Management Studies

Management studies are conducted at the request of a local agency executive. A typical study focuses on organizational structure, property system, patrol workload and staffing, or records systems. Guidelines for requesting management counseling services can be found in Commission Procedure G-1, POST Regulations.

Management Counseling Services Application Process

Management Study Request applications will only be accepted online.

Program Eligibility

Any POST-participating agency is eligible to request Management Counseling Services through the Management Counseling and Projects Bureau (MCPB) at POST. 

These services are provided pursuant to Penal Code §13513,  which states in part, "Upon the request of a local jurisdiction, the commission shall provide a counseling service to such local jurisdiction for the purpose of improving the administration, management or operations of a police agency and may aid such jurisdiction in implementing improved practices and techniques."

Requests involving matters where there are active state, local, or federal investigations pending, or that are the subject or potential subject of litigation, may not be approved. These include, but are not limited to, requests for after-action assessments or critical incident reviews.

Types of Studies Offered

Organizational Structure/Staffing

This study involves a review of the organizational structure of an agency, including the following:  divisional arrangement of the agency, management staffing patterns, operational span of control, staffing allocations, and workload responsibilities.

Evidence and Property Function

This study involves a review and analysis of an agency’s evidence and property function, including the following:  a review of agency written directives, organization, personnel, training, documentation and forms, safety, security, storage, evidence and property handling procedures, audits, inventories, inspections, and evidence and property disposition and purging.

Patrol Workload and Staffing Allocation

This study involves a quantitative and qualitative review of an agency’s patrol workloads to determine the appropriate number of officers needed to handle calls for service, and also to determine the best deployment of patrol staff for the agency. 

Communications Dispatch Function

This study involves a review and analysis of an agency’s communications/dispatch function, including the following:  a review of dispatch-related workload indicators, training, staffing allocation, scheduling, equipment and technology, and general operations. 

Records Function

This study involves a review and analysis of an agency’s records function, including the following:  a review of records function workload indicators, compliance with applicable law, organizational processing of records, training, staffing allocation, confidentiality and release of information, statistical reporting, records retention and purging, automation of records, and general operations. 

Criminal Investigations Function

This study involves a review of an agency’s criminal investigations function, including the following:  staffing allocation, training, available technology, and case management from determining solvability factors, to case assignment, through appropriate follow-up, until case closure. 

Selected Counseling

Selected counseling consists of formal or informal discussions or conferences between administrators of a department and POST staff in order to provide advice. The counseling may be provided with or without preparation of a formal report. High priority for this service will normally be assigned to meet the special or emergency needs of a law enforcement agency. Selected counseling services may be provided to requesting agencies at no cost.

General Study

A general study includes review and appropriate analysis of the administration, operation and service provided by a local law enforcement department and a written report of the analysis with recommendations. All requests for general studies are subject to approval by POST staff.


An agency head may request any management counseling study by POST that is not addressed in the list of studies previously defined above. The agency may request the study, specifying the scope of the study requested.  This request will be reviewed and considered by the POST Executive Director, who will either approve or deny the request based on staffing availability and topic expertise at POST. 

Unless otherwise requested, recommendations are documented in a written report and submitted to the requesting agency head.

Program Design, Methodology and Timelines

Management Counseling Services are typically offered to agencies on a first come, first served basis.  The following chart identifies key components and milestones that are found in most studies.  Studies may differ significantly in design, methodology, and duration based upon the needs of the requesting agency.  Once a consultant is assigned, they will discuss the proposed plan with the requesting agency before any work begins.


Scoping Session

  • Needs assessment
  • Interview with Head of Agency and relevant administrators
  • Development of scope of study

Data Collection*

  • Surveys, interviews
  • CAD Data
  • Site visits
  • Highly dependent upon the type of study conducted

Report Preparation

  • Draft will be reviewed internally
  • Submitted to agency for review and comment

Final Report

  • Submitted to agency head upon completion of study

Program Costs and Reimbursement

Management Counseling Services are provided free of charge to requesting agencies.

Urgency Exemptions

If an agency experiences a compelling need for a study, the agency may request an urgency exemption.

To request an urgency exemption, the agency head must prepare a letter to the Bureau Chief of the Management Counseling and Projects Bureau providing a clear explanation of the urgent need being experienced.