8 Things Your Police Department Website Must Have for Successful Recruitment

1/3/2019

These days, having a website for your police department is a necessity. A website gives you the opportunity to present your department to the community and potential hires in the best possible light, as well as provide key information in an easily accessible format. Here are the 8 things every police department website should have.

  1. Accurate, up-to-date information. When someone wants to find information about your police department, there’s a good chance they’ll visit your website rather than make a phone call. Make sure your website has all the information they might need, including phone numbers, location, hours, and how to apply.
  2. A department overview. Potential applicants who visit your police department’s website want to know what your department is all about. A brief overview on the home page of your website should give site visitors key information about your department’s history, personnel, mission, policing approach, and any other relevant facts.
  3. A community overview. Every police department is heavily influenced by the community it serves, and potential applicants will likely visit your site to learn more about your community. Your website should include an overview of the city, town, or region your department serves, including physical characteristics, demographics, culture, and population density.     
  4. A welcoming appearance. A few years ago, police department websites often had a tough, military-like appearance. Now, in an effort to improve community-police relations and portray police as trusted protectors rather than fearsome enforcers, many sites are opting for a softer look highlighting partnership with the community rather than weapons and other displays of force. Make sure your site represents your department in a way that feels welcoming.
  5. Visual elements. Photos and videos are a great way to give your department some personality and keep site visitors interested. Consider adding a video welcome message from your chief and feature photos of your officers at work in the community.
  6. A simple, easy to use navigation. Is the information on your department website easy to find, or is key information hidden several pages deep or under multiple menu items? If potential applicants can't easily find information about your recruitment process and find the application quickly, they will lose interest. Make sure your site is clearly organized so people can easily find what they’re looking for.
  7. A mobile-friendly design. More and more people are using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets to access the internet—if your website does not display or function well on those devices, you’re likely to lose site visitors. Consult your tech team to make sure your site is mobile-friendly.
  8. Links to social media. If your department has a Facebook page or any other social media account, be sure to include a link on your website to give visitors an easy way to find your social profiles.

 

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