Detention Custody Officer

Bedfordshire | Other

Location: Yarls Wood Immigration Centre, MK44 2FQ

Type: Full Time, 40hrs pw (rota/shifts, see advert below)

Salary: £26,375 per annum, rising incrementally to £27,430 (upon successful completion of 6 month probationary period) and £30.068 upon 2 years of service.


Working at Yarls Wood Immigration Centre as a Detention Custody Officer (DCO) for Serco is more than just a job, it's the chance to be a part of something great; join a work family where you are valued and the work you do makes a difference every day.  In addition to immense job satisfaction in a rewarding career, we also offer:

  • £26,375 per annum, rising incrementally to £27,430 (upon successful completion of your probationary period) and £30,068 upon 2 years of service.
  • Full training provided you'll complete a in depth 7-week training course with the opportunity to be mentored by experienced staff, giving you a real taste of life on the job;
  • Free onsite parking; paid breaks and subsidised meals; full uniform provided.
  • Serco benefits including pension match up to 6%, 28 days leave (inclusive of bank holidays)
  • Perks including Blue Light cards and further employee discounts across hundreds of high street shops for fashion, hospitality, attractions, holidays, electronics and gaming supplies and much more
  • Access to career long learning and development opportunities
  • The chance to make a positive difference in a company passionate about diversity and inclusion


At Yarls Wood we offer both job stability & job security, as well as career development pathways for you to transition into operational management roles.  The centre is open 24/7 and you'll cover various shift patterns, but we do operate on a rota basis that allows you the flexibility to enjoy meaningful time off to do the things you love (we typically work on average 12-hour shifts, 4 days per week on a rota basis).


The DCO role is varied, and you'll be at the forefront of ensuring that the arrival process for detainees is as worry-free as possible and ensure they access the support they need throughout their detention. This will include a range of on-site services that you'll help to supervise and promote, including healthcare, welfare, faith and cultural provisions, education and recreation activities.  Central to this is how you communicate with detainees; you'll form supportive and appropriate relationships with detainees throughout their detention.


Detainees come from all walks of life, and we treat them all with fairness and respect. You may experience some challenging situations or unwanted behaviour, but you'll be fully equipped to handle this through the training provided prior to starting your new role.


What do you need to do the role?

Our current DCO's come to us with different work & life experiences, from retail to healthcare, to call centres and taxi drivers; others are ex-military, police, and security services personnel! What you've done before doesn't matter, what matters is that you're committed to making a difference to the lives of others - the rest you will learn during your 9-week training course and through our experienced colleagues.


You'll need be reasonably fit and have a good educational level of English and Maths, as report writing, and numerical abilities are a key part of the role.


Our recruitment process:

  • Completion of online application form
  • A 1hour virtual interview via Microsoft Teams, you'll be assessed against our criteria (competency-based questions, role play, written exercise, and maths assessment); it will also be an opportunity for you to ask questions to get a clear understanding of the role.
  • If successful, you will be required to complete a mandatory 9-week training course. No annual leave can be taken during this period.


What else do I need to know?

  • This role is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, all offers of employment are subject to security clearance checks and approval by the Home Office. 
  • You will be required to obtain Home Office CTC & Enhanced DBS with adult and child barring vetting clearances (which required 5 years of checkable history)


Visit us here to view all of our other roles at Yarls Wood Immigration Centre.


About Serco
At Serco, not only is the nature of the work we do important, everyone has an important role to play, from caring for vulnerable people to managing complex public services.  We are a team of 50,000 people responsible for delivering essential public services around the world in areas including defence, transport, justice, immigration, healthcare and citizen services. We are innovators, committed to redesigning and improving public services for the benefit of everyone.

By joining Serco you will have unlimited access to our Global Employee Networks - SercoInspire (Gender), SercoEmbrace (Multicultural), SercoUnlimited (Disability) and In@Serco (LGBT & Networks). Serco Employee Networks, led by colleagues who are passionate about diversity, inclusion and belonging. 

Please click on the apply button to complete your application. Occasionally we receive a large volume of applications for our roles and when that happens we sometimes bring the closing date forward, so please apply promptly to avoid disappointment. 

At Serco, we see people first and foremost for their performance and potential. We are committed to building a diverse and inclusive organisation that supports the needs of all. As such we will make reasonable adjustments at interview through to employment for our candidates and strongly encourage applications from a diverse candidate pool. We are open to discussions around flexibility and flexible working. We operate a hybrid work structure in many of our business areas. We are proudly Disability Confident Leader employers and holder of the Silver Inclusive Employer Standard. Disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria for the job will be given the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities at an interview.  For help with your application please contact 0345 010 4000.

At Serco we support fair access to employment for those with unspent criminal convictions through the 'Ban the Box' pledge (some may be exempt due to the nature of the role and the security clearance required). Please contact our recruitment team directly on 0345 010 4000 to discuss.

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Contract Type
Expiry Date
31/07/2024 01:15:00
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