Probation Officer Profession

Probation Officer Profession

Probation Officer Profession

A Probation officer usually requires a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, social work or any related field to get employment. However, most employers will have their candidates taken through drug test, criminal record check and competency tests. Another requirement for the practice is a valid driver’s license. The minimum age for the applicant is normally supposed to be 21 years. This article will summarize some of the key statistics for the occupation as a probation officer

Probation officers are supposed to have skills and experiences in dealing with suspects and culprits. Such skills vary. It includes skills and experiences in pretrial services, criminal investigations, probation, corrections, substance abuse treatment or counseling. Those who might wish to advance might seek skills in supervisory or in criminal justice or psychology

Important skills needed in the profession include communication skills, critical thinking skills, decision making, emotional stability and organizational skills. Communication skills. Enable probation officers to be in a position to effectively interact with different people. This might include treatment providers, lawyers, probationers and their family members, judges, and law enforcement teams.

Critical-thinking skills on the other hand is required to enable them assess the needs of the probationers before determining the solution to their problems (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). Decision-making skills makes Probation officers to think of any possible consequences of their actions. It also enables them to choose the kind of actions to pick when a problem arises. Emotional stability lets the officers cope with the hostile environment in their daily activities. Organizational skills are needed to help Probation manage multiple cases at the same time successfully.


On the job outlook, employment as a probation officer is projected to grow by 4 percent from 2016 to 2024 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). This is of course slower than other occupations.

Employment growth depends on the amount the government sets aside for this occupation. However, demand could rise since probation is seen as an economically viable alternative to incarceration in some cases.

The salary a probation officer receives ranges from $32,900annually as per research done in May 2015 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). More than 50% of the officers in this field earned more than this amount. The median amount was determined to be $49,360 while the highest paid officers received more than $86,140 annually. There are those who work overtime since the job is very demanding. This group therefore, ends up getting a much higher pay.

During my research I found out that I had many of the skills needed. However, I need to work on some skills such as organization skills. This skill will enable me plan better for a tight schedule that awaits me. I will learn the skills through observation and research.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, (2016). Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition. Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists. web