Correctional Officer Resume Examples and Templates for 2023

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment for correctional officers will decline 7% between 2019 and 2029. The number of correctional officer positions will drop from 442,000 to 408,900, or by 33,100 jobs. This reduction is largely due to budget cuts and a predicted decline in prison populations.

With fewer openings for correctional officers, you can expect to face greater competition when applying for positions. One of the best ways to stand out from the crowd is by ensuring you have a strong resume. Below there are downloadable examples of correctional officer resumes for entry-level applicants and those with experience. You can also find tips on how to write a stronger resume and match it to a specific job description.

Downloadable Resume Examples


Example #1 Entry-level


Example #2 Mid-career


Example #3 Senior-level

Correctional Officer Resume Examples

Years of Experience
  • Entry-level Entry-level
  • Mid-career Mid-career
  • Senior-level Senior-level

LaShay Dawson
(123) 456-7890 | [email protected] | Moorhead, MN 56561 | LinkedIn


Dedicated Correctional Officer with more than a year of experience overseeing and encouraging positive behavior in young offenders. Recognized for diffusing volatile situations while gaining residents’ respect and compliance. Committed to ensuring the safety of staff members and incarcerated persons.

Key Skills

  • Conflict Resolution
  • Policy Enforcement
  • Rapid Problem-Solving
  • Restraint Techniques
  • Safety & Security
  • Surveillance
  • Youth Counseling

Professional Experience

Trainee – Correctional Officer, Minnesota State Government, Moorhead, MN | March 2022 to Present

  • Help plan, organize, and oversee daily activities of 150+ inmates
  • Supervise and teach offenders in institution’s vegetable garden
  • Use early intervention tactics with disruptive inmates
  • Enforce security procedures, and promptly report any breaches or unusual occurrences
  • Serve as a counselor and mentor for juvenile residents

Security Guard, GardaWorld, Moorhead, MN | August 2020 to February 2022

  • Maintained authoritative presence to help deter criminal activity at assigned sites
  • Praised for responding quickly to suspicious activity and disruptive situations
  • Drafted and reviewed safety reports


Correctional Officer Certificate, Minnesota State Community & Technical College, Moorhead, MN | 2021

Select Coursework:

  • Criminology
  • Law Enforcement Behavioral Science
  • Physical Control Tactics for Corrections

Graduate, Ivan Sand Community School, Elk River, MN | 2020

Gary Moreno
(135) 531-1357 | [email protected] | Tucson, AZ 87654 | LinkedIn


Diligent Correctional Officer with 6+ years of experience supervising inmates and ensuring security at Arizona prison facilities. Use calm, assertive communication style to build respectful relationships with inmates and maintain a low-conflict environment.

Key Skills

  • Conflict De-escalation & Resolution
  • Contraband Detection
  • Prison Health & Safety Protocols
  • Reporting & Documentation
  • Team Collaboration

Professional Experience

Correctional Officer, Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation & Reentry, Tucson, AZ | September 2021 to Present

  • Monitor facility security via regular patrols and video surveillance
  • Inspect cells and communal living areas against strict hygiene and safety standards, reporting any hazards to senior leadership
  • Draft and submit end-of-shift and incident reports to the appropriate department


  • Helped reduce need for forceful intervention by 34%
  • Met 100% of report submission deadlines

Correctional Officer, Pima County Sheriff’s Department Corrections Bureau, Tucson, AZ | March 2017 to September 2021

  • Investigated grievance reports submitted by inmates
  • Used force and restraint devices appropriately in high-risk situations
  • Conducted evacuation drills
  • Helped monitor visitors and check for forbidden items


  • Resolved 87% of inmate grievances within target timeframe and without need for escalation
  • Maintained safety and control during an emergency incident in June 2021
  • Member of team that increased contraband detection rate by 34% in 3 years


Bachelor of Science (BS) in Criminal Justice, The University of Arizona, Tucson | 2017

Sam Klein
(123) 324-4823 | [email protected] | Canon City, CO 12345 | LinkedIn


Alert and decisive Senior Correctional Officer with 15+ years’ experience. Use strong communication skills to effectively manage inmates and liaise with colleagues and wardens. Draw on broad knowledge of criminal psychology and body language to pre-empt dangerous situations and locate contraband and its sources.

Key Skills

  • Conflict De-escalation & Resolution
  • Firearm Safety
  • Hazardous Equipment Storage
  • Security Software
  • Self-Defense & Security Protocols
  • Team Collaboration

Professional Experience

Senior Corrections Officer, Colorado State Penitentiary, Canon City, CO | September 2016 to Present

  • Oversee high-security wing, ensuring 80+ inmates’ safe and orderly movement to and from meals, work, and recreation
  • Write daily reports on prisoner behavior, identify vulnerable individuals, and manage referrals to mental health treatment. Efforts have helped facility see 10% reduction in self-harm incidents
  • Implemented new daily security check that reduced contraband by 25% and inmate violence by 30%

Correctional Officer, Englewood Federal Corrections Institution, Littleton, CO | March 2008 to September 2016

  • Supervised inmates during visits, exercise, and transportation
  • Fingerprinted inmates, verified warrants, and performed regular searches for contraband
  • Monitored prisoner dormitories to de-escalate any conflict or inappropriate activity
  • Helped decrease minor violent incidents by 15%


Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Criminal Psychology, University of Denver, CO | 2008

Common Key Skills and Action Verbs for Correctional Officer Resumes

Most hiring managers use an applicant tracking system (ATS) to analyze applications and select the ones that mention a minimum number of keywords. If your resume doesn’t include the relevant phrases and terms, there’s a good chance it won’t even get into the hands of a hiring manager. Identifying and including these key skills and action verbs in your resume is the best way of getting it in front of a hiring manager’s eyes.

