How to Recruit More Female Police Officers

We all know that having women in law enforcement is important, so why is it that there are only 12.6% female officers nationwide? This is a loaded question but it is possible to recruit more female police officers to your department. In fact, in just six months, Hayward PD was able to increase female applicants by 500% when working with us.

Studies have proved that female officers are just as qualified as their male counterparts. Plus, they are able to provide different skills and perspectives. Departments across the nation struggle with recruiting women, so what type of ideas can be implemented to change this?

realistic career representation

One of the biggest mistakes in police recruiting is the representation of what a career in law enforcement is like. While the job is exciting and risky, it’s not a video game full of nonstop action. Community interaction is a huge part of the job and it’s been proven that this is one area that female police officers excel in. According to the National Center for Women and Policing, women’s interpersonal skills defuse conflict more effectively, avoiding potentially violent situations. This also creates stronger, more trusting relationships with the public. 

When advertising your department in police recruiting videos, ensure to show all aspects and positions of the career. Davis Police Department’s recruiting strategy was built around this idea. You can see in their entire marketing campaign, community relations is the priority. Additionally, they represent female police officers as much as male counterparts, which leads us to the next strategy of highlighting female officers. 

Engage with the Community

When it comes to recruiting, potential applicants want to know this would be a good fit for them. Creating mentorship between female police officers and potential recruits will create a relationship of trust and guidance. This could be through ride-alongs, FAQ sessions, one-on-one meetings or job fairs. By doing so, you’re reducing uncertainty in the application process and reassuring applicants’ decision to join law enforcement. 

When representing your department in a place like career fairs, high quality web design and booth/print material will set the tone for your police recruiting brand. Show what it means to be a part of your team and why female applicants are encouraged to join.

highlighting current female officers

While police recruitment is important, retention is debatably even more crucial. There are things you can do to empower existing female officers while recruiting new applicants as well. 

Creating a digital recruiting strategy is a way to highlight current staff while reaching new candidates. When creating a recruiting strategy, give a voice to both male and female officers. Sharing their experience and opinions will resonate more accurately to future applicants. 

At Berkeley PD, the strategy we created focused on officers as unique individuals. This allowed us to speak to applicants and community members on a more personal level. Highlighting your police officers will give a sense of pride to the work they’re doing, while showing female recruits that this could be them too.

utilize targeted online advertising

Digital recruiting is the future of police marketing. Not only do you get the most bang for your buck, but digital police recruiting allows very specific targeting and tracking for optimal results. 

Create recruiting videos and ads that feature female police officers to market across the web specifically to women, minorities, recent graduates or veterans. There are over a million police career related searches in the U.S. every month; this means the audience is there, you just have to reach them. 


At Calaveras CSO, we featured some of the female corrections officers, sharing their journey into law enforcement. Benefits of the role allow female officers to grow in the department while still prioritizing family. 

Watch as Sgt. Libier Ledezma talks about being a female police officer in the same city she grew up, Hayward, California. Being a law enforcement officer means protecting the community you care about and more. 

Mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, Berkeley PD values the unique aspects every single officer brings to the team. No matter who you are, your differences are celebrated and welcomed. 

recruit more female police officers

This police recruiting crisis is happening to departments across the nation. While it can’t be solved over night, there are ways to battle it. Building a marketing strategy that reaches women and minorities will expand your applicant pool by thousands. Women play a very important role in law enforcement, the challenge is communicating and encouraging them to apply. 

If your agency is facing police recruitment challenges, you’re not alone. Epic Recruiting is one of the nation’s top police recruiting agencies, with over 16 years of experience and we’re here to help. Reach out to us today and we’ll develop a recruiting campaign that will have applicants knocking at your door. Let’s get started! 

Like this article?

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Linkdin
Share on Pinterest

Ride Along with epic

Sign-up for the Epic Recruiting newsletter and receive the latest industry news on Police Recruitment. You will also see behind the scenes on how Epic Recruiting is leading the industry helping departments recruit faster and more successfully than ever before.