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Environmental Health Officer Profile


This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as an Environmental Health Officer. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as an Environmental Health Officer
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Environmental Health Officer Work Information

Finding Suitable Work

This website features a volume of Job vacancies advertised on behalf of a number of different employers and specialist recruiters that post vacancies on a regular basis so you can start your search for work right here:-

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Working Duties Expected

Environmental health officers protect people who live or work in their area from environmental hazards. The wide range of duties fall into four closely linked areas: food control; health and safety at work; housing and pollution; environmental protection.

Environmental health officers are likely to undertake the following duties:

  • inspecting a wide range of premises and advising on hygiene and safety issues
  • following up complaints and investigating outbreaks of food poisoning or infectious diseases
  • investigating accidents
  • monitoring standards and taking enforcement action
  • collecting samples for laboratory testing
  • giving talks to small or large groups of people
  • giving evidence in cases which come to court
  • keeping records and writing reports.

Hours and Environment

Environmental health officers work a 37 to 39 hour week and may be required to cover occasional weekend and night duties. It may be possible to work flexitime or job share. Part-time work may be available.

They are likely to be office-based but spend much of their time outside their office. They may have to visit unpleasant, dirty places and wear protective clothing. A driving licence is needed to visit different premises and sites.

Skills and Interests

To be an environmental health officer you should:

  • be able to solve problems
  • be able to approach fact gathering in a careful and meticulous manner
  • be approachable, tactful, persuasive and broad minded
  • be able to work and communicate with people from a wide range of backgrounds
  • have good negotiating skills
  • be able to apply scientific and technical understanding
  • be self confident
  • be able to cope with squeamish situations and be fairly fit and agile.


Environmental health officers must complete a Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) accredited BSc (Hons) or MSc degree in Environmental Health. Entry to the postgraduate MSc requires a first degree in a science subject. Minimum entry requirements for a relevant degree are:

England and Wales: five GCSE (A-C)/S grades (1-3) with two A levels/three H grades or equivalent. Subjects must include maths, English and science, with a science A level/H grade
Scotland: four H grades/three A levels (or equivalent), including maths, chemistry, biology or physics passed at B level, with English at H grade/A level or S grade/GCSE.
Vocational A level/GSVQ Level III in Science with Merit pass may be acceptable - check with universities.

There is a list of all the universities that run the Environmental Health degree on the Local Government Careers website listed in Further Information.

For details of qualification equivalents see:
Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (England, Wales and Northern Ireland)
Scottish Qualifications Authority
An Access to Higher Education qualification may also be accepted for entry to certain courses. If experienced in a related field, you may be able to gain recognition of skills through Accredited Prior Learning (APL). Please check with colleges or universities for exact entry requirements.

There are no age restrictions on entry to this occupation. Older entrants are often preferred because they have a mature approach to problem solving and working with people.

Those who have worked in scientific or technical environments may have an advantage. Those who have worked in customer care or advice-giving roles are also valued.


England and Wales: entrants are usually part-sponsored by local authorities. Before qualifying as an environmental health officer, graduates must complete professional examinations and complete a logbook of practical training accompanied by a portfolio of evidence.

It is possible to The postgraduate MSc is open to graduates in science subjects. Courses include practical training with a local authority. Up to half of the training, however, can be completed with a relevant private sector organisation. In some circumstances practical training can be completed after graduation.

Scotland: candidates take an Honours BSc degree course in Environmental Health at the University of Strathclyde.

In addition to the degree, trainee environmental health officers require 48 weeks'' practical training with a local authority, supervised by the Royal Environmental Health Institute of Scotland (REHIS). This training can be undertaken during university vacations or after graduation. On completion of the degree course and supervised training, candidates take the REHIS diploma examination, which qualifies them as an environmental health officer.


Environmental health officers mainly work for local government. Employment can also be found with hotel, catering and retail companies and food manufacturers.

There is intense competition for trainee posts.

There is a clear promotion path into management within local government. It is possible to obtain further qualifications and specialise. It may be possible to work as a consultant advising small companies and organisations.

Annual Income

These figures are intended as a guideline only.

Newly qualified environmental health officers earn between £17,000 and £23,000.
Experienced managers earn around £25,000, and sometimes in excess of £40,000.

Further information

Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
Chadwick Court
15 Hatfields
Tel: 020 7928 6006

LGcareers *
Layden House
76-86 Turnmill Street
Tel: 020 7296 6503

Royal Environmental Health Institute of Scotland
3 Manor Place
Tel: 0131 225 6999

National Training Organisations (NTOs) ceased to be recognised by the government on 31 March 2002. However, some are continuing to operate in their respective fields. Please contact individual NTOs with queries regarding their current status.

The Secretary of State for Education and Skills is licensing new Sector Skills Councils - charged with boosting skills and productivity in business sectors. For information about Sector Skills Councils, their roles and responsibilities, please visit the Sector Skills Development Agency website:

Other Useful Environmental Health Officer Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Environmental Health Officer job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Environmental Health Officer Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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