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south african police service careers and application form

the SAPS offers careers in various fields. If you join the SAPS you can either become a police official or a civilian employee. Police officials are employed in terms of the South African Police Service Act, 1995 (Act No 68 of 1995). Civilian employees are employed in terms of the Public Service Act, 1994 (Act No 103 of 1994). Most functional Police Officials are directly involved in preventing, combating or investigating crime. The other Police officials and civilian personnel carry out support functions.


Vacant posts in senior management are advertised quarterly and on an ad hoc basis, if and when required. These posts are advertised nationally in the Sunday newspapers (Rapport, Sunday Times and City Press).

Selection procedure

Selection is usually through shortlisting. The Assessment Centre method is used, and consists of individual and group exercises designed to elicit behaviour typically associated with the work of senior managers. Candidates participate while being observed by specially-trained observers (panel members). The exercises are simulations of police specific managerial tasks designed to assess managerial competencies. They include both written material and behaviour simulations. (See the photograph gallery for visual material in this regard.)

Approval of appointments

Recommendations received from various panels are prepared and presented to the national panel for consideration. All recommendations are subject to the consideration and approval of the National Commissioner. Appointments on salary level 13 and above are not effective without the endorsement of the National Commissioner.


Successful candidates are usually provisionally appointed in terms of the Senior Management Service (SMS) regulations, and are required to submit –

  • a performance agreement
  • an employee contract
  • full disclosure of financial interests
  • be subjected to a security clearance.

Confirmation of appointments

Is effective once suitability certificates and certificates of acceptance are received from the relevant province or division, and are confirmed at Head Office. Successful candidates are now provided with appointment letters.

application form

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