113 – Planning & Research

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I. Purpose

Planning is the foundation of the decision-making process in an organization. Through the efficiency of management, monitoring, reporting, and the effective communication of the organization’s vision, the goals and objectives of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) will be achieved.

II. Policy

It is the policy of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office to set goals and have obtainable objectives. It is crucial that all employees of the agency have knowledge of these goals to allow them the opportunity to achieve and accomplish these objectives.

III. Responsibility

The Sheriff’s command staff is responsible for the administration of planning and research within the HCSO. Through the coordinated efforts of all bureau commanders, responsibilities will include:

A. Development of Goals and Objectives

1. The agency shall formulate and annually update its written goals and objectives for the agency, as a whole, and for each major bureau within the agency prior to budget submission.

2. This plan will be referred to as the Multi-year Plan. The plan shall include the following to determine its goals and objectives.

a) Preparation and review of administrative studies of management problems and concerns,

b) Management of fiscal activities and budget preparation,

c) Workload Assessment

The purpose of the workload assessment is to encourage the equalization of individual workloads among and within the department’s organizational components to increase efficiency and effectiveness. This process allows the department to determine the overall number of personnel required to fulfill its objectives.

1. The Bureau Commander will complete the workload assessment every four years.

2. The assessment will be based on the nature or number of a particular tasks and its complexity, location, and time required for completion. The assessment will include a conclusion and recommendations for the distribution of the assessment.

3. The assessment will be completed and submitted to the Sheriff by March 1st of the designated year.

d) Analysis of information, statistics, and reports on HCSO activities to determine service needs, availability of resources, and whether existing programs meet the needs of the public, and

e) Analytical reports that shall be distributed to the affected bureaus and divisions to assist in providing an appropriate response to community needs.

3. Each objective may have a number of ancillary objectives, which if attained, contribute to the overall accomplishment of the agency’s mission.

4. To effectively establish a set of goals and objectives, the agency must have input from its members. It is important to include members of the agency as part of the overall process of establishing and achieving the established goals and objectives.

B. The Sheriff should conduct quarterly staff meetings with the Chief Deputy, Commanders and other established personnel (Captains) to set and review current goals and objectives.

C. Bureau Commanders (Majors) will meet monthly with their Captains to review the goals and objectives. This allows for the opportunity to address concerns and suggestions from its members to better achieve the goals and objectives.

D. Establishment of a Strategic Planning Committee.

E. The agency’s goals and objectives shall consist of the following:

1. Establish a level of service that is consistent with the needs of the community.

2. Establish and maintain cost effective use of employees, facilities, equipment, and other resources.

3. A platform for managing the agency that will improve its level of service to the organization, employees, and the public.

4. A commitment to make these goals and objectives available to the agency’s personnel to help in obtaining and achieving these goals.

IV. Review and Evaluation

A. The goals and objectives shall be reviewed annually and updated as needed by the Strategic Planning Committee.

1. The Sheriff and command staff are responsible for evaluating the progress made toward obtaining and achieving the stated goals and objectives for the agency and bureaus.

2. This evaluation should be completed prior to the fiscal budget year to ensure the agency receives proper funding in their request.

B. The evaluation process should be as follows:

1.  Review original stated goals and objectives.

2.  Determine if the goals and objectives formulated will result in a successful

 outcome and if they are effectively implemented.

3.  Eliminate or revise those goals and objectives that are not obtainable or

unlikely successful.

C. Document the review and evaluation in a written report and submit to the Sheriff or his/her designee for review.


This policy has been revised on the below listed dates:

April 21, 2009

February 18, 2021

December 28, 2021

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