For those interested in pursuing police officer jobs, in this article we’ll take a closer look at police officer salary figures, as well as the job growth outlook for this career. It is always a great idea to figure out how much money you can make along with the future demand expected in regards to careers you are thinking about pursuing before actually pursuing those careers. This information can help you to decide if the career is “worth” pursuing and how long it could potentially take you to pay back students loans based on the pay you will be earning once you land a job.
Employment for police officers and detectives combined is expected to grow around 7% between the years of 2010 to 2020. In comparison to all other jobs occupations across the Unites States this is roughly half of what is expected; as the total growth for all occupations across the United States is expected to be around 14%. Although demand for new officers remains high, tight budgets and budget cuts will mean less jobs; and therefore as a result there will be higher competition amongst those competing for these job openings.
Generally the best areas to find work will be at the local levels where salaries are lower, which results in higher turnover rates, leading to more job openings. Jobs at the state federal level will be more competitive than ever, because these jobs offer higher pay. Applicants with the highest levels of experience will be the most desired candidates; being bilingual, having a 4 year bachelors degree along with experience could be the deciding factors.
Government spending determines the amount of new hires that will be brought on when it comes to police officer work. With this being said the number of jobs available can vary from year to year and from place to place depending on government budgets.
Police Officer Salary Figures
According to the Bureau of Labor Statics detective and police officer salaries were roughly $55k annually in May of 2010. The lowest 10% of those working in this field earned $32k annually; while the top 10% earned more than $88k.
Other sources estimate the median police officer salary to be around $50k annually as of April, 2012.
The standard work week is 40 hours, but it is not uncommon for police officers to work overtime; and they are paid overtime rates for these hours. Police officers work in shifts around the clock, because cities need to be supervised 24 hours a day. With this being said it is not unusual for officers to have to work early mornings, late nights, weekend and holidays.
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