Key Skills and Proficiencies
Conducting patrol duties Control inmates using authorized restraint and physical control procedures
Decision-making Documenting inmate behavior
Locating contraband Maintaining a calm demeanor and building trust
Maintaining order Negotiating with inmates
Physical strength and stamina Problem-solving
Resilience for working long hours and interacting with people who have behavioral disorders Supervising prison visits
Action Verbs
Communicate Comply
Contribute Control
Counsel De-escalate
Develop Discover
Enforce Intervene
Judge Manage
Monitor Negotiate
Oversee Reduce
Safely Supervise

Tips for Writing a Better Correctional Officer Resume

Demonstrate your aptitude at conflict resolution

As a correctional officer, you need to be resilient, calm, and adept at de-escalating conflict. Effective officers get to know the inmates under their charge well enough to spot signs in their body language and speech that indicate a potential argument or fight might happen. If you have the negotiation and people skills or experience to prevent conflict before it becomes a major issue, be sure to mention it in your resume. Include quantifiable examples, such as a reduction in violent incidents.

Example #1


Over 10 years in the role, my ability to resolve conflict before escalation contributed to a 15% decrease in prisoners victimized by violence.


I worked hard to stop prisoners from fighting with each other.

Example #2


I used my exceptional communication skills to develop a strong sense of trust with the inmates under my charge, which led to a 23% increase in the reporting of violent incidents.


I built a good relationship with inmates so they felt able to speak to me about their problems.

Quantify your experience as a correctional officer on your resume

When outlining your experience in your resume, it’s important to include information that’s quantifiable. Vague statements that aren’t backed up by statistics aren’t as convincing as claims that are supported by hard data. Hiring managers generally will be more impressed if they can tell you’re career-minded and goal-oriented enough to assess your own performance based on key performance indicators.

Example #1


The number of serious assaults were reduced by 8% during my tenure at Baker Correctional Institution.


I helped reduce the number of serious assaults while at Baker Correctional Institution.

Example #2


Helped to plan and implement confidential one-on-one weekly counseling sessions with at-risk prisoners, which led to a 7% decline in suicide attempts and actual suicides.


I was kinder to the inmates than other officers, so they felt comfortable talking to me, which might have contributed to a reduction in suicide rates.

How to Align Your Resume With the Job Description

Hiring managers usually have a clear idea of the type of person they’re looking for in a correctional officer. The job description tells you pretty much everything you need to know about what the institution you’re applying to expects from a candidate. To stand out from other applicants and demonstrate your aptitude for the role, mirror the skills and experience detailed in the job description.

If you’re not sure which skills and experience to highlight first, look for any words or phrases that are mentioned more than once, and pay close attention to the skills listed near the top of the list. Compare your resume directly to the job description and include specific examples of how your experience meets the key requirements.

Example Correctional Officer Job Description

Angola, the largest maximum-security prison in the United States, seeks a resilient, highly motivated individual to enforce rules and oversee day-to-day routines within the facility. In addition to custodial duties, candidates must be able to balance compassion and understanding with an authoritative presence to maintain positive working relationships with inmates.


  • Keep count of inmates under your charge and maintain order
  • Conduct patrol duties and contraband searchesand supervise prison visits
  • Patiently manage, control and supervise inmates securely, safely, and lawfully
  • Use negotiation skills to de-escalate potentially dangerous incidents
  • Document inmate behavior and personality
  • Comply with rules and regulations at all times
  • Offer counsel to prisoners and refer them for professional help if required
  • Identify sources of traffic for contraband
  • Employ authorized restraint and physical control procedures where appropriate


  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Basic Correctional Peace Officer Level Two certification preferred
  • Resilience and physical strength for working long hours
  • Ability to maintain a calm demeanor under pressure
  • Interest in psychology preferred
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Exceptional judgment skills

According to the job description, the hiring manager is looking for the following skills and experience:

  • Verbal communication
  • Counseling
  • Problem-solving
  • Decisiveness
  • Resilience
  • Judgment
  • Calm demeanor
  • Compliance
  • Stamina  
  • Physical strength
  • Patience
  • Negotiation skills
  • Alertness

Once you’ve highlighted the keywords in the job description, work them into your resume to demonstrate your suitability for the role:

Correctional Officer Work Experience Example

Correctional Officer, Louisiana State Penitentiary

June 2001 – March 2021

  • Monitored and supervised the safe and secure movement of over 300 inmates in the dining hall, yard, and visitors hall
  • Reduced injuries by 20% between 2001 and 2021 through contraband searches
  • Conducted daily patrols
  • Identified the largest traffic source for contraband and ensured this pipeline was discontinued
  • Documented daily behavior and contributed to personality reports for more than 50 inmates
  • Used good judgement and negotiation skills to de-escalate conflicts and maintain order
  • Supervised prison visits
  • Offered counsel to prisoners, contributing to a 24% reduction in recidivism