SHRM_TL_3.16.18

Staffing & Retention

Available from APCO Intl. Inc.

APCO Project RETAINS (Responsive Efforts To Address Integral Needs in Staffing) provides managers with tools and strategies to increase the effectiveness of their own management practices, thereby improving staffing, retention and employee satisfaction in emergency communications centers throughout the country.

Project RETAINS has two complementary parts – the study of ECC directors and employees and the RETAINS Toolkit 3.0.

Project RETAINS: Staffing and Retention in Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs): A Supplemental Study.

Based on surveys of emergency communications center (ECC) directors and employees throughout the country, this study addresses the chronic problems of understaffing and turnover in the field of emergency communications. The most recent study was commissioned by APCO International and conducted in 2017 by George Mason University’s Center for Social Science Research (CSSR).


Using 2005 and 2009 research as a guide, the 2017 study addressed:

-Current staffing challenges
-Retention rates and analysis of the conditions that affect public safety telecommunicator (PST) retention.
-Organizational commitment and psychological distress reported among PSTs.
-Optimal workload for PSTs.
-The number of units and/or radio channels a PST can effectively handle.
-Use and awareness of new technologies. NEW!
-Virtual and physical consolidation of ECCs. NEW!

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