Forensic Technology Center of Excellence


Tackling Employee Wellness: The Phoenix Police Department’s Crime Lab Approach

Tackling Employee Wellness: The Phoenix Police Department’s Crime Lab Approach

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Thursday, June 18th, 2020 1:00:00 PM ET – 2:30:00 PM ET
Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes

Organizations often struggle with building supportive organizational cultures, employee morale, and interpersonal relationships. The Phoenix Police Department (PPD) Crime Laboratory has implemented many strategies to address these organizational challenges.

The Phoenix Police Laboratory is a full-service forensic laboratory accredited by the ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB) to international standards. During this past year, the PPD Crime Laboratory developed a strategic plan with five key objectives. One of those objectives is dedicated to employee well-being: “The overall health and well-being of our employees is key to providing the highest levels of service to our community. We will employ the following programs to increase employee awareness and resources dedicated to health and well-being.”

Within this strategic objective, laboratory leadership identified seven key focus areas with associated action items:

– Review and update a lab-wide onboarding program for new employees, including a lab employee orientation, quality assurance training, and the transition to their technical training program.

– Celebrate employee successes with the entire laboratory (i.e. personal achievements, case processing, team contributions, etc). This includes recommending and authoring commendations, nominating for Departmental and City Awards, and recommending acknowledgements by professional organizations.

– Create a Wellness Committee that will coordinate and facilitate employee well-being events each quarter and disseminate information from the City Wellness Committee.

– Partner with the department’s Employee Assistant Unit to provide training and information on vicarious trauma and resources to deal with the stresses being encountered by forensic employees.

– Administer an annual employee survey and include employee feedback in the annual strategic planning sessions.

– Conduct Laboratory Services Bureau (LSB) team-building and cross-sectional activities to promote the development of work relationships and communication.

– Publish the quarterly LSB newsletter.

Detailed Learning Objectives:

1) Introduce employee wellness as an objective in the strategic plan for an accredited laboratory.

2) Introduce employee wellness examples.

3) Introduce relationship between employee wellness, morale, and performance.

Funding for this Forensic Technology Center of Excellence event has been provided by the National Institute of Justice.

Jody Wolf

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