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3.7 out of 5 stars.
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SOUTH WALES POLICE Work-life balance reviews

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United Kingdom78 reviews

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3.2Work-life balance
3.6Pay & benefits

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Not for the faint hearted!

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This job can be extremely challenging and demanding but also supremely rewarding. The emergency calls dealt with range from deeply disturbing, to exhilaratingly exciting to hilarious/ mind-blowing and sometimes all of these within the same hour.There is always someone to refer to for the more complex situations but be prepared to constantly be alert, think on your feet and act immediately with confidence. Negatives - you will be micro managed within an inch of your life. On a 10 hour shift, you're entitled to a 45 min mealbreak and a couple of very quick toilet breaks. It is very full on with no downtime (except maybe towards the end of a busy nightshift). It can be very draining.Positives- there is no feeling like playing your part in saving someone's life or assisting your caller whilst they are experiencing the very worst moments of their lives. It can give you an enormous buzz and feeling of satisfaction. N.B being a radio dispatcher is unbearable at the moment. The volume of incidents you are expected to deal with is impossible for even the most experienced member of staff. If things go wrong, the results can be catastrophic for both members of the public and the dispatcher. The Organisation spout all the right platitudes but if things go wrong, expect to be in the firing line.
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Not what it was

I did 16 years in the job and to start with I loved it and in the end I hated it. The culture isn't for me and I was getting worried and concerned by the age of the people coming through.
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Based on 32 survey responses
What people like
  • Support from manager
  • Ability to meet personal goals
  • Ability to learn new things
Areas for improvement
  • General feeling of work happiness
  • Time and location flexibility
  • Overall satisfaction

Interesting work but stressful

What is the best part of working at the company?Job Security. Nice friendly colleaguesWhat is the most stressful part about working at the company?To much work not enough staff to do itWhat is the work environment and culture like at the company?Okay. Good work environment. Friendly people What is a typical day like for you at the company?Stressful. To much work. Not paid enough
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Not for everyone.

You will be based at 1 of the 4 custody suites, each has its own pro's and cons. Will be required to cover where needed. Staffing levels is a big issue, especially with sickness....stress.Need to be able to deal with detainees who can be very challenging. Mixed bag of compliant detainees and uncooperative ones. It can be very stressful, constant flow of detainees, banging cell doors, constant abuse and having to process (fingerprint, photo) them. There are days where you get plenty of downtime so enjoy those moments, you deserve it!Pay is good now they finally realised the work custody carry out. Shift work 4 on 4 off, there are staff with flexible working in place to suit there needs. Colleagues are good, can't fault them. Just senior management can push you to much. If something goes wrong, even if it's out of your hands, you're made to feel guilty.No career development, no progression as a cdo and will be so lucky if you're able to go on a course.It's not for everyone, it's a secure job. After a couple months you will get into the flow of things and have support from colleagues.
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Quite stressful and long hours

Quite stressful and do not feel appreciated on times. Shifts can he hard when you have a family and hours are long. The feeling of not feeling appreciated can wear you down and make you feel quite anxious on times. On times though it can be rewarding when you have helped a member of the public and made them feel that bit safer.
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Stressful but rewarding

Officers are under a lot of pressure, have high workloads and constantly being dragged from pillar to post. Management are on your case all the time and there is a culture of shouty emails and telling off for falling behind (which is inevitable given the workload). The people in the organisation are incredible, and a credit to Policing.Uniform and kit is hard to come by, but of decent quality. Vehicles are of reasonable condition and fit for purpose. Double crewing policy is in place so safer and more sociable than some other forces.


Great people. Occasional satisfaction from the work completed.


Antisocial working hours, no work life balance, Management can be a bit oppressive (above inspector level), not enough officers, and dealing with utter grief every day
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No two days the same

Over thirty years things are bound to change some for the better some not but as long as you are willing to adapt and adopt these changes overall an excellent employer.


