasking is imperative.
You’ll find yourself engaging with people of all ages and backgrounds so you’ll need to be able to build rapport quickly, show empathy and communicate clearly at all times. Enquiries can range greatly, including some of the most difficult situations you can think of. You’ll need to find the balance between compassion and not becoming emotionally involved; having the resilience to deal with the rough and the smooth on a daily basis. However, you will always be supported.
Our contact handlers are an integral part of our frontline, supporting all our divisions, as well as specialist departments including Public Protection, Firearms and Counter-Terrorism. You’ll work closely with your police officer and staff colleagues; making a difference, together.
No two calls are ever the same. You could find yourself:
- Obtaining and recording accurate information regarding a live or historic situation.
- Handling large volumes of calls, emails or social media enquires – we receive on average 37,000 calls per month.
- Responding to several emergency situations simultaneously.
- Acting as the main point of contact between the force and the public.
Our contact handlers work a rotating shift pattern on the following schedule: 6 on 4 off, comprising of 2 early shifts followed by 2 late shifts and then 2 night shifts over a 10 week pattern. There is also a training day incorporated once every 10 weeks. The pattern includes anti-social hours including weekends and Bank Holidays.
Upon completion of the full-time training course, we may be able to offer part-time working hours, however these will still need to conform to the shift pattern.
While customer service experience is a bonus, it’s not necessary as, from your first day with us, you will be supported through great training by brilliant teammates. Overall, you’ll simply want to make a difference, together.
Please note that this role attracts a 24 month tenure, therefore while you can apply for other roles within the force you will not be able to start your new role until the tenure has expired.
To apply for the role you will need to meet our eligibility criteria:
- Aged 18 years or over (on the day you submit your application).
- 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 or other relevant organisations.
- Not have served a prison sentence.
- Ability to commit to a shift pattern which covers a 24/7 period.
When you join Surrey Police, you can expect a career with variety, diversity, challenges, rewards and great learning experiences. This is a vital role which matters to the public, but it also matters to us. As such, we will give you:
- A starting salary of at £22,954 plus an unsocial shift allowance in the region of £4,458 per year.
- 180 hours per year annual leave, rising to 209 hours depending on your length of service.
- Great development experiences that will support future career opportunities and progression.
- A competitive benefits package including pension, flexible benefits, employee assistance programme for advice and counselling, access to discounts / savings / cash-back rewards.
- Progressive approach to flexible working, enhanced maternity and paternity leave and potential for a career break (after two years’ service).
- Opportunities to join various support networks, staff associations and sports clubs.
Read more about what you can expect from us as an employer.
The initial training course is 7 weeks classroom based training. During this time students undertake a number of IT courses, receive a range of inputs for instance Law and Public Protection and finally a Practical Application Course where there is the opportunity to take calls with the support and guidance of an experienced coach. Following on from this rotas are assigned and you will begin working the shift pattern still with the guidance of an experienced coach for around 4 months.
Upon completing the training you will work across both 101 and 999 within our contact centre based at Surrey Police Headquarters in Guildford.
Starting your career in our contact centre will provide you with a wide range of skills and experiences which will enable you to either apply to progress within the contact centre – there is the opportunity to become a coach, or to receive additional training on certain topics to act as a point of contact to other team members.
So you want to join us as a contact handler.
The application process consists of five stages and it’s important to note that because of this, the average time from application to appointment is six months. Only by adopting this stringent approach can we ensure we select people who will make great contact handlers.
Stage one - online application form: this is where we check your personal details and that all eligibility criteria have been met.
If your application has been successfully submitted you will receive an email to your registered email address along with your candidate ID. If you have submitted an application but have not received a notification please first check your Spam/Junk folder before emailing firstname.lastname@example.org providing your full name, telephone number and the date you submitted your application.
Stage two – we will send you a situational judgement test giving you the opportunity to demonstrate your decision making skills using your own initiative.This test is sent to you via email and once it is completed you will be able to return it to us for review
Stage three – On successful completion of the exercise we will invite you to an interview which may be conducted via a zoom meeting. This interview will be based upon the competency and values of the role
Stage four – You will be invited to complete 2 further on line assessments where you will complete a variety of tasks in an online timed exercise - in order to complete the tasks you will required to be able to record information quickly and accurately whist navigating a mock computer system
Stage five - pre-employment checks: these consist of a medical questionnaire including psychological screening, vetting and references.