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Early Warning System Now Required in All New Jersey Police Departments

Is Your Agency Prepared?

It is now mandatory for New Jersey Police Departments to use an early warning system (EWS). What is an early warning system? Here’s a snippet from the official directive: “An Early Warning System (“EW System”) is an important management tool designed to detect patterns and trends in police conduct before that conduct escalates. An effective EW System can assist a law enforcement agency in identifying and remediating problematic officer conduct that poses a potential risk to the public, to the agency, and to the officer…” Read entire document

Maybe your organization isn’t located in New Jersey and you’re thinking this doesn’t apply to you, but here are some good reasons to consider making an early warning system a priority for your agency. A thorough early warning system:

  • Detects negative behavior patterns before it becomes serious
  • Identifies and encourages positive behavior
  • Emphasizes coaching and leadership opportunities for managers
  • Documents how your organization is helping personnel improve
  • Increases employee retention, saving time and money

Early warning systems are most successful when first-line supervision plays an active role in helping personnel modify their behavior. Executives will gain insight into both how their management team is leading, and also show potential areas for improvement. As a result, early intervention is driven upward throughout each level of the organization, encouraging your employees’ best performance.

An Early Warning System is Proactive vs Reactive

Speaking from experience

Two of Guardian Tracking’s founders know this from experience. Leon Wasilewski and Mike Reed joined the Anderson (IN) Police Department in the late 1970s. They patrolled together, became detectives, and retired at the rank of lieutenant. Leon’s career path was in supervisory support; Mike’s was in operations. In the early 1990s, Leon became the APD’s accreditation manager; both he and Mike were CALEA (Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies) assessors. This exposure showed them that the problems of employee performance management were universal and that early intervention is essential for any organization. Thus, the creation of Guardian Tracking.