Job Security


Shift Work
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Good for job security and pension

There is a wide range of jobs you can apply for, including roles that require shift and weekend work which you get paid extra on top of your basic salary. Some roles can be worked from home too.There's also opportunities to gain experience and participate in events which come up from time to time as long as you have your line managers approval.


Job security. Work unsupervised to a certain extent.


Long hours. Unsociable hours
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Dont apply

Stressful, extremely difficult to have any family time. Rest days constantly cancelled for court/training/extra duties. You are 1 person trying be a robot,doing the job of 5 people. You have to love the job&want to help people. You quickly realise you are just a number & can be replaced quickly. No time to investigate anything thoroughly




Long hours, no work/life balance
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Good employer

Good working environment with no discriminatory practices and excellent collaborative working. Given latitude to pursue enquiries and flexible working.
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work life balance

If you intend to join the police force be prepared to work night's, weekends and bank holidays, also be prepared not to go home on time where you have planned a family or social event because


team effort


rest days cancellation
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Could do better

As a police officer you are providing a critical front line role in the prevention and detection of crime. Promoting law and order, reducing the fear of crime amongst communities.


Pay and career progression, for some


Long hours, no work life balance not family friendly
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Family friendly

Good working from home opportunities, flexi etc. however not a place to work if you expect to excel up the ladder. Some of the work is interesting such as building applications that assist with policing.
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Productive and fun workpace

I thoroughly enjoyed my week there spending time in every department, and seeing how the police work behind the scenes. My favorite part about my time there was spending time in the courts.
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Twice the work with half the staff

The job in itself was great. I felt like I was doing something good not just for myself but others. The issue was office politics and cutting corners. Everyone was expected to be a Jack of all trades, master of none. When I joined SWP in the control room, you had to wait for a vacancy..... which meant either waiting for someone to retire or get promoted........ Now they have halved the staff, maybe more and I witnessed so many people being stressed to the point of experienced and brilliant people leave. Rest days were cancelled. Booking holidays a nightmare. Any days where big events were on, you were made to work. The department became so bad, that by the time I left, I hardly new anyone as everyone who started working there only used it as a stepping stone to get into the police.


Relatively good pay


Long hours, High demand, Stressful environment
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Rewarding , interesting , Extremely busy

a somewhat Rewarding and simultaneously thankless job. plenty of opportunity to develop or branch out into other departments. shift working is tough for a work/life, family balance. patience is a given must, you need to be quite resilient and open minded. Bear in mind nobody dials 999 with good news . During one day you can expect to experience every emotion and on times it can be quite upsetting. long hours and shift work would not suit anybody with a busy social schedule. working as a team is paramount . can be very rewarding . The pay does not reflect on the pressurised workload, depending on the department .


brilliant Network opportunities


shift work, weekends
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I thoroughly enjoyed my time within SWP carrying out a job which I loved and thrived on. Every day was a challenge. The team work ethic is amazing and I have met some amazing people whom I will class as best friends for life. Shift work and constant challenges inspired me.




long hours and stress
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Hard stressful job

I personally found it unfriendly, harsh with long hours and constant criticism. Would have excelled at job if workplace culture was less critical and managers were more supportive rather than out to get new people for making mistakes after only 12 weeks training.




Poor support from collegues or managers
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Excellent company to work for but they can’t give me extra hours and this is something I am looking for, although on a part time basis only Thank you
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Rewarding Career

Dealing with members of the public daily Gained A1 Assessor qualification Strong Management Fun, rewarding, fast paced dealing with deaths helping


Helping people in need. Meeting different people from different backgrounds and cultures.


Long hours that impacts on your family.
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Good place to work and find new friends

Long hours and you are under pressure all of the time. Good pay. Have to work longer now to get your pensions. Have to work well into your 60s, which is not too good.


Meet good people


Long hours
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Overall rating

Based on 82 reviews

Ratings by category

3.2 out of 5 stars for Work/Life Balance
3.6 out of 5 stars for Salary/Benefits
3.7 out of 5 stars for Job security/advancement
3.0 out of 5 stars for Management
3.3 out of 5 stars for Culture


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