Scientific Management in Law Enforcement

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The goal of the scientific management system is" to secure the maximum prosperity for the employer, coupled with the maximum prosperity for each employee," making this approach one that is oriented toward profitability as well as efficiency ("The Principles of Scientific Management"). Fredrick Taylor’s scientific management emphasizes developing routines for carrying out tasks, training workers for these routines, and matching workers with the appropriate job assignments based on skills and abilities. Data and analysis play important roles in the scientific management process. Managers act as decision makers who train workers in the standards developed and provide incentives for boosting organizational output. But the critics of the scientific management accuse Taylor of engineering the humanity out of work.

After an in-depth analysis, the scientific management has some significant problems. The major problem with scientific management is that it does not support workforce diversity. The application of the theory has been criticized as ignoring the individual differences. The most efficient way of working for one person may be inefficient for another. In addition, scientific management also ignores fact that economic interests are not the motivating factor of every individual police officers and police manager. Motivation differs from one another and they are motivated in working for different reasons.

Like any organization, the law enforcement agencies within the state and local agencies must deal with issues of organizational management and the management styles that best allow them to achieve their objectives of crime prevention and criminal apprehension. Philosophically, law enforcement does not operate on the premise of profitability like stated by Fredrick Taylor in scientific management. Majority of managements of the local law enforcement agencies interprets profitability as maximizing efficiency to better serve the community with the...
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