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In the recruitment of the new officers, the right process is necessary to ensure transparency and accountability. This essay describes the selection process for a local, state, or federal agency officer. It also describes some components of the training process and career development programs for officers.

Selection process

The real selection process always starts after one has met the minimum eligibility requirements. If one has prior knowledge about the type of agency to which he/she will be applying, the process will become easier than for than for those who are starting right from the research of the jobs. Policing is made up of many categories of agencies and many of them fall within each category.  Therefore, some steps of selection are standard across all the agencies while others are not standard. Although there are many similarities among the agencies, the listing of hiring requirements and the eligibility standards are not always the same for all agencies or even for a particular category of agencies such as local, state and federal agencies.


The most common officer selection steps include submission of completed application form, passing a written test which is multiple-choice, passing a physical ability test, passing the background investigation, passing psychological and medical tests. Other agencies sometimes rely on oral interviews and lie detector tests (Leonard B. 1999).

Application and the Written Exam  

The applicant will be required to complete the relevant application which is done before the writing exam is done. This initial application asks many detailed questions that are checked against later questionnaires completed by the applicant for a background investigation. This also gives the applicant with an entry the exam. The applicant is not allowed whatsoever to cheat or lie in this exam. The false information is the basis of eliminating one from the applicants' pool without putting into consideration what the applicant scored in the written exam.

Generally, the agencies rely on the written aptitude tests as the first step in the recruiting process after the application has been completed. Some agencies schedule written tests only every few years due to the high costs involved. Other agencies have the walk-in test whereby they give tests on regular basis to applicants who have previously applied or even to those who comes in during the exam day (Yasgoor S and Bressler C. 1998).

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In the case where one is attending a college with a criminal justice program he/she checks with the career office and many agencies schedule their written exams on local campuses. Because of the availability of the police jobs in many parts of the country, most of the agencies offer the tests at campuses where they expect to attract huge response (Ware E and Millard J. 1987).

The Internet has made it feasible for people to learn about the availability of jobs in the country. The applicants go to the chosen agency's website and complete an application. Through the filing of an application, one is assured of being notified in the event a selection test is scheduled. In the recent years, many of the agencies or departments have started to accept and appreciate the online applications and this is an efficient way to apply. Online application also allows one to make as many applications to too many departments of interest. Some agencies allow the applicants to download the relevant application forms, print the forms, and submit the completed application by means of electronic mail (Berman P. 1978).

Any civil service test administered by agency follows strict rules and regulations. When the test time starts, the door is always shut and those applicants not already in their seats will be denied entry into the test room. Unlike in college, there are no teachers who has known the applicant for a long time and who lets the applicants in when they are late. The extra minutes additional to the set exam or test time are not allowed. Depending on the size of the agency for which the applicants are tested; it might take quite a long time period for them to receive test results. When they are informed that they did not pass, they may receive information on how to appeal their results. In the brevity interest, this argument works on an assumption that the applicants passed the test and that they have been placed in the eligibility list (PAR.2002).

Career development training process

In recent years the agencies have initiated several new programs to enhance the quality and availability of better training and career development. They have made particular efforts to focus on training in tradecraft in many analytic mission areas.  By the end of the decade, the agencies aim to have a highly skilled, world-class work force that has sufficient funds and staff to perform modern missions effectively.  In most cases, these missions are operationally focused, requiring analysts to function in a crisis environment, more often than not on lower priority countries.   At the same time, the Community must continue to ensure that it has sufficient expertise to cover its high priority goals.  Much of the efforts that determine knowledge and skill requirements have to be based on the empirical methodologies for determining substantive, needs-based analytic requirements for today and tomorrow. To meet these set goals, the available resources. The developing of skills databases is a first step in developing the analytic requirements related to future work force size.  The agencies should increase efforts to develop corporate and empirical methodologies to determine the wide staffing needs; ensure that it has the required strength to meet current intelligence requirements and allow for the training and career development (Berman P. 1978).

The law agencies throughout the United States have a diverse choice of methods to assess and select their officer. The real assessment and selection methods prove critical in that process and present a prime opportunity to analyze those who will hold an enormous amount of authority. The performance of these officers is likely to undergo serious criticism by a more watchful public.

The courts have encouraged the use of assessment centers as the most fair and job-related method of assessing some agency officer candidates. No any other assessment tool can better extract behavior from candidates that would parallel their performance on the specific job. When properly executed, the assessment center approach will raise emotions that cannot be roused with some traditional testing methods.

The administrators should place the assessment center method as an integral part of a comprehensive selection procedure. In doing so, they can confidently make the new officer hires, and assure the residents that the highest quality officers serve and protect their societies.

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