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If you’re looking for a high-quality job as a correctional officer, a good resume is one of the best assets you can possess. A well-written resume will show recruiters that you have the skills, experience, and talents to make it in a demanding law-enforcement role. Keep reading to learn how you can create your best resume ever.
Correctional officers are law enforcement professionals that provide security and supervision in jails and prisons. They are responsible for overseeing the daily activities of inmates, processing visitors, inducting new inmates, checking for contraband, and maintaining order. Some correctional officers may also provide medical care or take care of administrative and documentation tasks.
Whether or not you’ve written a resume before, the process can seem daunting and a little annoying. If you’re struggling to get started or get noticed, it might be useful to have a little help, which is what we’ll provide in this article.
First, we’ll give you a few helpful tips that you can use to organize your resume and show off your credentials. When it comes to getting noticed, your style and formatting are almost as important as your experience. Next, we’ll provide an example of a well-written correctional officer resume that you can use to write your own. With a little guidance, you’ll have a fantastic resume in no time.
Here are a few steps that you can take to create an excellent resume for your upcoming applications:
Before you type even a single letter of your resume, it's important to do some in-depth research. Look into the institution you’re applying to and review all job listings for keywords that you can include in your piece.
Once that is ready, you’ll want to include a short paragraph that describes the duties you performed on a regular basis for each job you have held. After that, add a bulleted list of significant one-time achievements, with metrics whenever possible.
Before you submit your documents, take a look at other resumes for similar positions (like the one below). Doing this allows you to check your formatting and ensure that you’ve included all the valuable information a recruiter might need.
At the top of your resume, be sure to include a professional summary. This is a good place to introduce yourself and feature your key accomplishments in a place where the recruiter will see them.
As a correctional officer, you have a range of specialized skills that most people don’t have. When writing your resume, it’s important to feature these in a visible place. This will show recruiters that you have the chops to excel in your new position. Here are some of the most important skills that you can list in your skills section:
Conflict resolution and de-escalation
Reporting and documentation
Interviewing and interrogation
Emergency medical response
Team-focused, solutions-oriented law enforcement professional with more than 15 years’ experience security, criminal justice, and correctional facility settings. Motivational leader with proven success in training, coaching, mentoring, and supervising personnel. Proficient with .45 caliber, 9 mm, and 40 mm guns as well as Shotgun, AR-14, M-4, M-16, Intoxilyzer 8000, TASER® X26, and K Band Radar.
Consistent track record of improving public safety and security by developing and implementing effective new law enforcement programs. History of cultivating and strengthening community relations through organization of crime prevention initiatives as well as public speaking and educational opportunities.
Employment history example
Correctional Officer at CENTRAL VIRGINIA CORRECTIONAL UNIT, Chesterfield, VA
2015 - Present
Led the transportation of inmates outside the facility to attend meetings with lawyers, court appearances, medical appointments, work sites, and transportation to other facilities. Oversaw facility access by allowing the opening and closing of the gates in restricted areas and through inspections of badges, passes, and packages/persons; completed perimeter security patrols. Searched cells, common living areas, and inmates for contraband and other unapproved items. Maintained logs and key inventories.
Monitored inmates and proactively addressed unusual or improper behavior, aggression, and conflict.
Documented and reported daily activities and observations through confidential, incident, disciplinary, and special observation reports.
Correctional Officer at TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, Gatesville, TX
2004 - 2015
Provided custody and security over facility inmates, by completing observations, searches, and when necessary, restraining/securing. Transferred/transported inmates. Read, reviewed, and applied special instructions including health maintenance directions in inmate files. Prepared reports and updated records. Maintained weapons safety; secured inmate property and returned upon release from custody. Issued linens, clothing, toiletries, writing materials, mail, and cleaning supplies.
Served as an emergency first-responder to calls for help and facility searches; authorized to administer first aid at emergency sites.
Modeled exemplar compliance with facility protocol and regulations.
Trained and authorized for specialized inmate control actions including force and deadly force, the use of chemical agents, and weapons.
B.S. in Administrative Justice at University of Maine at August
A.S. in Criminal Justice at University of Maine at Augusta
Team Building and Leadership
Crime Scene Investigation
Evidence Collection and Preservation
Interviewing and Interrogation
Domestic Violence Programs
Emergency Medical Response
Local Community Partnerships
Patrick is a Nashville-based writer and editor who loves a good turn of phrase. He has worked for a variety of clients but has a special interest in career services, travel, and the arts. When not writing, Patrick is an avid musician who enjoys exploring the sights and sounds of Music City.