Becoming a private investigator in Australia can open up many different job roles and exciting opportunities.

Many doing their Certificate III in Investigative Services have questions about the availability of work after getting licensed. And it’s a good question! After all, who’d want to spend the time and money with no prospects at the end?

As we’ve spoke about before, private investigation in Australia takes on many different forms from corporate/workplace investigations, government investigations, insurance investigations, Workcover matters, fraud and the like, to surveillance. But not much is known about the surveillance field. Why is this so?

Well, the whole point of (covert) surveillance is to …. be covert! These types of private investigators are usually very private, blend in and don’t tell the whole world what they do, or how they do it. There’s pretty good reason for that when you think about it.

Operatives who specialise in surveillance can take on many different tasks. One day they may be following a cheating partner, the next they may be observing someone of a Workcover claim who’s working. They could find themselves spying on workplaces or even gathering evidence of criminal activity to give to the police (like the story attached on illegal tobacco supply). But like any job, not every task is going to be exciting!

And surveillance is not for everyone. Not only does it take technical skills, but a decent amount of tenacity, patience and nous.

At the Professional Investigators College of Australasia (PICA) we can teach you the basic skills of surveillance but the truth is, you’ll need to do the job and get experience to be at the top of your tradecraft. You’ll need to be “burnt” to learn and know what not to do next time. You’ll need to lose a target to become better at follows. Like any profession, the good one’s continue to practice their trade and learn as much as they can.

Online investigation courses can give the theory, but our advice is to seek out more practical training as well. Seek out others in the industry and ask questions, watch videos and find a mentor (if you can). Continue to upskill yourself.

What you will find is that you’ll be in demand. Those in the industry will know you and your work, and you’ll never be without.