How To Become A Detective In 4 Steps (2023)

The Sherlock Holmes books and series have got us right there. Every time we watch a detective series, movies, or read books we imagine being a detective. The life of a detective may not be as happening as Sherlock Holmes but you will get new challenges every day and earn a great deal of money too.

As we have said, many of us dreamt of becoming a detective when we were young but only a few of us wanted to pursue our dream and actually become a detective. Now, becoming a detective is a challenge and you have a long road to go unlike in fiction where a person is born a detective.

If you want to become a detective then you have arrived at the right place. Here we will discuss what it is like to be a detective and how you can become one as well. But first, let’s see what a detective does and what are the skills required by a detective as well.

What Does a Detective Do?

The role of a detective is to investigate a crime scene and solve the cases. Their primary focus is to look for clues and use their techniques and technology to find out more about the case and the related suspects. With evolving technology, the detectives are seen more behind the screen rather than on the field.

There are two major types of detectives that you can find and these are:

  1. Public Detectives – As their name suggests, they would work as enforcement personnel who investigates crime scenes and solve the cases that are handed to them by law. They will receive the salary via the government and would be responsible to the government as well.
  2. Private Detective – Another type of detective is the private type of detective, they are also called private investigators as well. They don’t work alongside the government and don’t follow the procedures by law as the public detectives. They work for private parties and private individuals. They would be engaged in many kinds of cases other than criminal cases, as someone may hire them to know more about their significant other and whether or not they are cheating. Private detectives are also known to offer security services as well.

How much does a detective earn?

The salary of a detective is determined with a lot of factors such as whether they are private or public detectives, in which country they are working, how experienced they are, and what reputation they have got. Salaries of private detectives vary a lot but salaries of public detectives maybe around $55k per year.

Skills Required by a Detective?

There are many skills required to be a detective, some of them are following:

  1. Problem Solving Skills: when the job of a detective is to solve a crime which means they have to have great problem-solving. This would help them to see solutions and clues at a crime scene.
  2. Critical Thinking: a detective must be able to think clearly and rationally so it is important that one has critical thinking if they wish to become a detective.
  3. Communication skills: another one of important skills that they need to have is communication skills as they would need to communicate with suspects, accused, and witnesses.
  4. Ethics: ethical skills are also important for a detective as they will come across many situations where they have to be clear about the rights and wrongs.
  5. Attention and awareness: detectives need to pay high attention to their surroundings as well as be aware of everything that is going on. This would help them to solve the crime and see things that others can’t see.
  6. Other requirements – Some of the other requirements include education, training, certification, and also legal requirements like one has to be a citizen of their country to serve as a detective. There may be an age limit or requirements too, according to your state or country.

Now we are back with the important question. Here we have listed down a few steps that you need to follow to become a detective.

Also check – How to become a lineman / How to become a model

1. Earn a High School Diploma or GED

One of the first things that you need to do is to get a high school diploma or GED. This is a basic education requirement for a detective. Also, they need to have social skills as well as fundamental skills. They should also have scientific and mathematical understanding too.

2. Graduate Police Academy Training

The next step of becoming a detective involves getting police training. This process would include written tests that will test your thinking skills. There would be physical tests as well as interviews. Once you have passed your entrance test, you will go through the training. The curriculum would include self-defense, traffic control, and first aid. The programs usually last for about six months.

3. Build Experience as a Police Officer

To be a detective, first, you would have to have experience as a police officer. You will work 40-hours a week and most of the time through nights, holidays and weekends too. Your duty would include solving crimes, arresting criminals, and ensuring peace in your locality.

Also check – How To Become A Judge In India / How To Be Humble Person

4. Apply for Promotion

After serving as a police officer for about 4-5 years, you can ask for a promotion and upgrade to a detective position. You may have to take additional exams and prove yourself worthy of being a detective. If you pass the exam with flying colors, you would be able to become a public detective. After that, you would need to get a certificate too.


There you would become a detective following the aforementioned steps. Make sure you don’t engage in illegal activities or get addicted to substances such as alcohol or drugs, as they can harm your reputation and may become an obstacle too.

That would be all that we have to offer now. We hope you got everything that you have been looking for.