The shortage of police officers has become a crisis across the United States and is having a significant impact on public safety, with many cities and towns struggling to provide adequate protection to their citizens. Baltimore is one city that has been struggling in recent years, with a federal judge recently calling the lack of personnel a severe crisis that must be corrected. The agency is short almost 500 officers and is increasing weekly.


There are several factors that are contributing to the crisis including a higher level of attrition, and lack of a recruiting strategy that can maintain adequate staffing levels.


While some have blamed the attrition level on the recent negative press coverage of the profession, the age of the workforce plays a vital role. In 1994, President Bill Clinton, along with now President Biden, pushed for the passage of the 1994 Crime Bill. Part of that legislation funded 100,000 additional cops for local police agencies.


That was 29 years ago and with many retirements ranging from 20 to 35 years of service, the attrition will be continuing for some time in the future.


Doug Larsen is a retired police officer and co-founder of SAFEGUARD Recruiting. He says that to avoid attrition in any work environment, especially one that is aging, recruiting should be effective, efficient, and ongoing.


“While communities may just be aware of the decline of officers within their area, this is an issue that has been building for several years and the only way to avoid it was to recruit at a high level long before the anticipated attrition,” Larsen said.


That ship has passed but there is hope.


Doug and his partner have taken a philosophy that they pioneered in the trucking industry and brought in to law enforcement and they have seen tremendous success.


“We knew that we would struggle bringing a recruiting company to law enforcement because frankly, the profession has never needed a recruiting company,” Larsen said.


While that is certainly true, Larsen said the level of personnel now needed combined with the changing climate of the country, makes it nearly impossible for many agencies to recruit at the level needed.


“Recruiting in any profession is a skilled job and today, those skills include the automated technology that enables an agency to compete with so many others trying to do the same thing. It is unreasonable to expect someone within law enforcement to be the expert that is needed to do this effectively,” Larsen said.


That is where SAFEGUARD Recruiting and Doug’s team comes in. A recent client hired SAFEGUARD Recruiting after the traditional methods were not working and within a few weeks, the recruiting police officer asked Doug to “slow the campaign.”


It was too late.


Four weeks later, the officer had 132 candidates after just $1000 was spent on the campaign. It sounds too good to be true but according to Larsen this is exactly what their campaigns look like.


“Unfortunately, our business model is designed to put us out of business. We have been so effective, after a few months the client typically has all they need,” Larsen said.


You can contact Larsen and his team below and find out how they can help you.

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