Police Technical Assistance

The CPSM Approach – Police Operations

The CPSM team developed a standardized approach to conducting analyses of police departments by combining the experience sets of dozens of subject matter experts.

We begin projects with a request for data, documents and worksheets.

Next, we extract raw data on calls for service from an agency’s computer aided dispatch system. The data are sorted and analyzed to identify performance indicators (i.e., response times, workload by time, multiple unit dispatching, etc.) for comparison to industry benchmarks. Performance indicators are valuable measures of agency efficiency and effectiveness. The findings are shown in tabular as well as graphic form and follow a standard format for presentation of the analyzed data. While the format will be similar from community to community, the data reported are unique to the specific agency.

CPSM also conducts an on-site operational review. Here the performance indicators serve as the basis for the operational reviews. Prior to any on-site arrival of an CPSM team, agencies are asked to compile a number of key operational documents (i.e., policies and procedures, assets lists, etc.). Most on-site reviews consist of interviews with management and supervisors, as well as rank and file officers; attendance at roll calls and ride-alongs with officers. We review case files with investigators and observe dispatch operations to assess compliance with the provided written documentation.

As a result of on- site visits and data assessments, our subject matter experts produce a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the department). We have found that this standardized approach ensures that we measure and observe all of the critical components of agencies.

Additionally, this methodology can be integrated with ongoing support customized to the unique needs of your community. Strategic planning, risk assessment, and training services are also available to assist with the implementation of CPSM recommendations and developing new processes and programs that may arise as implementation evolves.

The following information describes the CPSM approach to studying, understanding, evaluating, and reporting on police departments around the country. Although no two police departments are the same, a standardized approach to department evaluation ensures a rigorous and methodological process that permits benchmarking, comparing, and assessing within the context of the best practices of American law enforcement. However, each locality has unique characteristics that present policing challenges. Integrating a standardized approach within the context of local variability permits an accurate assessment of the organization in its political environment, and further permits CPSM to offer recommendations that comport with the best practices in policing, yet tailor-made for the client community.