Probation Officer Job Description Example

By | October 18, 2016
Probation officer job description, duties, tasks, and responsibilities

An essential part of a probation officer’s job is to help criminal convicts avoid getting back into crime.

Probation Officer Job Description Example

What Does a Probation Officer Do?

Probation officers generally oversee the correction/rehabilitation process of criminal offenders and convicts to ensure they comply with legal obligation.

Their job description entails providing counseling services and advice to criminal offenders to aid them in overcoming the tendency to re-offend; they interact with them to identify their weaknesses and then proffer professional recommendation to address challenging issues.

In performing their duties, probation officers usually conduct a personality assessment of offenders to determine their proclivity towards re-offense; they also draw conclusions from their assessment to identify appropriate strategies required for the rehabilitation of offenders and convicts.

In ensuring the proper reintegration of ex-convicts, probation officers monitor the activities of probationers to ensure they adhere to the terms of their release.

As part of their work description, they provide reports which serve as a basis for the release or re-arrest of an offender.

They proffer counseling to substance abuse offenders and ensure they complete their rehabilitation program.

To achieve effective correction, probation officers usually liaise with the family of an offender to create an enabling environment suitable for re-integration.

In fulfilling their role, probation officers supervise the community service activities of offenders to ensure active participation.

They also interact with the victims of a crime to obtain information as regards their apprehension towards the release of a criminal.

Part of the duties of probation officers includes accurate record keeping and documentation of offender information.

They also shoulder the responsibility of testifying as expert witness during trials in a law court.

Probation officers may oversee the probation and rehabilitation of young offenders/juvenile delinquents.

They also guide and supervise the activities of trainee probation officers.

Probation officers visit offenders at their homes, workplace or correctional institution to monitor their activities and progress.

They are mandated to alert appropriate law enforcement agency in event of serious default by a probationer.

The probation officer job typically requires a Bachelor’s degree in psychology, criminal justice or social work although certain employers may demand a Master’s degree in the same.

Some of the qualities required to function effectively on the job include strong communication skills, high emotional tolerance, critical thinking, and good decision-making skills.

Probation Officer Job Description Example

If you are seeking to work as a probation officer, the major duties, tasks, and responsibilities you should expect to carry out are shown in the job description example below:

  • Conduct personality assessment of offenders to determine best strategy for correction/rehabilitation
  • Determine the tendency of re-offense in criminal offenders
  • Provide counseling to offenders, assisting them to overcome the proclivity to recidivate
  • Monitor the activities of ex-convicts to ensure compliance with legal terms of release
  • Produce reports which serve as basis for the release or re-arrest of a probationer
  • Proffer advice and counseling to substance abuse offenders ensuring they complete their rehabilitation program
  • Collaborate with the family of an offender to create an environment suitable for the effective correction and re-integration of a convict
  • Supervise the community service activities of a probationer to ensure active participation and completion
  • Interact with the victims of a crime to note their apprehension towards the proposed release of a convict
  • Maintain accurate record and documentation of client profile/information
  • Serve as expert witnesses to testify during a court hearing
  • Oversee the rehabilitation of young offenders and juvenile delinquents
  • Guide and supervise the activities of trainee probation officers
  • Visit offenders at their homes, workplace, and correctional institutions to keep an eye on their probationary activities.

Probation Officer Resume Preparation

Are you looking to create a probation officer resume? If so, you can apply the listed duties and responsibilities in the above sample job description in completing the work experience section of the resume.

The above functions are among the key responsibilities employers expect from probation officers; therefore having them in your resume says a lot about your being able to do the job effectively without supervisor.

Requirements – Skills, Abilities, and Knowledge – for Probation Officer Role

If you are looking for a probation officer job, here are the required qualities set by most employers that you will need to have to be accepted to work in that role:

  • Education and Training: Probation officers are expected to have a Bachelor’s degree, preferably in the field of psychology, social work, or criminal justice, to be hired. A Master’s degree in the aforementioned disciplines may also be relevant as some employers require it as the minimum qualification. They are also expected to complete a state training program to obtain certification for practice. Usually, they start out as trainees then graduate as professional after a year
  • Communication Skill: Probation officers are able to interact with criminal offenders to identify their challenges and proffer recommendations
  • Emotional Tolerance: As one of their qualities, probation officers are efficient in handling the emotional burden associated with the probation officer job
  • Critical Thinking Skill: Probation officers are able to draw conclusions from the assessment of an offender.

Probation Officer Skills for Resume

In the course of preparing a resume for the probation officer job, the above mentioned skills and qualities are vital in completing the skills section of the resume.

Highlighting the above qualities is a necessary step towards gaining the attention of employers as those are the attributes they are expecting in a probation officer they are looking to hire.


Having a good knowledge of the functions and responsibilities of a probation officer is the right thing to do if you are aspiring to work as one soon.

This enables you to know the kind of responsibilities that can be assigned to you if you are hired and to prepare for it.

And if you are an employer looking for good probation officers to hire, the job description template we have provided in this post will be beneficial to you in making one for recruiting and assigning tasks to your employees.

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