If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on [email protected] for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact [email protected]

Thinking of Leaving my job as a Garda

  • 16-05-2023 4:42pm
    Registered Users Posts: 25

    Hi guys. I'm really thinking of leaving my job as a Garda. I don't know which route to go job wise. The paperwork is no joke and it can take over at times. I have great colleagues and everything it's just really not for me. When you're off you're not off. A constant worry about documents forwarded to courts office and cases coming up. Going home and sleep for 3 hours and coming in on your day off to take some chap to court with your eyes falling out of your head. I just don't think the money is worth the effort. A Garda now for a year with 6 years service in the army. Need to find something else

    Post edited by Spear on



  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators, Help & Feedback Category Moderators Posts: 24,826 CMod ✭✭✭✭Spear

    This has nothing to do with Feedback. Moved to a forum that's related to the topic instead.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,786 ✭✭✭DownByTheGarden

    I dont think you are the only one.

    A neighbor of mine is a garda of about 10 years and has recently quit because he hates the job now.

    He wanted to do an evening course in software development but he couldnt do that with the schedule in the job so only did it after he quit. During the day he got a job in a local garden center then, but he thinks he wants to stay at the gardening rather than the software now so he might not bother finishing the course. He wants to move home to the country if he can persuade the wife, who incidentally is a teacher but a total Dub so it will be hard to persuade her to leave Dublin.

    Loads of teachers leaving my kids school last year and even more this year too. Even more leaving the primary school I am told.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,139 ✭✭✭hardybuck

    I think Jim2007 has given some good advice, particularly regarding the need for time and reflection when making important decisions. When you've had a chance to take some time off you might feel more rested and be better able to make a strategic decision rather than a reactive one.

    The AGS is a big employer with presumably a wide variety of roles within it. Perhaps there are other roles you could transfer to now, or work towards in the future, that'd appeal more or give you better work life balance and job satisfaction.

    The other thing to consider is taking a career break or a sabbatical and trying something different before quitting your job. Hanging tough for another year or so (to become eligible for it) could be worth it in the long run.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 3,067 ✭✭✭salonfire

    This does not add up.

    Firstly, you're getting an allowance to compensate for court duty on the days off. Second, there's a proposal for procecuting gardai to be represented by someone else; if not already in place, wait until these changes lessen the court attendances. Thirdly, the new roster allows for a very compressed work week, allowing for plenty of days off. Wait it out until you see how that pans out.

    I agree with Jim2007. The biggest problem with a lot of people is woeful computer skills. People don't know their keyboard shortcuts, their clipboard history, how to select multiple files/folders, don't know how to use Excel macros; making admin a tedious series of mouse clicks. Look into using improving your computer skills or other ways to improve your handle on paperwork.

    Don't get into IT if you find paperwork tedious.

    Is it worth quitting and starting again from the bottom? It'll take a long time to reach the money you're on now, not to mention the lost earnings retraining for a new career. You'd want a very significant increase in salary to make up the lost earnings while retraining. How likely is that to happen? Unless you're very sure of your potential in your chosen new career..

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,263 ✭✭✭Tefral

    It sounds like your Burnt out OP. When you get to that stage, everything becomes a grey window you look out. Is it worth chatting to your Super to tell him how you feel about it? He might be able to swing getting you a change of scenery for a couple of months? I know from friends of mine in the Guards, they are losing good people so will do what they can to hang on to you.

    I know the fella at the top doesnt really give two hoots about ye but surely speaking to your boss about it would help. Id say have some sort of half cooked plan though, as a manager of people myself I know it will come across less like a whinge and more like a person who is stuck if you tell him/her what might make you feel better.

    As an aside, I would think that nearly everyone im speaking to these days are looking for the Grass is Greener oppportunity. They are out there at the moment with Multinationals with the working from home etc. Also, the Guards is a decent paying job, but much like the ESB etc there are better opportunities in the Private sector money wise at the moment.

    Its the old adage though: Never a good job in good times, but an excellent job in bad times.

