What is it Really Like Working for Interpol?

working for interpol

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work for Interpol? Are you even sure what Interpol does?

You may think Interpol is made up of law enforcement agents that bust up rings of international jewels thieves, but that’s just in the movies.

In reality, Interpol is a large, diverse organization that offers interesting career opportunities for people from different backgrounds who possess a wide variety of skills. Interpol might even be the perfect place for you.

What Does Interpol Do? 

Interpol stands for International Criminal Police Organization. Headquartered in Lyon, France with satellite offices around the world, Interpol is a membership-based organization, and the General Secretariat is the body that coordinates all of its policing and administrative activities.

Contrary to popular belief, Interpol does not have the authority to arrest anyone. Although law enforcement agents are part of their workforce, their role is limited to assisting governments of other countries in bringing criminals to justice.

The role of Interpol is to serve as a liaison between the law enforcement agencies of its 196 member countries.

Interpol has extensive data on criminals such as fingerprints, mugshots, DNA samples, passport information, personal documents, and more. The law enforcement agencies of its member countries use this information to move investigations forward.

Each member country does maintain their own crime databases. However, the information they track rarely includes anything that extends beyond that country’s specific borders. That’s why Interpol is so important. They have data that may not exist anywhere else.

What Job Opportunities are at Interpol?

working for interpol

Many people think only police officers and law enforcement agents work at Interpol and that’s simply not true. Interpol has a need for people with all kinds of skills, experiences, and abilities.

It’s almost impossible to describe what your specific day-to-day will look like as an Interpol employee because it greatly depends on your job and where you are assigned. However, we can guarantee that your job will never be boring.

For example, you can be assigned to border security, forensics, investigative support, cybercrime, counterfeiting, or about a dozen other specific areas. You may indicate what area you’d like to be assigned to in your job application. Interpol will take your preference into consideration but will ultimately assign you based on their need.

Within each of those areas, you’ll find that Interpol has openings for analysts, software engineers, database technicians, field agents, trainers, translators, forensic specialists, psychologists, human resource personnel, and the list goes on.

How do I Apply for a Job at Interpol? 

Start by searching through opportunities on their recruitment platform to see what specific jobs are available.

You will be asked to upload your winning resume and cover letter. Your cover letter should specifically state the following:

  • Why you want to join Interpol
  • Why you are interested in the specific position
  • Why you are uniquely qualified for the position

Depending on the job, you may also be asked to upload copies of these documents as well:

  • A Criminal Record Certificate
  • Copies of diplomas or certificates as indicated
  • Proof of past employment (e.g., pay slip, employment contract, letter from previous employer)
  • The names and contact information of two professional references who are not Interpol employees or family members


Can Police Officers Apply for Jobs at Interpol?

working for interpol

Police officers from member countries are integral to Interpol’s day-to-day operations. At any given time, there are 200 to 300 law enforcement officers from member countries working at Interpol for a specific period of time. These are referred to as seconded posts.

Open seconded positions are included on Interpol’s recruitment platform. However, interested officers should apply for the position here. Keep in mind that you’ll need to provide evidence in writing that you have the approval of your home organization or agency to pursue the vacancy.

In addition, it’s your national agency that will continue to pay your salary and handle costs associated with relocating.

Do I Need to Know Multiple Languages to Work at Interpol? 

Interpol has four official languages: English, French, Spanish, and Arabic. You must be fluent in at least one of those languages to be considered for any role. Of course, knowing more than one language is always an asset to an international organization such as Interpol.

A working knowledge of English may be required for certain positions. If that’s the case, then it will be clearly stated in the job posting. 

What Are the Pay and Benefits at Interpol? 

As an employee of Interpol, you’ll typically work 37.5 hours a week, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Some positions may be on a shift schedule and will require that you work public holidays and/or weekends, but that will be clearly spelled out in the job description.

Your salary will depend on your job, pay scale, and experience. You’ll be paid in the currency of the country you’re stationed in. Salary.com lists salary ranges for a number of positions at Interpol.

Interpol will reimburse you for certain expenses if you are relocating from another country. They may pay for travel to the station and reimburse you for costs associated with your search for housing. For short-term assignments, you’ll receive an allowance to cover your travel costs to and from the station.

Full-time employees will receive 30 vacation days per year and an opportunity to participate in their retirement program.

A subsidized private health insurance plan is available to all staff, their spouses, and dependents. Seconded officers, however, are not eligible and must provide proof of medical coverage prior to joining Interpol.

Consider Interpol for Employment

working for interpol

If you have a passion for making the world a safer place and welcome the adventure of living abroad, then you may want to consider a job at Interpol.

Before you start your job search, contact Empire Resume. We’ll make sure you have an outstanding resume and cover letter that will help you land your dream job. 

Maria Gold is a Content Manager/Writer for Empire Resume. She is dedicated to helping educate and motivate people with the latest career articles and job search advice. Her interests range from writing to programming and design. She is also passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology.

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