CareerGPS

Private Detectives and Investigators
Summary Occupational Forecast Data for Private Detectives and Investigators
Employment Employment Change Average Annual Job Openings Wage & Training Levels
2018 2023 Numerical Percent New Jobs Replacement Jobs Total Median Hourly Median Annual Training Levels
683 733 50 7.37% 10 67 77 $24.98 $51,951 High school diploma or equivalent
Description: Detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.
Staffing Pattern Data Forecast Data Source: EMSI (2nd Quarter 2018)

Occupation Details

The information in this section represents occupational characteristics included in O*NET which defines key features of an occupation as a standardized, measurable set of variables called "descriptors". These distinguishing characteristics of an occupation are described in greater detail in the O*NET Content Model. All items are listed in descending order of importance.

  • Write reports and case summaries to document investigations.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Testify at hearings and court trials to present evidence.
  • Question persons to obtain evidence for cases of divorce, child custody, or missing persons, or information about individuals' character or financial status.
  • 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.

Knowledge

87%
English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
82%
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.
81%
Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
72%
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.
70%
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.
64%
Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
57%
Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
55%
Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
54%
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.
50%
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.
50%
Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

Skills

72%
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.
69%
Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
69%
Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
65%
Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
65%
Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
62%
Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
62%
Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
60%
Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
56%
Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
53%
Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
53%
Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
50%
Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
50%
Persuasion - Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
50%
Negotiation - Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
50%
Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.

Abilities

78%
Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
78%
Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
72%
Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
72%
Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
69%
Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
69%
Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
66%
Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
66%
Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
66%
Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
66%
Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
62%
Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
56%
Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
53%
Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
53%
Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

Work Activities

83%
Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
82%
Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
81%
Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
76%
Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
75%
Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
74%
Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
74%
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
69%
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
66%
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
65%
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
63%
Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
61%
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
60%
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
59%
Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
58%
Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
56%
Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
55%
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
53%
Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
51%
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
50%
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
Title Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed
Overall 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.
Job 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.
Job Zone Examples These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, interviewers, and insurance sales agents.
Education Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Interests

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.
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 outsi
Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Work Styles

Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.

Work Values

Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.