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Details for Private Detectives and Investigators


Description

Detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.

Tasks

  • Apprehend suspects and release them to law enforcement authorities or security personnel.
  • Conduct background investigations of individuals, such as pre-employment checks, to obtain information about an individual's character, financial status or personal history.
  • Conduct private investigations on a paid basis.
  • Confer with establishment officials, security departments, police, or postal officials to identify problems, provide information, and receive instructions.
  • Monitor industrial or commercial properties to enforce conformance to establishment rules, and to protect people or property.
  • Observe and document activities of individuals in order to detect unlawful acts or to obtain evidence for cases, using binoculars and still or video cameras.
  • Obtain and analyze information on suspects, crimes, and disturbances in order to solve cases, to identify criminal activity, and to gather information for court cases.
  • Perform undercover operations such as evaluating the performance and honesty of employees by posing as customers or employees.
  • Question persons to obtain evidence for cases of divorce, child custody, or missing persons, or information about individuals' character or financial status.
  • Search computer databases, credit reports, public records, tax and legal filings, and other resources in order to locate persons or to compile information for investigations.
  • Write reports and case summaries to document investigations.
  • Alert appropriate personnel to suspects' locations.
  • Count cash, and review transactions, sales checks, and register tapes in order to verify amounts and to identify shortages.
  • Expose fraudulent insurance claims or stolen funds.
  • Investigate companies' financial standings or locate funds stolen by embezzlers, using accounting skills.
  • Testify at hearings and court trials to present evidence.
  • Warn troublemakers causing problems on establishment premises, and eject them from premises when necessary.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Enterprising - Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, Training, Experience

  • Education - Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

Knowledge

  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

Skills

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Related Careers

  • Correctional Officers and Jailers
  • Criminal Investigators and Special Agents
  • Fire Inspectors
  • Fire Investigators
  • Immigration and Customs Inspectors
  • Police Detectives
  • Security Guards
  • Transit and Railroad Police
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