If you were Sergeant Thompson, how would you conduct the performance evaluation? What changes could you make that would reflect the true performance of these officers? What other types of evaluations might be a better measure of individual as well as group performance? Being new to her supervisory position in a patrol group, Sergeant Gina Thompson could use the opportunity to effect changes in the evaluation of the men under her. In order to do so, Sergeant Thompson has to conduct a personal study of the evaluation criteria in order to determine the weak and strong points of the areas assessed.
From her initial assessment, she decided that the evaluation is not going to make her men look good despite their improved performance. From this initial assessment, she has to isolate the metrics in the evaluation criteria that she thinks are not fair and equitable to measure the performance of the patrol officers. In all probability, the evaluation criteria and the process of doing it are all traditional, meaning, the evaluation process is one sided.
The officer being assessed does not have the chance to evaluate himself and highlight his achievements for the past six and twelve months. If this were the case, Sergeant Thompson could include a portion in the evaluation form wherein the officer is allowed to assess his performance based on how he perceived it. The officer is free to cite or highlight events that he thinks relevant to the evaluation. Another way of approaching the problem is for Sergeant Thompson to discuss revising the form with his chief of police, a person known for his open-mindedness and progressive ideas.
Sergeant Thompson should explain that she seeks to revise the evaluation form because the patrol officers deserve it and to maintain the high morale among the men in uniform. The chief of police will likely agree with the sergeant for the need to include a self-evaluation part in the evaluation process. Once she has the chief's approval, the sergeant could ask the help or opinion of a human resource agency on how best to revise the form in such a manner that the positive events will not be buried.
The sergeant could also solicit input from other supervisors like herself, and from the people working in the different patrol groups. They need to be asked on what aspect of their job are not being properly assessed by the department. Aside from this, the sergeant could also ask the community for inputs on how best to evaluate the patrol officers. More importantly, Sergeant Thompson must find a way to include statistical data in the reports.
For instance, one question in the evaluation form should ask a patrol officer how many arrests did he make for the evaluation period compared to the previous, and what factors contributed to the increase or decrease of the number of arrests. By providing areas in the evaluation form wherein officers can fully explain themselves, they have a better chance of getting good ratings. Finally, when Sergeant Thompson has already compiled all the necessary data, she can already draft the revised individual performance form for approval of the chief of police.
For measuring the performance of the patrol group, this entails figures and comparisons with previous evaluation periods in order to highlight the differences. Factors for the changes should also be taken into account, including the cooperation and participation of the community members. It would also be a good idea to randomly ask members of the community to evaluate the patrol group on how well they perform their duties. The evaluations will of course be anonymous. In this manner, the police department will gain an insight into the community's real needs and how they regard the patrol officers.