What Do First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Do?
A first-line supervisor coordinates and oversees activities of jailers and correctional officers. They are the direct supervisor in the work environment ensuring safety protocols and facility policies are met.This type of position is expected to increase by about 4% across the United States. That could mean there will be about 1,800 annual job openings.
First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Skills and Abilities
If you want to be a first-line supervisor of correctional officers, you have to have certain skills, knowledge and abilities. You should have a technical knowledge of law, public safety procedures, administration and psychology. It is important that you are able to monitor the work of yourself and others. You should be able to coordinate multiple people’s activities to ensure a seamless work environment. It is also important that you are able to think critically and solve problems. You should be very socially perceptive and have great communication skills.
First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Duties
You duties will vary depending on the institution that you work for and your level of experience. However, generally you have to:
- Follow relevant laws, regulations, rules and policies while maintaining discipline, security and order in your assigned areas.
- Periodically check, take and receive inmate counts.
- Provide employees with instruction and on the job training.
- Use firearms, chemical agents or other weapons of force to secure, restrain and control offenders.
- Carry any injured offenders or employees to safety, and provide emergency first aid as necessary.
- Respond to emergencies, such as escapes or fights.
- Search inmates and their quarters in order to locate prohibited items.
- Ensure the safety, welfare and discipline of inmates by supervising and directing correctional officers.
- Complete paperwork and records of inmates, procedures and other administrative things.
- Oversee searches, riot control, shakedowns and institutional tours.
These are just a few duties that you may have to do as a first-line supervisor in this type of facility.
First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Tools and Technology
In order to really be successful in this position, you have to know how to use:
- Body Armor
- Metal Detectors
- Database User Interface Software
- Scheduling Software
These tools and technology will help make you more efficient in this position.
Education and Training for First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers
Before you can become a first-line supervisor of correctional officers, you have to have at least a high school diploma and five years of experience. Some institutions may want you to have a non-degree award, Associate’s degree or Bachelor’s degree. You will have to undergo on the job training in order to become familiar with the institution’s policies and procedures. You should take courses similar to:
- Criminal Justice
- Corrections Administration
These courses will give you the technical foundation needed to succeed.
First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Salary
In the United States, the average salary for a first-line supervisor of correctional officers is about $58,000. This salary is affected by your experience and education as well as the institution. With less experience and education you may find yourself in the lower 10% making about $37,100. With more experience and education you may find yourself in the upper 10% making about $93,500.
First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers Jobs by Geography
Your salary is also affected by location. First-line supervisors of correctional officers in New York, California and New Jersey have a higher salary on average than any other states. However, you also have to consider the likelihood of you getting this type of position. You have to look at how many positions there are in a state. For example, Texas, Virginia and California have the most first-line supervisors of correctional officers per capita. That does not, however, mean these states have a lot of open positions. Kentucky, Mississippi and New Mexico are expected to see the highest increase in open positions of this kind. When you think about your future career, you have to consider the impact that geography, education and experience can have on your success.