Police Rank Structure

Here you will find information on the careers that are available within the UK Police Service.

Rank Structure

When you join the Police service you begin your career as a probationary police constable. You have to complete two years satisfactory Police service before you can be affirmed as a fully fledged Police Constable.

Every police officer in the UK is issued with a warrant number at their date of joining. This warrant number remains with them throughout their career and is visible on their shoulder epaulette up to and including the rank of sergeant.

In order to progress to the rank of Sergeant you require to pass police promotion exams, which test you further on your knowledge regarding Police procedures and law. After passing all the promotion exams you may then be considered for vacancies as they arise. A Sergeant requires to have a good knowledge of the Police service and be an experienced officer.

In order to progress through the senior ranks in the Police service it requires hard work and dedication to the job, often working long hours and continuing training throughout your career.

TYPICAL POLICE RANK STRUCTURE

The ranks within the police service are, in descending order of seniority:
Chief Constable (Most Senior Police Officer)
Deputy Chief Constable
Assistant Chief Constable
Chief Superintendent
Superintendent
Chief Inspector
Inspector
Sergeant
Constable
In the News
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Andre George travelled 70 metres with officer on his bonnet.
IPCC guidance on post-incident procedures seen as making officers look guilty, federation says 16:36, 21st February GMT
Both the PFEW and the NPCC are concerned about the police watchdog's guidance around death or serious injury.
Officers 'must be separated' after death or serious injury incident, new IPCC guidance stipulates 00:02, 21st February GMT
Controversial measure is at odds with the College of Policing APP.
Head of Humberside Police agrees 'to make way for new chief' 15:42, 20th February GMT
PCC had warned that Justine Curran's job was not safe.
PC who lied about crash driver faces dismissal 10:57, 21st February GMT
Nicola King was sentenced over the incident last year.
National armed police force idea shelved 06:00, 21st February GMT
Three forces would have been merged with elements of Home Office constabularies under proposal.
Chief 'hugely concerned' about speculation over Sir Ted Heath inquiry 05:20, 21st February GMT
Chief Constable Mike Veale defended the investigation after recent media reports.
Criminal inquiry launched into forensics firm over data manipulation 11:15, 20th February GMT
Almost 500 cases are being reviewed as part of the investigation amid fears people may have been wrongly convicted.
PC dismissed for sharing porn on duty is ordered out of force for the second time 10:34, 20th February GMT
Officer had already been sacked but appealed the decision and was allowed to return.