Open Competition: Probation Officer


The Probation Service is an agency within the Department of Justice. We pay an important role in helping to reduce the level of crime and to increase public safety by working with offenders to help change their behaviour and make good the harm done by crime. We are the lead agency in the assessment and management of offenders in our community.

The Probation Service is holding an open competition for the appointment to the position of Probation Officer.

Closing date: 5pm, 21 November 2023

Application link: 

Please see the information booklet for full details about this competition:


The Role

A Probation Officer may be assigned duties in any of the following areas: Courts and Community, Prisons/Places of Detention, Young Persons Probation or other particular assignments that may arise in the Service.

A Probation Officer can anticipate changes in assignment from time to time during their careers with the Service.

The areas of current strategic priority for the Probation Service that are likely to impact on the work of a Probation Officer include:

  • Ensuring community sanctions remain a viable and relevant disposal for the court;
  • Expanding the range of community sanctions and approaches to offender rehabilitation available to the Courts, the Department of Justice, and other relevant authorities;
  • Developing new ways of working with our criminal justice partners, including greater integration of work practices in the management of offenders;
  • Developing a more victim sensitive approach in our work with offenders as well as further developing restorative justice interventions and services to victims;
  • Engaging with the community in promoting and delivering community sanctions.


Qualifications and Experience


Candidates must, on or before 31 October 2023, have

1. A Qualification at Level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications in Social Science with a social policy component or an equivalent qualification recognised for entry onto one of the Social Work courses approved by CORU, Health and Social Care Professionals Council.

    OR have an entitlement to be registered and obtain registration prior to appointment


2. Have experience in and capacity to demonstrate the following:

  • Interviewing skills
  • Report writing and assessment skills
  • Case management skills, including the ability to meet deadlines
  • Ability to work as part of a team


3. Have knowledge of:

  • The Criminal Justice system
  • Community resources and how these can be mobilised



  • Post qualification work experience in a probation or social work setting
  • Court room skills
  • Knowledge of a range of social work methods of intervention
  • Knowledge of legislation relevant to the work of a Probation Officer
  • Knowledge and understanding of victim related issues
  • Knowledge of offending behaviour interventions and programmes
  • Ability to engage and motivate offenders
  • Knowledge of addictions
  • A clean driving license


For further details about this open competition, please see the information booklet:

We are committed to a policy of equal opportunity and encourage applications under all nine grounds of the Employment Equality Act.