(Please see Independent review of policing by Sir Ronnie Flanagan - interim report)

A National Police Force, such as in Great Britain and New Zealand, have the most to gain by deploying a standard National Scheduling and Resource Management System.

Studies have shown that requests for Police Service Service requiring a timely response are surprisingly similar for both city and rural areas. Although the volume is obviously different, the call pattern generally peaks around 8 or 9pm, and bottoms out between 4am and 5am.

Similarly, call volume during the early hours is about 30 to 35% of that of peak times.

It follows therefore that to meet peak demands, more officers are required during the late evening hours, than for the 4am to 5 am slack period.

Past and current practice in Police Management produces lineups which simply do not follow the service requirement patterns. For years and years, in study after study, Police Management clearly acknowledges that Police Response to calls for service are less than desireable (in fact unacceptable), and promise to make changes.


  • Great Britain - Improving Demand Management - Appendix 'D' (Foreword by Director of Police Standards Unit - British Home Office)
    HMIC’s baseline assessments published in May 2004, highlighted that demand management still remains a challenge for most forces. No force received an ‘excellent’ rating in call handling and only a third were rated ‘good’ in the assessments. This shows there is significant room for improvement.
  • New Zealand Police - - Independent External Review - Rostering

    177. The rostering practices and employment terms therefore conspire to constrain flexible rostering around known and anticipated high call volume periods.
    180. Information on rostering should be sought from existing contacts within other jurisdictions, including the relevant panel members, as a no cost option for New Zealand Police.
  • Oakland (California) - Police Reform White Paper
    Under the existing shift plan, officers are regularly scheduled for four 10-hour (4/10) shifts a week. The current 4/10 work week does not support the geographic reorganization proposed by the Harnett Report. Although 4/10 work weeks are not uncommon in police departments, this pattern is highly inefficient for a number of reasons:

Generally, this means 'cracking the whip', requiring already over burdened front line officers to chase calls even harder, work longer hours and extra shifts.

Management promise that they will try to hire more officers, when already finances are stretched to the breaking point.

Why is this problem so universal?

The answer is very apparent when you study call patterns and compare them with the shift schedules worked by first response officers.

Calls for service patterns are like production quotas in a factory. An efficient factory will match the work force as closely as possible to the workload.

The vast majority (if not most) Police Services do not even know what the production quotas are. Further, they are unwilling or unable to admit that it is not only possible, but essential that manpower resources be matched as closely as possible to these quotas.

Traditional shift rotations do not produce a deployment profile that matches the calls for service quota as they are too simplistic.

When dealing with 24/7 shifting, the one dimensional approach using 8hr, 10hr or 12 hr shifts results in a flat deployment profile, or a flat profile punctuated by spikes where resources are overlapped while trying to fit them into a 24 hour slab.

By simply adding a few new dimensions, like different shift lengths, coupled with alternating start or finish times, it is possible to match very closely the manpower requirements to the calls for service graphs.

This is achieved with close attention with health and safety factors affecting the work force. (see below)

Old fashioned scheduling 'solutions' will produce:

  • Tardy response to calls for service. (a Customer Service and Officer Safety Issue)
  • Wastage of resources (A Cost/Effectiveness Issue)
  • Officer Burnout (A Health and Safety Issue)

By making slight adjustments to some start and finish times, shift length and day off rotation, the WHITE U.P.S.© provides a Schedule and Resource Management system which provides the following benefits and advantages.

  • Officers are scheduled to meet service demands more closely. (This puts more officers on the street before, during and after peak service request times.)
  • Resources are deployed in 2 Platoons (or Companies, Groups etc.) - One Platoon ON DUTY, the other OFF DUTY.
  • Officers are assigned by slot number (i.e. A1 - 8, B1 - 8 and AW1 and 2, BW1 and 2) which rotates like this - 12 hrs - 10.5 hrs - 12 hrs - 10.5 hrs.

The WHITE U.P.S. is 'anchored' to specific rotation dates. In this way, all Forces using the schedule are synchronized as far as scheduling goes. In this way, 'A' Platoon in (for instance) Essex County, would be working with 'A' Platoon in all neigbouring jurisdictions using the schedule.

Moreover, a National Strategy would produce the ability to find out at a moment's notice what resources are scheduled on a given date and time.

The Scheduling System projects, up to and including the last current day of the schedule, every tour of duty scheduled for every officer, and graphs the lineup.

Supervisors have the ability to make timely, informed decisions when officers request a modification of their schedule.

The following shift modifications can be made simply and securely.

  • Whole Day Off
  • Change of Hours (i.e. late start, early start, time off etc.)
  • Overtime Shift
  • Shift Exchange (with another officer)
  • Day Off Exchange (Regular work day off in exchange for working a regular day off).
Officers can feel confident that their requests for time off will be handled quickly, therefore adding a new dimension to the work/life balance equation.

Officers have the ability to securely access their schedule from their home computer, and make requests for modification of their schedule (Internet access required) with our 'SATELLITE' software.