Learn: Salary & Benefits
The starting salary for a beginning police officer, as of January 1, 2016, is $48,452 annually with a raise after six months to $53,875.
Some of the other benefits are:
- Pension covered through the Wisconsin Retirement System; contributions made by employer and employee
- Health insurance coverage through five different options (some of these programs are at no cost to the employee)
- Wage, life, and disability insurance plans
- Thirty-seven and one-half (37-1/2) hour work week
- Educational incentive pay plan after forty-two (42) months of continuous service
The educational incentive pay plan is particularly noteworthy. After 42 months of continuous service, your base salary will increase relative to the amount of education attained. For example, an associate's degree will realize a pay increase of 9%; putting your base pay at $64,009. For a bachelor's degree, a pay increase of 18% ($69,294) and for a master's degree a pay increase of 22% ($71,643). The aforementioned base pay does not include briefing time, shift differential or other routine overtime (i.e., court).
What Kind of Training is Provided?
Our Academy usually runs from 8am-4pm, Monday-Friday. The Academy is not residentially based; at the end of the workday, recruits go to their own homes - not a barracks or dormitory. The tone of our Academy endeavors to treat all of our recruits as continuing adult learners. Those ultimately hired will receive extensive training in such areas as law, crisis intervention, firearms, and use of community resources. This initial training lasts four months, and is one of the most comprehensive in the country. It is conducted in Madison under the direct supervision of the Madison Police Department Training Staff. It is not unusual for our newly-hired officers to have widely varying technical and non-technical skills. Our goal is to provide a base of training which builds on each individual's unique body of knowledge and expertise. As a recruit in training, full salary and benefits apply.
*(Note: MPD does not provide an exemption from the pre-service academy for officers interested in lateral employment to our Department. Everyone hired, regardless of certification, must participate in our academy.)
What Happens after Completion of Initial Training?
After the Academy, the new officers undergo four months of Field Training with a veteran mentor. Following the completion of Field Training, officers are then assigned to Patrol Services.
Are There Promotions or Other Jobs within the Department?
New hires are placed on a eighteen month probationary period which commences on the first day of the Academy. Upon graduation, officers are assigned to Patrol Services. Promotional opportunities begin after four years of service. There are also a variety of positions in the Department which officers may apply for laterally after three years of service. Some of these are full-time positions while others develop special expertise to be utilized in specific situations. These include such areas as safety education officers, neighborhood officers, educational resource officers, traffic enforcement safety team, SWAT team and community policing teams.