Crime Analyst Job Description, Career as a Crime Analyst, Salary, Employment
Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job
Training/Educational Requirements: Bachelor degree
Median Salary: $33,000 annually
Job Prospects: Good
Crime analysts work in a very statistical role, performing detailed reviews of police data. They review and analyze data from police reports and related police feeds. They provide a detailed analysis on the crimes being committed by geographical area.
Crime analysts are responsible for reviewing daily police data. They take this and apply different analysis programs and methods to understand any trends that are occuring. They look for themes and patterns across local areas to understand where most crimes are being committed and in what capacity.
They work hand-in-hand with law enforcement officials within their precinct and work as a part of the team. The police officers and other law enforcement officials pass along their daily reports to the crime analysts for proper analysis. They use the data to create maps and graphs that spell out the number and types of crimes happening within each specific area.
Crime analysts have a strong mathematical and statistical background, which is utilized in this role. They review and look to past data and trends to draw their conclusions. Their findings are used for law enforcement and political reasons, and help prevent future crimes. This data along with the crime analyst’s findings is helpful in fighting crime and ensuring proper police coverage is provided in a given area. This information is also helpful to families, parents, and citizens of local communities.
Crime analysts are required to have a bachelor’s degree. It is helpful to hold a degree in criminal justice or statistics, but is not required. Any coursework within statistical analysis or a related discipline prepares an individual for becoming a crime analyst. This role is heavily based on statistics and math, so any preparation in an educational background is helpful.
Keeping up with training is also helpful in this position. Understanding how certain programs work or how trends in statistic analysis vary helps keep the skills of a crime analyst sharp. Training with a program such as Geographical Information Systems (GIS) is an important skill. Although additional training is not a requirement, it comes in handy in keeping crime analysts sharp and competitive. Attending workshops helps as they move up the ladder in their career.
How to Get Hired
The best way to get hired is to gain the appropriate degree and have coursework or formal training. This role is usually filled from the outside, but it can be something a law enforcement official works toward, also. It depends on the needs of the police department and the area. This is a role where experience really counts, so it’s important to work within a variety of programs.
As a crime analyst moves on in their career, it is helpful to have documented graphs or maps that show types of analysis work completed. This is helpful in getting hired or moving on within the career of a crime analyst. Some crime analysts move on within their particular geographical location to a different role, while other stick with the same position for the long term.
Job Prospects, Employment Outlook, and Career Development
As long as there is crime, there is a need for crime analysts. This is a specialized job in which the individual must have a strong background and experience within statistics. There is expected to be growth within this field as more geographical areas work to understand the crime that exists, and ultimately try to prevent it.
Even in tough economic times, there is always some level of crime, offering potential job openings for crime analysts. This may seem like a less than desirable trait, but crime analysts work to provide a service towards understanding and prevention. This is good for the crime analysts that wishes to work in this field, and good for the people in their community.
Typically crime analysts work in their own office within a police office or precinct. Since they work hand-in-hand with police officers and law enforcement officials, it is necessary they work closely together and be in constant contact with one another. This creates a sometimes hectic or stressful work environment, but it can also make their job fulfilling in the end.
Since crime analysts work in a detail-oriented role, they must have an office that allows them to get away from the chaos. They interact with law enforcement officials in one area of the building and then retire to their office to perform the actual statistical analysis. In some instances, they travel to meetings to help present their findings and data.
Salary and Benefits
Crime analysts can expect to earn an average salary of $33,000 per year. Based on the experience they bring to the table, as well as the geographical location, the salary can range up to $80,000 a year on the high end. The more experience a crime analyst has, the more they can expect to earn. Standard benefits usually include medical coverage, paid vacation, sick days, and holidays, as well as a retirement account such as a 401(k).
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