Resume

Correctional Officer Resume Example & Writing Guide

Use this Correctional Officer resume example and guide to improve your career and write a powerful resume that will separate you from the competition.

Correctional officers are the folks who make sure that prisons, jails, and other detention facilities run smoothly. They’re responsible for the safety and well-being of inmates and staff alike, so they need to be calm under pressure and able to think on their feet.

Correctional officers are often tasked with maintaining order in highly stressful environments where violence and drug use are common. They also have to follow strict rules and regulations when interacting with inmates, which means they need to be highly disciplined and follow directions carefully.

If you’re looking for a job where your hard work will be appreciated, correctional officer might be the perfect role for you. Here are tips and an example to help you write a correctional officer resume that hiring managers will love.

Jennifer Thomas
Phoenix, AZ | (123) 456-7891 | [email protected]
Summary

Dedicated correctional officer with eight years of experience providing security and maintaining order in a secure facility. Proven ability to handle volatile and challenging situations while maintaining a positive relationship with inmates. Seeking to leverage skills and experience in a new role that will allow me to make a difference in the lives of others.

Education
Arizona State University Jun '10
B.S. in Criminal Justice Administration
Experience
Company A, Correctional Officer Jan '17 – Current
  • Assisted in the supervision of inmates and assisted with daily operations, facility maintenance, and emergency response.
  • Monitored inmate movement within assigned areas to ensure safety and security of staff, inmates, visitors, and property.
  • Maintained control over inmate population during movement between facilities or programs as well as during emergencies such as fires or riots.
  • Conducted searches for contraband including cell shakedowns when necessary to maintain a safe environment for all involved.
  • Provided support to other officers by performing routine tasks that allowed them to focus on their core responsibilities.
Company B, Correctional Officer Jan '12 – Dec '16
  • Conducted patrols of assigned areas to ensure the safety and security of inmates, staff, visitors and property
  • Supervised inmate labor crews in accordance with state laws and department regulations
  • Maintained a high level of professionalism at all times while interacting with inmates and their families
  • Ensured that each inmate received an appropriate bedding assignment based on size, gender and medical needs
  • Completed required training courses for certification as a correctional officer (including CPR/AED)
Company C, Corrections Officer Jan '09 – Dec '11
  • Monitored and supervised the activities of inmates in a detention facility.
  • Conducted searches of inmates and their living quarters for contraband such as weapons or drugs.
  • Maintained security in the facility by performing rounds and monitoring security cameras.
Certifications
  • Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certification
  • Basic Life Support (BLS) certification
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification
Skills

Industry Knowledge: Security, Control, Restraint, Correction
Technical Skills: Microsoft Office Suite, OSHA, First Aid, CPR, OJT
Soft Skills: Leadership, Communication, Teamwork, Problem Solving, Computers, Critical Thinking, Time Management

How to Write a Correctional Officer Resume

Here’s how to write a correctional officer resume of your own.

Write Compelling Bullet Points

Bullet points are the most important part of your resume because they’re the first thing recruiters will see. And since they’re so important, it’s crucial that you use them to your advantage.

The best way to do that is to use them to describe your experience and qualifications. So rather than saying you “provided security for inmates at a correctional facility,” you could say you “provided security for 1,000+ inmates at a maximum security correctional facility, ensuring all inmates remained safe and secure at all times.”

The second bullet point is much stronger because it provides specific details about what you did and the results of your work.

Related: What Is a Correctional Officer? How to Become One

Identify and Include Relevant Keywords

When you apply for a job as a correctional officer, your resume is likely to be scanned by an applicant tracking system (ATS) for certain keywords. The ATS will search for specific terms related to the duties of a correctional officer, like “inmate management” or “crowd control.” If your resume doesn’t include enough of the right keywords, your application might not make it past the initial screening process.

To increase your chances of getting an interview, use this list of common correctional officer keywords as a starting point:

  • Correctional Services
  • Correctional Safety
  • Law Enforcement
  • Correctional Treatment
  • Criminal Justice
  • Emergency Management
  • Crime Prevention
  • Public Safety
  • Firearms Handling
  • Corrections
  • Patrol
  • Security
  • Criminal Investigations
  • Police
  • Criminal Law
  • Physical Security
  • Interrogation
  • Investigation
  • U.S. National Incident Management System (NIMS)
  • Patrol Officer
  • Government
  • Police Work
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Customer Service
  • Teamwork
  • Time Management
  • Risk Assessment
  • Critical Thinking
  • Supervisory Skills
  • Leadership

Related: How Much Does a Correctional Officer Make?

Remember The Basics

As you draft your resume, there are a few basic rules to keep in mind.

Create Scannable Sections

There are a few things you can do to make your resume easier to read. First, try to left-align all of your text and use a standard font throughout. You should also use bullets rather than paragraphs to list your experiences, and keep your bullets to 2 lines or less. Additionally, use bolding and italics to emphasize important information, but avoid using all-caps or too much formatting variation. Finally, try to leave some white space on the page to make the document less overwhelming.

Be Concise

There is no set length for a resume but in general, it is best to keep it concise and to the point. A one page resume is ideal for recent graduates and those with less than five to eight years of professional experience. If you have more experience than that, a two-page resume is appropriate. When trimming down a resume, remove any irrelevant information, filler words and unnecessary details.

Proofread

While it is important to have a well-written and error-free resume, do not plagiarize any of the text from the examples above. By copying and pasting someone else’s work, you run the risk of being caught and potentially losing the chance at the job you’re applying for. Instead, take the time to write your own resume, and make sure to proofread it thoroughly.

Consider Including a Summary

Resume summaries can be a great way to put your past experience and future goals in context. They don’t need to be terribly long—just two or three sentences detailing who you are, what you do, what your best trait or skill is, and what you’re looking to do next. When executed well, summaries can help to paint a fuller picture of what you bring to the table, and can make you stand out from the competition.

If you’re looking to update your resume, consider adding a summary statement. This will give potential employers a snapshot of your skills and experience, and will help to show how your qualifications match up with the role you’re hoping to land.

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