Police Officer Ranks

Every Police Department has a system which outlines Police Officer ranks. This system outlines a chain of command and it ensures that there is a structure or hierarchy in place so that authoritative decisions can be made.

This helps the Police Department deal with many issues that may arise. The Police Department is an organization. Like any organization it must have a leader, and subordinates to help the leader ensure that the organization fulfills its obligations.

Think of different organizations, whether it be public sector or private sector.

In private sectors, for example, maybe the companys' goal is to sell several products and create a large amount of money. In turn, it can grow, expand and make more money. They have to have a strategy/idea on how to get to that point.

These companies have a rank system as well. From CEO's to board members, and down the line.

A Police Department is different because their job is not to make money, but to ensure the safety of the public.

Without a system outlining Police Officer ranks, it would be extremely difficult if not impossible for any department to function efficiently in this task.

Why?

Because the Police, like any organization, consists of people.

And people all have different ideas and thoughts. What one person may consider to be a winning and efficient strategy or tactic may be considered by others to be sub par.

There must be a system in place to ensure that individuals know who they report to. It is a blueprint which shows the organization's authority.

Someone has to take charge, and that individual must rely on others to help him/her. It continues down the line and creates the system.

When people are promoted and attain a higher rank, they achieve a higher pay scale. They also are in a position to make more decisions of consequence.

Because of this, those who attain a higher rank are individuals who have shown good decision making abilities, leadership abilities, good work record, and high moral standards. (At least that's the theory anyhow lol)

Each Police Department will be slightly different from the next, but some departments in the US follow a ranking system designed like this:



Chief of Police or Police Commissioner

Deputy Chief of Police or Deputy Commissioner

Commander

Deputy Inspector

Captain

Lieutenant

Sergeant



Detective or Inspector

Officer

Any Department may have one or more of the above ommitted from their Police Officer rank system, or have another rank substituted in.

Return from Police Officer Ranks to Homepage