Viewing 13 reply threads
  • Author
    • #4489
    • #6356
      mmWayne Griffin

      I am all for SWAT Teams “recruiting” new officers. With my department, and officer has to be on the department at least two years before he can apply to be on SWAT. There have been some exceptions to this rule. For instance, if an officer has prior law enforcement experience, tactical experience, or a military background I have seen this two year rule waived.

      I have to say its a balancing act though. If you recruit a new officer, and he is still learning his primary job duties then you add the stress and complexity with everything that goes with becoming a tactical team member you may run the risk of losing that officer.

      If you wait more than two years to recruit an officer, you run the risk of that a highly motivated new officer being placed on a shift with one if not several veteran disgruntled officers and his interest level in not only SWAT but the department as a whole may dwindle.

    • #6461
      Jeffrey Brown

      My training and experience has taught me that “new officers” with little or know experience may not make the best SWAT operators. The key word is new. Experience comes in several categories. Some of these new officers, as was the case with me, come to the job with special training and active combat experience. Combat experience in itself does not necessarily make an officer a better candidate for SWAT, but it may. Veterans with the right training and experience can become exceptional operators and leaders. Officers who are new to a department, but not new to the profession may also bring training and experience to the table. In the multi-jurisdictional SWAT world I have have worked in, officers may change departments and continue to serve on the same team. Training and experience are key factors my team looks at when we are filling SWAT positions. We encourage officers to train hard, and point them in the right direction when it comes to training opportunities. Officers may have the opportunity to attend basic SWAT, or other applicable training as patrol officers. These the type of self motivated, mature officer who may make the best new SWAT candidates

      In conclusion, I believe new officers must be given the opportunity to gain experience and mature before being recruited for SWAT. As with most rules of thumb there are exceptions.

    • #6474
      mmDrew Leblanc

      I think in todays realm of SWAT you almost have to recruit new officers. I think the more we see the age of modern day policing change to a more aggressive approach against us the more people do not want to be subjected to even more danger. I believe SWAT is a certain bread of human, and with that I think the ability to recruit qualified personnel is a must.

    • #7333
      Randy Pollard

      This question has double meaning to me.
      On one hand, yes, we must be involved in the recruitment of new officers to our department. SWAT has always been seen as the “cool” piece for the public. At least it is here. Any new prospect has the opportunity to speak with some of our tactical operators when considering employment here.
      On the other hand, if you are speaking about recruiting brand new officers to the tactical team, I would have to object. Our prerequisites are not that stringent. We require at least one year sworn before you can try out. Our situation may be a little different here though. If you make it through the tryout process, you still have a one year probationary period with the team. I know teams that bring members on after a very brief period. This means that you will be at least a two year deputy with my department before you become a full member.

    • #7466
      mmJacob Taylor

      I also have mixed feelings about this topic. Recently we have identified some issues with the officers applying for team openings. There was a drop in the number and quality overall. This has caused us to identify quality officers who are respected and have the potential of being good team members. Officers who work with these potential candidates are then asked to recruit them. This isn’t just a conversation. We will attempt to get these officers to training on department time, use them on call outs for menial tasks and have them to the range to shoot with us. This allows us time to evaluate them early on and gives them a chance to understand how the team works and if they have a desire to join.

    • #7727
      Anthony Kies

      I believe that all of your department teams should recruit new officers. To get out in the community as a SWAT officer and recruit new officers is a great tool for gaining recruits. It doesn’t have to be the kick in door method of recruiting, but rather being able to show them what we (you) as a department have to offer. SWAT is a team asset for many departments and if trained correctly and ran right it would be a great tool to use for recruiting new officers.

    • #7739
      mmChris Eklund

      Often times there are misconceptions about what SWAT’s mission and/or responsibilities are. Recruiting young officers who have shown potential as thinkers and potentially future operators should be recruited and, at a minimum, be given actual, true information about the team to clarify or dispel any information they may have gathered from someone who has no function with the team.

    • #7840
      Max Yakovlev

      We have to recruit new officers. None of use can work forever 🙂 and we need the new generation to step up.

    • #8062
      Adam Bradford

      I believe a SWAT team should carefully consider who they are recruiting and take into account the Officer’s overall experience. As a new Officer, I believe some may be an asset, where others may not be. If a new Officer has a tactical background (Military/prior Law Enforcement) they may be a great recruit. On the other side of the argument, if the Officer is “new” and has limited experience, they are still developing and should be given the time to develop appropriately. Actively recruiting is good because current Operators may see something in an Officer, certain qualities, that would be a great foundation to build on.

    • #8319
      Jon Thompson

      I have mixed feelings about this issue and lean towards saying “no.” Recent experience at my agency shows that newer officers may be the most excited about joining SWAT but they are still very young in their careers, with a lot to learn. My agencies proximity to a major army base has a lot of former Army Rangers getting recruited into LE, which is great…but applying Tennessee v Garner on the street in the middle of a dynamic and moving situation can be very different than a firefight in Iraq. “Recruiting” new officers also has shown in the past to present problems as younger officers may take this recruitment as a “job offer” of sorts and then get offended when someone else is picked. As a team commander, I make training opportunities (ie: SIMS magnets for SWAT training) available to all interested parties but I don’t necessarily “recruit.”

    • #8337
      Jesse Laintz

      Going to copy a little of the first response here. There is nothing wrong with active team members advertising for the team and reaching out to other officers. This allows for those that may be interested to ask questions and gain knowledge on the team and how they operate. This is especially true for newer employees in the department. As long as the recruiting is to create interest in joining the team and not selecting the people they think they want on the team, like a club instead of a team. When one is given something instead of earning it, there is a possibility of less commitment.

    • #8460
      mmShawn Wilson

      Selection and Assessment is a continuous process that never stops for even the most seasoned SWAT officer. A SWAT Team that has high moral and a positive image within the department will attract the most qualified candidates within the department.

    • #8504
      Thomas Carroll

      Yes. As Shawn Wilson pointed out selection and assessment is a continuous process. Understanding that I encourage new officers to try out for the team. I look at it this way. As a collateral duty team, it takes approximately two years to get an officer with no prior tactical experience to be proficient for deployment. Start mentoring them right away and influence their development. There will always be attrition and there will always be new officers. We have much success with recruiting new officers and it is a force multiplier for the shifts.

Viewing 13 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.