  • Registered Users Posts: 24 WJ123

    Garda increments increase fairly quickly over your first 5 years, I’m not a Garda myself but currently in the process of changing roles within the public service.

    Have you thought about staying put for now and in a few years transfer to a different public service role, you get to carry your pay point to any other public service job and they’ll even give you one increment extra, you won’t have to enter at the bottom of the pay scale again.

    Just an option for you other than having to retrain and start at the bottom again.

    Heres the finer details on it for ease of reference:

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    Thanks for all the info guys much appreciated 👍 I have a bit of thinking to do to be fair.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    What do you work at if you don't mind me asking? Sounds like a dream

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    That sounds great tbh 👍 what do you do if you don't mind me asking?

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,243 ✭✭✭Juwwi

    What part of the country do you live in OP ?

    Have you considered becoming a taxi driver , in Dublin there's a huge shortage at the moment and they are all making good money ,especially if you put the hours in and it sounds like you are doing shift work hours already .

  • Registered Users Posts: 336 ✭✭NiceFella

    You need to identify the principal reason, of why you want to leave. If it's the paperwork and court days them I think you really need to listen to both Jim2007 and salonfire.

    If you are looking for an office job, then paper work is going to be your bread and butter. So it's not going to get any easier that way. (In fact alot harder probably).

    I work in the private sector and all the stuff Jim laid out is true. I have to hit deadlines, have performance reviews and make decisions that shape the company working on projects that can be difficult to switch off from in the evenings. So if you are looking for a cushy number and also paid well, then you will be looking for a while. Because very few jobs pay very good money that are 'handy'.

    My best advice to you, is improve your attitude first toward the job before making a decision. Then see how you feel about it. Get better at the paperwork ! I work in IT and I've seen some public servants spend whole days on jobs that would take someone with the most basic of computer skills 20mins. Literally. Once you learn, you'll find it so much easier and have huge amounts of extra time. Also be strict with yourself, devote time each day to get it off your plate. If you are a person that keeps saying "ah I'll look at it tomorrow or at the end of the week" etc etc. There's your problem right there. You can build templates for yourself depending what the document you are working on. Always try to improve your process and you'll have loads of time. You'll also start to like those parts of the job, once you get good at them.

    Also, it seems you have no idea what you'd do outside of guards if you left. You need to have an idea about what you enjoy and what you are good at first. So you have two things to really think about.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,088 ✭✭✭SuperBowserWorld

    There are people with varying experience and skills earning large salaries and sitting at home in their pjs. Depending on the job or your ignorance about quality, and your tolerance of tedious work, there can be very little stress. Many of these jobs do not actually produce anything. They are creating products that never ever see the light of day, or reselling insurance or pensions ...

    So, it's understandable why someone would want to leave a job that is babysitting a dysfunctional Irish society with poor pay and respect.

    However, one competent pajamas worker with AI tools will replace N pajamas based workers. So a Gardai might be a better long term bet. And AI can do the desk work for you too.

    If you are considering another career then force yourself to do some night time study or certification in the area to make sure it gels with you. Take time off work to do it etc etc.

    No harm in having a plan b and additional skills.

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    Thanks that's some great advice as is a lot of people's in here. Really appreciate it guys

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    Yes I have thought seriously about doing other courses etc. I have absolutely no problem putting in the work and I am a hard worker. I have a lot to think about. If I do leave I will most likely stay public service as to carry my pension over.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,088 ✭✭✭SuperBowserWorld

    Definitely find some career advisor or coach to guide you along some career path. Sounds like you have time on your side. So plan wisely. And think long term and think big. Don't limit yourself because of fear of failure.

    Communication, leadership, soft skills, etc will get you far. So, don't neglect these. From my personal experience it's easy to dive into the technical aspects of a career, but it can be limiting.

    Even though it might sound over the top, setting up a YouTube channel, regularly posting, blogging, linkedin posts, toastmasters ... etc ... will improve communication skills no end. Just don't post anything that could be held against you.

