Correctional Officer | DCJ Careers

Correctional Officer

Corrective Services NSW

Corrective Services NSW (CSNSW) provides support to offenders, former inmates, and their families within correctional centres, courts and the community. CSNSW plays an integral part of the Department of Communities and Justice's priority to reduce reoffending and maintain community safety.

Correctional Officers play a positive role in keeping the community safe and help offenders find ways to improve their lives. They supervise inmates being held in correction facilities such as prisons and court cells across New South Wales.

Correctional Officers work within a supportive team environment on a 24/7 rotating roster system where no two shifts are the same. Correctional Officers are required to interact with inmates and ensure the safety and security of the facility by undertaking searches, monitoring behaviours and communicating effectively.

Prior to employment at a correctional facility, Correctional Officers must successfully complete a 10 week full-time Primary Training course that equips officers with program delivery, weapons training and survival training.

“Someone who is a good communicator, that's the most important thing.”

When I joined the job, I intended to be in the job for 12 months just while I was studying, but then fell in love with the job and I'm still here 20 years later.

Each day is different. No two days are the same. You could be in the same post for a month straight, but every day is still different.

I think I was a bit naive coming into it. Thinking that the criminals, like they're really bad people, but they're not as intimidating as you would think. You get to know them, you're hanging around them. They're just like normal people.

Once I came to the correctional centre, it was amazing. I don't think of doing anything else.

Someone who is a good communicator. That's the most important thing.

To be able to, you know, say what you need and what you want from someone. Someone with life experience is really important. A level headed person. You don't have to be, as you can see, six foot five and built like a brick wall. It's more about how you carry yourself and having that confidence.

You definitely got to have a bit of resilience cause it can be a really serious job. Like you can say some confronting things.

The majority of us would be come in and learn from others who are doing the job. If we help each other we can be at home safe.

The people that I work with are like a second family. I know that if I rang one of them, you know, because I needed help they would be there in a drop of a hat.

Team work is massive here. They're your family. It is. Everyone here is a massive family.

There's heaps of opportunities for us, which is really good.

There's so many different path ways we can take.

The opportunities that you get in this department are second to none.

You get so many different opportunities to move and to work at different locations and to experience different things.

Keep an open mind, cause it's not what you think it is when you're coming into work.

It's the best place to work.

Best thing I've ever done.

Working as a Correctional Officer

  • Provide safety, security, welfare and rehabilitation of inmates
  • Conduct daily musters, head checks and ongoing observation of inmates
  • Conduct searches and the safe removal of prohibited contraband
  • Managing inmates’ service requests
  • Ensure safe practices are used to maximise inmate security and duty of care
  • Undertake all custody related administrative duties
  • Maintain a high standard of inmate records from reception, discharge, warrants and bail charges
  • Actively participate and contribute to case management of assigned caseloads
  • Responding to issues from culturally and linguistically diverse inmates/offenders
  • Managing inmates/offenders who vary greatly in attitude, intellectual and physical ability.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People

Corrective Services NSW provides services to various communities across the state, making it important to have a diverse and inclusive workforce that contributes to safer outcomes for our communities.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people make a significant impact to the organisation by improving the way we interact with Indigenous communities and help inform and shape cross-cultural services.

Key Skills

  • Display resilience and courage by staying calm in challenging situations
  • Communicate effectively with others through listening, speaking and writing
  • Take initiative to complete tasks under set timeframes and guidelines
  • Understand the use of computers, office software and communication technology.

Rotating roster

24 hours, 7 days a week rotating shift roster

Casual shifts

Casual shifts from 3-12 hours


10 week fully paid training program including weapons and tactical training


Certificate III in Certificate Practice in the following 12 months

Role Requirements

  • Current Certificate III in Correctional Practice or capacity to complete Certificate III in Correctional Practice in accordance with specified CSNSW timeframes
  • Ability to drive official vehicles and possess an appropriate level of Drivers Licence to meet all job requirements (if required)
  • Preparedness to undertake shift work in a rotating roster, as required.

Pre-Employment Checks

  • National criminal history check including fingerprint checks
  • Contact with offender check
  • Medical and fitness assessment
  • Reference checks (minimum of 2 referees)
  • Conduct and performance checks (for existing public service employees).

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Department Corrective Services NSW