Prison Officer - HMP Thameside

Job Req ID:  276349
Posting Start Date:  8 Feb 2024

Thamesmead, London, GB, SE28 0FJ

Contract Type:  Full Time
Job Advertisement: 

Location: HMP Thameside

Salary: Up to £36,950 per annum effective from 1st April 2023
Type: Permanent.  Full time positions available (average 40 per week, with various shifts). Traditional and 4 day working week shift patterns available.


What’s in it for you?

From 1st April 2023, you will start your training at a starting salary of £32,200 per annum, and at your pace we are committed to progressing you through your training portfolio to reach £36,950 as quickly as possible. Plus overtime paid at time and a half as well as;

  • Opportunity to earn approximately £39,160 including overtime (*Whilst we cannot guarantee overtime will always be available, this figure is based on an average of 4 hours per week)
  • Clear career development pathways for you to transition quickly into operational management positions where your basic pay will rise to £48,200 plus the opportunity to earn overtime on top of this.
  • 4 day working week with flexible shift patterns available.
  • Pension scheme.
  • Health & Wellbeing Benefits.
  • Reward & Recognition scheme.
  • Serco discounts which include cinema, blue light discounts, online shopping discounts, leisure centre memberships and much more.


Is this the right career for you?
This is a unique opportunity to be part of a team at HMP Thameside.  Our Prison Officer community come from a variety of different backgrounds, so prison experience isn’t needed. We’re focused on your transferrable skills and behaviours such as communication, teamwork and the resilience and patience to help people.


As a Prison Officer, you’ll be at the forefront of ensuring the health, safety, and wellbeing of everyone around you. It’s also a job where your contribution really counts, as you work to give prisoners structure within their lives, encourage positive choices, and support them on their journey to rehabilitation. Day to day you’ll be involved in:

  • Supervising prisoners in all aspects of prison wing activity.
  • Overseeing work and education programmes, encouraging prisoners to participate.
  • Operational matters such as prisoner headcounts, cell searching, security, and administrative processes.
  • Managing prisoners who are at risk of self-harm.
  • Our accredited training programme will equip you with new skills and confidence to enable you to build a career with us as a respected Prison Officer. You’ll receive an 8–10-week Initial Training Course (ITC), covering everything from control and restraint to first aid. You’ll also receive the help of our great team, with job shadowing and buddy programmes to support you.


Still not sure this is the role for you? Find out more information here and try our PCO - Virtual Careers Assistant - PCO Careers Assistant


Preparing for your recruitment journey:
As part of our assessment process, you’ll need to pass a Level 2 English and Maths test (GCSE, NVQ or equivalent). You will need to provide full details of your employment and education history for the last 5 years as part of the security screening process for this role. These roles are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.   Your application will be reviewed by one of our Talent Specialists. If you meet the criteria as set out in the advert you will be invited to an interview, where you will take part in a short role play, written exercise, competency based interview & fitness test which consists of:

  • Bleep Test – You will be required to complete 15 metre shuttle runs in time with the bleeps and will last approximately 3 minutes and 40 seconds and will have to reach level 5.4. 
  • Agility Test – Running around set course of cones under a particular time scale. 
  • Shield Hold Test – Holding shield out in front of you at a 45-degree angle for 1 minute 
  • Grip Test - 20KG (on both hands) 


Once you have passed the selection and vetting process, we will invite you to attend an 10-week Initial Training Course (ITC) at the establishment you have been recruited for, and you will be required to have 100% attendance. The ITC will provide high quality training where you will complete a Diploma in Custodial Care and undergo Control and Restraint training. You will also shadow experienced Prison Officers on shift to give you a real taste of life on the job.


The service that we provide to our prisoners is available every day of the year across a 24-hour period, meaning you will have to cover various shift patterns, including days, evenings, weekends, nights, and bank holidays - with an average of 40 hours per week. We will value the importance of work-life balance and on successful completion of your ITC, we’ll consider Flexible Working Requests.


Why Serco?

  • Meaningful and vital work: Prison Officers are key to ensuring the health, safety and wellbeing of prisoners, staff, and visitors in their prisons. More importantly they play a vital role in reducing reoffending rates amongst prisoners, which is key to protecting public finances.
  • A world of opportunity: Our prisons hold a huge amount of variety and opportunity, with Officers being able to progress into Ops Management or into specialist services such as Psychology, Education, Health, or the Animal unit. It’s an ever-evolving career.
  • Great people: Because of our investment in safeguarding and rehabilitation, our prisons are calmer and can be very different to how you might imagine. You’ll also receive all the training and advice you’ll need from your friendly and supportive colleagues.


This role is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and all offers of employment are subject to security clearance checks and approval by the Home Office, and satisfactory employment references.


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 a Disability Confident level 3 employer 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. 


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.