    Sounds horrible, but it's only about getting over the fear and making all that stuff easy. And so useful for all career options and job applications. And it's only going to cost you time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 3,193 ✭✭✭Eircom_Sucks

    youtuber with 600k subscribers :) so it's paying well

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,325 ✭✭✭Oscar_Madison

    Certainly personal organisational skills important- however if you’re worrying about things when off, that’s not good.

    I think there’s either a skills gap here, or else some major fears around a telling off or disciplinary from senior management- I read the papers so I’m not totally unfamiliar with the current Garda management culture.

    Garda as a career, on paper, is a huge opportunity and if you last till retirement, certain specialisms learned will get you work in the private sector in retirement.

    However, you obviously have to last the pace and get some experience and further qualifications behind you:

    As a first step OP- relax a little- it’s a marathon not a race- your health is far more important

    secondly- speak to someone- just as you’re doing here in virtual land- a problem shared and all of that- but really, do talk and keep talking

    thirdly- with disruption taking place in terms of technologies etc the public sector may well be the best place right now- so don’t be too harsh on your lot and try and count your blessings/ there’s more than you think there

    finally- get a plan around:

    work/life balance

    Future skills ( preferably with the Garda for the moment)

    managing emotions

    If your employer has an EAP service for free- USE IT. That’s what it’s there for

    Best of luck

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,406 ✭✭✭Pompey Magnus

    Unfortunately it seems with the Guards that they are all about modernisation in every aspect except when it comes to how they treat their staff. They now incentivise applicants with college degrees and increased the age range for applicants from 26 to 35 allowing recruits in who had experienced work outside the Guards in the Public and Private sectors. But they still think they can treat their staff like years ago when lads left school after their junior cert and were just glad of having a job. Incredibly they are still bamboozled why guards nowadays are experiencing the reality of the work and quitting in droves and they are struggling to fill places in Templemore.

    It will just get worse too unless either (a) they have a massive rethink of how they are managing their members or (b) the country goes back into a massive economic recession and the job security aspect of the Guards becomes attractive again. My guess is that upper management plan on holding out until option (b) comes around again.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,325 ✭✭✭Oscar_Madison

    Indeed- whilst I get there needs to be discipline over and above what you’d have in a non-security forces role, there appears to be a fear in Garda senior management to “try something”.

    The senior Gardai have a lot to lose “in their minds”- the power, the control- it’s a lot to lose for them as they’re simply acting as their previous bosses acted- they’re about 30 years behind in terms of management style thinking - some areas are probably ok to work in, especially where there’s a great reliance on IT skills to get the work done such as cyber etc- but I’d say even then, there’s a few senior Gardai who can’t refrain from throwing their toys out of their pram from time to time 😀

  • Registered Users Posts: 117 ✭✭lisabiscuit

    Before you give it up entirely could you see if there was any positions coming up in other sections? ASU comes to mind as I believe they have very little in terms of paper work. There are so many different sections- drug unit, scenes of crime, dog unit, sub aqua, CAD, roads policing, that you might find something you'd be interested in more so than the regular unit. Perhaps? Try and remember the reason you joined in the first place. Best of luck with it all anyway. It's awful being in a job your not happy in. Hope it works out for you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    Thanks for this information. Yeah it's only those that are in the job know the story. Cheers for that bud much appreciated wish you all the best

  • Registered Users Posts: 25 prospect1991

    K1 what job did you go into if you don't mind me asking?

  • Advertisement
  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 9,795 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007

    And that is exactly your problem - you only know one type of story.... and not even one of the issues expressed in this thread are specific to the Garda - from pressure to deliver, the work life balance and sadly even suicide are common to all trades or professions you might consider taking up.

    Now I did ACP and all the other stuff we had to do back in the early 80s and I would not do what Garda are asked to do, they are far braver than I ever was. If you had issues with putting your life at risk, dealing with violence, human tragedy etc., there is no doubt that a change of career would be the answer, but you are not, you are concerned with the normal everyday challenges of working life.

    I'd be very very slow in saying leave unless you are very sure that you miss the Garda. Maybe turn the question on it's head and consider what attracted you to the job, what aspects of the job give you satisfaction and if you were to leave where would you find the work satisfaction in another area of life?