1. Overview

Joining us on our Detective Career Pathway provides you with a direct route in to a career as a detective constable, without first undertaking a role in uniform policing.

At times it can be a challenging role, but also incredibly rewarding – you'll help make London safer, serve our local communities, and strive to achieve the right outcome for victims and their families.

Covid-19 update

The Met, like many organisations across all sectors, continues to manage through the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. This has had a direct impact on our recruitment of new officers and the recruitment process.

We have taken steps to ensure the safety of our staff, candidates and new joiners at each stage of our selection process and will provide detailed guidance ahead of each phase of recruitment and selection.

What does a detective constable do?

Detective constables and police constables have the same rank and whilst there are a number of similarities, they have different operational roles. Detective constables ultimately deal with serious and complex investigations, uncovering the truth and analysing evidence on cases. This could range from working to safeguard a child or vulnerable adult, pushing a case through the courts to get the right outcome for the victim and their family, all whilst making the communities we serve safer.

You'll work closely with your uniform colleagues and like them, will also need to police London 24/7. As a Detective you could be out making arrests, undertaking search warrants and also responding directly to certain crimes. It's not an office-based role and it's not always what it is portrayed to be in popular media. It’s an interesting and varied career in which you may have to deal with some very tough situations, you will ultimately be making positive changes to the lives of Londoners.

Being a trainee detective constable

As a new recruit on the two-year Detective Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP) you will spend the majority of your time on the frontline, learning alongside experienced officers.

Unlike more traditional qualifications, the DHEP is a vocational course that focuses on practical learning and is specifically tailored for a career in policing ultimately leading to a graduate diploma in Professional Policing Practice. All learning and operational deployments on the Detective pathway are contextualised and relevant to an investigative context.
You will learn how things work in theory so that when you encounter them in real life you will be confident to deal with the situation.

The DHEP Detective programme is delivered in partnership with four London universities:

  • Brunel University London
  • University of West London
  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • University of East London

You will be assigned a place at one of our partner universities based on which Basic Command Unit you are assigned during the onboarding phase; and according to the Met operational requirements.

Throughout your programme, you’ll have continual, positive support from both the Met and your university in achieving the skills and knowledge required to be an effective detective and your graduate diploma in Professional Policing Practice. The support you receive will include progression development coaches, academic personal tutor, detective tutor constables, investigative coaches, operational policing support and much more.