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Optimizing Law Enforcement Agency Websites for Effective and Inclusive Recruitment

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2024

This guide provides readers with advice on how law enforcement agencies can optimize their recruiting website content on seven specific topics: fitness evaluations; advancement; work-life management; safety, health, and wellness; harassment and sexism; belonging and inclusion; and negative perceptions.


This document presents practical tips for updating police recruitment websites in a way that addresses barriers to law enforcement careers for women and other prospective applicants. The document encourages conveying a sense of inclusivity as well as explicitly addressing concerns reported by prospective applicants, in order to increase the number of diverse applicants and help address staffing needs and strengthen the workforce. The five principles listed for optimizing a recruiting website are: reduce ambiguity about the application process; more information is better than less; ensure that media match the overall goal and content of the web pages, and that language is aligned with policies and practices; ensure consistency across all website pages; and facilitate contact between potential applicants and agency recruiters, providing multiple avenues for contact including in-person and virtual options. Within those key principles, the guidance lists seven key barriers that dissuade applicants: concerns over inability to pass fitness evaluations; belief that there are limited opportunities for advancement; perceptions of lack of work-life balance; apprehension about safety, health, and wellness; concerns about potential harassment and sexism; doubts over fitting in to the organizational culture; and general distrust of the police or concerns about police-community relationships. This guide provides detailed discussions and advice on how to address those seven barriers, and includes web content examples for each barrier.

Date Published: April 15, 2024