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Responce week 3

I need a response to the following 50 words.



Present police organizations are faced with ever expanding scenarios that challenge the effectiveness of their organizational structures.  These organizations are of various sizes but have some factors in common which include a social structure, composed of the social relationships among their members and a need for a hierarchal command structure that supports the purposes, goals and objectives of the department.  Our text (Swanson, Territo, & Taylor, 2012, p 175) identifies the need for police managers to maintain an organization that meets society’s needs and the needs of the officers who work in the department.  While there may be other theories on how to best implement a structure that enables managers to achieve this objective, a traditional approach should be at the core of the structure, however flexibility must be a central characteristic to afford adaptability as needed to the formal structure.  This means that an established ‘known’ structure must be at the heart of formal organizations.  It must take into account that these social relationships accomplish a number of tasks, from socializing new members to accomplishing the goals of the organization.  But importantly, organizational structure serves as the apparatus through which organizations accomplish the division of labor and the coordination of work (Maguire 2002).  These structures allow police agencies to accomplish a range of goals by dividing workers into different work groups and specialties as well as facilitating the management and control of these workers (Maguire 2002).


Maguire (2002) also identified three dimensions of organizational complexity which included vertical, functional, and geographic.  Any applied theory must account for the vertical, that is the chain of command, the functional complexity based on the actual environment and the nature and the allowance for decision-making discretion to its line-level officers for efficiency.  For example the functionality of police agencies may dictate divided tasks among specialized units such as a community policing unit or a traffic enforcement unit (Paoline, 2006).  The geographical consideration is important in that some police agencies are more spread out in terms of geography and territory and may require more or less precinct stations, substations, and patrol beats.


Furthermore increasing organizational complexity affects how police agencies tailor their response to specific goals.  Specifically the advent of technology may also impact the best organizational theory.  For instance the organizational theory employed in today’s police department must account for how the utilization of an Information Systems has allowed police departments that implement tools, such as COMPSTAT (Computer Statistics), to respond to crime faster.  For example, COMPSTAT can be considered a police management technique, however it is a software system.  It is effectively an information system used by police department to employ information technology.  The COMPSTAT system is intended to provide non-technical law enforcement personnel, especially command staff, who are either attending COMPSTAT meetings or perhaps simply have a need to access information from their own desks, with sophisticated query and analysis tools, thus permitting more flexible and spontaneous manipulation of the data.  (Information Systems Technology Enhancement Project (ISTEP), 2003)


Essentially applying a traditional theory works well as long as it allows for an evolving culture and agency. 



Information Systems Technology Enhancement Project (ISTEP), (2003), Phase II Case Studies, Final Report, Community Oriented Policing Services, US Department of Justice, Retrieved from


Maguire, E.R. (2002), Organizational Structure in Large Police Organizations: Context, Complexity and Control, SUNY Press, Albany, NY.


Paoline, E. A. (2006). Organizational structure in American police agencies: Context, complexity, and control. Policing, 29(1), 182-184


Swanson, M., Territo, L., & Taylor, B. (2012). Police administration: Structure processes and behavior (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.


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