As police departments struggle to recruit qualified and diverse officers, it has become increasingly critical for recruitment teams to identify strategies to reach modern candidates effectively. From utilizing social media campaigns and automated digital tracking tools to partnering with local colleges, there are various ideas that agencies can begin embracing today to enhance their police recruitment initiatives.
Police recruiting is essential for department longevity and community development. At Epic Recruiting, our approach is to empower departments with the best recruiting tactics to attract police officers and maintain employment within the establishment. Here are our tips every agency should consider when working with a recruiting company.
1. Implement strategies to improve an agency's community reputation.
Developing and implementing strategies to improve an agency’s community reputation is a critical step in modernizing the field of law enforcement. Establishing trust within the community is integral for building bridges and fostering meaningful relationships between police officers and local citizens. To build trust, police agencies must champion transparency and accountability – two essential criteria for solid public confidence and rapport. Moreover, part of these efforts should include the following:
- Hosting open forums.
- Engaging in outreach initiatives to educate the public about the department.
- Being available to answer common questions or concerns citizens may have about law enforcement activities.
By taking a proactive strategy to address issues head-on, an agency can help build a professional relationship with its community and earn better reputations with those they serve.
2. Provide resources for officer-wellbeing and agency culture
A department’s current officers are its greatest asset in recruitment – or its worst enemy if they do not support the agency. The City of Bend (Ore.) has taken proactive steps to ensure their officers are content and that the job is enjoyable by targeting mental health and wellness with several initiatives. These include mindfulness retreats, yoga classes, family-friendly festivals for current employees, creating restorative resting rooms for on-call officers, as well as offering support groups specifically for those in law enforcement. Many departments also provide:
- Spousal support group resources.
- Training activities for adults and children.
- Local participation of officers and department employees within the community.
Going above and beyond to invest in their agency staff provides a culture of support from the department attractive to newcomers. Additionally, a department with a high-reputation standard for current employees reflects well on the efforts to attract quality recruits who want to participate in a department culture that extends more than typical employee benefits while on and off the clock.
3. Highlight your agency's competitive advantage(s).
What does it mean to highlight a department’s competitive advantage? Highlighting a department’s competitive advantage is an effective way to attract potential recruits and promote the community’s knowledge of associated benefits provided by an agency. It allows decision-makers to demonstrate what makes their department stand out from their competitors, ultimately deepening the effectiveness of their recruiting techniques. For example, one department may emphasize employee benefits such as comprehensive wellness programs or incentives for volunteer work.
At the same time, another may use its commitment to community development initiatives or lucrative career track opportunities as a recruitment savvy diverse asset. Regardless of the methods utilized, understanding a particular department’s unique attributes is essential to effectively display value-adding benefits that prospective officers and citizens can rely on.
4. Enhance your law enforcement organization's brand.
Brand management is only sometimes at the forefront of an agency’s strategic process. That is where Epic Recruiting comes in. Our Epic Recruiting team is not only forthright with our law enforcement knowledge but also qualified to strategically identify and explore branding techniques to enhance an agency’s message, culture, and recruiting efforts. We provide law enforcement with the following services that directly impact an agency’s branding:
- Digital marketing strategy
- Video production assistance
- Web development services
- Advertising services
- Diversity services
Learn more about the services we offer for police departments here.
5. Simplify the application process
Adding to the already rigorous questions posed upon prospects during the police officer recruiting process, delays in providing job offers can encourage applicants to look elsewhere for employment. Rather than allowing this to happen, departments may consider extending preliminary job offers or provisional appointments to aspiring officers while they undergo background investigations.
This strategy is being adopted increasingly by police agencies to maintain a competitive edge regarding the recruitment and retention of officers. Utilizing such an approach will prove beneficial for those prospective law enforcement personnel who are anxious about entering their new careers without delay and ensure that agencies benefit from greater applicant control of their hiring processes.
6. Streamline the hiring process
Automating the usual tedious application process is a great way to increase form completion and submission rates. Streamlining becomes even more critical when dealing with large amounts of applicants, as it can save time and simplify complex details. Taking the application and acceptance process further by implementing scheduled weekend recruitment days may be especially useful in reaching potential participants.
Not only does this help promote convenience for those targeting busy weekdays, but it also offers an excellent opportunity for networking and gaining closer insight into accepted students or program participants. Altogether, faster and easier application processes are invaluable to recruiting participants and mitigating efficiency losses associated with manual or drawn-out procedures.
7. Update your agency website
In today’s modern digital age, a slow, archaic website could deter a younger pool of applicants who desire an up-to-date digital experience. Having an effective web presence is essential to jump-starting your recruiting efforts. Your website should be eye-catching, easy to use, and optimized for user experience. With careful SEO strategy and optimization techniques, you can work towards showing up on the first page of Google, so potential candidates find your site quickly and easily.
Additionally, an agency should create content that captures candidates’ attention and convinces them to apply. Like any other web-based product or service, you must constantly test to gather data about user engagement to refine and improve the website for better conversion results.
When done right, the combination of professional management of SEO and valuable content can help put you at the forefront of recruiting success. That’s where Epic Recruiting steps in. Our team manages your website, from creative content to Google ads. We have industry experience and know how to revamp your website to reflect your agency accurately. Contact us today and learn about how we can help modernize your digital presence.
8. Provide diversity services for your department
At Epic, we are committed to helping our clients find a recruiting process that aligns with their organization’s values. Our team of professionals understands the pivotal role of recruitment in fostering an atmosphere of trust between an organization and its current and future employees, helping to ensure a thriving department culture.
From hiring approaches and tools that help reach the right candidate pool to the interview and onboarding procedures that accurately reflect the department’s identity, Epic provides advanced strategies tailored to each organization’s needs. With this approach, we strive to empower departments with the resources needed for successful recruiting—allowing them to focus on finding passionate people who will serve their community with distinction.
We offer the following diversity services to our departments:
- Diversity Recruiting Strategy
- Candidate Engagement
- Media Relations
- Community Outreach
- Social Media Management
Learn more about our diversity services here.
Experience the Epic Recruiting difference in your department
Epic Recruiting is a trusted name in law enforcement and the go-to source for national recruiting departments. Our comprehensive and industry-leading solutions help departments of all sizes reach their recruiting goals, no matter how ambitious. We offer engaging and creative campaigns tailored to each department’s unique needs.
The talented team at Epic Recruiting is ready to make your recruiting efforts a success. From videos and photography to online campaigns, we have the tools to promote your department and create a steady stream of qualified applicants. Contact us today and see why so many law enforcement departments choose us!