Enhancing internal communication for police officers
When I was young I worked in a grocery store in Los Angeles, in a low income part of town. There was often a need for law enforcement to come handle matters at the store, and I remember being impressed by the officers. I got to go on a few ride-alongs and it piqued my interest in law enforcement. I worked as a sworn officer for several years. In 1990, I moved my family to Lake Havasu for the schools and the quality of life here. I've enjoyed working in many capacities during my tenure and currently serve as operations captain, responsible for our patrol, investigative and specialty units.
Having worked graveyard shifts myself, I knew one of the unique challenges of police work is that officers are out on patrol 24/7 but detectives and the command staff work regular hours. I realized it would be great if officers and support personnel could have a way to communicate directly with command to raise questions, new ideas and comments. I used Google Sites to create a discussion forum called LHCPD Watercooler. Staff use the site to keep officers informed of decisions, plans and upcoming changes and solicit feedback on specific topics. Employees can comment and respond back, so there's a timely two-way communication going on that can be accessed from a mobile device or computer inside a police vehicle, at any time, day or night. Our goal is to take advantage of the good ideas and knowledge possessed throughout the organization, and to avoid any misinformation about what decisions are being made and why. This kind of transparency allows everyone to be better informed about the workings of the organization as a whole.
We take pride in being a progressive police force. Using this particular tool enhances our internal communication and helps us all focus on the primary mission of keeping our community safe and secure.
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