The police enterprise structure is typically organized in a hierarchy comprised of units, bureaus, and/or divisions responsible for specific police services, very similar to a business organization chart. In performing those services, the police enterprise is impacted by its internal and external environment as well as the interested parties who have a stake in the performance of the agency.
The external environment may include economic, political, statutory, and regulatory environmental issues to which the police enterprise must respond. To respond effectively, the police enterprise must also have significant awareness of myriad interested parties who are impacted by its services—namely, customers (both internal and external) who include victims, witnesses, investigative leads, government leaders, special interest groups, other police organizations, government departments, prosecutorial agencies, and, yes, the criminal element.
Just as business enterprises must be responsive to the environments in which they operate, the police enterprise must ensure the services and products they deliver meet the requirements resulting from the external environmental impacts and demanded by the requestor or receiver. To facilitate success, the police enterprise structure should abandon the traditional hierarchical “turf” structure and transition to one that is more process-based and collaborative in nature.
This new process-based approach continues to focus on processes that are performed within a work unit, however, the new structure emphasizes the collaborative relationship to other units and their linked activities within the Police Enterprise System. It is the Police Enterprise System of interconnected processes that enhance the performance of the whole organization.