Course Description

Many blame the current hiring and retention struggles in law enforcement primarily on the decline in public support for the police—fueled by biased media coverage and exploited by some politicians and activist groups.  Obviously, these conditions have not helped police recruiting and retention, but other root causes of the problems run much deeper and are, in many ways, more troubling in the long-term.

These root cause challenges are shared by those struggling to hire qualified applicants to replace retiring teachers, firefighters, nurses and countless other professionals. And these challenges will likely have effects lasting for many years to come. 

As a result, rather than approaching these challenges as if they simply represent a minor, short-term challenge, the likes of which law enforcement has seen with some frequency during times of low unemployment, police leaders and elected officials need to think about how to survive the effects of a storm that may last for many years to come.

To accomplish this, law enforcement leaders will be required to:

  1. Recognize that this storm is different, that it is real and that it is here
  2. Stop lowering standards as a short-term fix for getting “warm bodies” 
  3. Be honest and transparent with your officers and your community about the staffing realities in the coming years
  4. Start to have hard conversations about changing the way we’ve always done things when it comes to recruiting, retention and officer deployment

In this two-hour webinar, Attorney Matt Dolan will discuss some of the demographic challenges and possible responses for law enforcement agencies grappling with the prospect of new staffing realities.  

The discussion will place a particular emphasis on:

  • Understanding the shrinking applicant pool made more dire by issues of mental health disorders, addiction and obesity among young would-be applicants
  • Redeployment options with an emphasis on patrol and investigations
  • Determining community priorities and clearly communicating deployment strategies
  • Utilizing technology to enhance operations
  • Re-examining personnel policies—including long-term personal leave and part-time work
  • Civilianizing administrative positions


Director, Dolan Consulting Group

| Attorney Matt Dolan

Matt Dolan is a licensed attorney in the State of Illinois, who specializes in training and advising public safety agencies in matters of labor and employment law. His practice experience focuses on employment discrimination claims brought under federal law, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ("Title VII"), the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA"). He received his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from DePaul University and his J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law.

Matt serves as a public safety instructor with Dolan Consulting Group. He has trained and advised thousands of public safety professionals throughout the United States in matters of legal liability related to personnel management.

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Before You Start

    • Consent Questions

  • 2


    • Weathering the Storm in Police Staffing —A Positive Vision for the Next 10 Years | Hour 1

    • Weathering the Storm in Police Staffing —A Positive Vision for the Next 10 Years | Hour 2