In this month’s recruiter spotlight, we talked to Sgt. Ernest Loucas. He began his career in law enforcement in 2007 with the Richmond Police Department. After completing his field training program, he had the opportunity to work on several crime suppression projects throughout the city’s south side.
In 2009, he was selected to the police officer training program and worked as an FTO (Field Training Officer) until 2015, when he was promoted to Sergeant. While a patrol officer, he was awarded Crime Prevention Officer of the year for the Southern District in 08, 09 and 2012.
Sgt. Loucas has held many collateral assignments to include, FTO, weaponless defense instructor, TASER instructor, Use of Force Review Board Chairman, Crisis Negotiation team lead and Sr. Peer Support member during his career. He has also been assigned to the Crime Scene Technician program.
Sgt. Loucas remains dedicated to maintaining constructive community relationships in order to identify and address quality of life issues and crime with the City of Richmond. And, in the new role of Personnel and Recruiting supervisor those established relationships assist in drawing the “right” individual to work in law enforcement and for the Richmond Police Department.
What were some of youR biggest challenges?
Some of our challenges were reaching different areas that didn’t necessarily know about us. Areas we normally would have to send someone physically to go down there and recruit. We really weren’t able to track how successful those recruiting trips were. For instance, we could go down to Modesto or Fresno for a recruiting trip and have them fill out an interest card, but then there’s no way to track if that person actually applied. With Epic Recruiting, it’s been much easier to track them from the recruiting website, to a contact form and to an application.
What was it that brought you to epic?
Well actually I took over the training unit and was told to come up with some creative, outside of the box ways to establish the Richmond Police Department as the place to work. We needed a brand and I started doing research, asking around, and Epic Recruiting came up a bunch. I liked what I saw, made some calls and emails. What really attracted me to it was building a brand around the department. This is who we are, what we’re about and “selling it” to people to work here.
How was the planning process with epic?
It was actually really easy! It was one meeting where we talked about which days we’d film and what we’d be highlighting. We also came to the table with some ideas of our own. So Epic made it super easy to plan, and then when they showed up and started filming, we had already prepared for the prior weeks. We got just about everything we needed in the three days of filming.
It's competitive out there... how do you stand out?
Our focus when working with Epic is just showing what we do best compared to the bigger agencies. It was important for us to highlight that because, you know, you could go work at a big agency, but since we’re smaller it’s more of a family feel and we take care of our officers; they’re not just another number.
How does the price compare from traditional recruiting to digital recruiting?
It’s much more affordable to utilize digital recruiting. You know, the traditional way to recruit is to send multiple bodies to a location. Sometimes you’re paying for overtime, travel expenses, overnight stays, and airfare depending on where we go. So this makes it much more cost effective from a centralized location for us to do recruiting and control our overhead.
How was the process of building your brand and this recruiting campaign?
Our team had talked about what we wanted to showcase and highlight in this campaign. We got really good with communicating and partnering with the community and we wanted to show that. We’re a modern agency with lots of training.
Meeting with Epic, we focused on the few points we’re really good at and built the brand around that. Community policing, opportunity for growth and training, and the fact that we empower our officers to be leaders within the community.
What changes have you seen since working with Epic?
We had Epic Recruiting create our print material as well so we’ve seen a change at in-person recruiting events as well. Our backdrops, flyers, brochures, etc. In the past, we never got much attention at these fairs but now, with these robust visuals, a lot more people are attracted to our booth. We get to show our recruiting video as well and that helps gaining more interest from people. It’s also much easier on the day to day in directing people to the recruiting website when they’re interested. It’s much easier to start the conversation.
Are you ready to start your online recruiting efforts and take your department to the next level? Epic Recruiting is here to help and is ready to build a unique marketing approach that will allow you to stand out. Whether you have a small or larger agency, we have the tools to help you succeed and tell your individual story. Let’s get started!