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					     PERFORMANCE EVALUATION CRITERIA FOR
          SYRACUSE FIRE DEPARTMENT




                EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT




                      BY: Dale R. Snyder
                 Syracuse City Fire Department
                        Syracuse, Utah




An action research project submitted to the National Fire Academy
          As part of the Executive Fire Officer Program




                         February 2003
Appendices Not Included. Please visit the Learning Resource Center on the Web at
http://www.lrc.dhs.gov/ to learn how to obtain this report in its entirety through
Interlibrary Loan.
                                                                                                     2


                                            ABSTRACT

          The problem was that the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD) operated without a formal

   employee evaluation for the past thirty-seven years. The city had a generic evaluation form;

   however, even that was not utilized by the SFD. The need for an evaluation system was

   evident as a result of the Campbell Organization Survey (COS) (Campbell Organizational

   Survey, 8/1/12/02 Reference Group 17 8 = N, Appendix A).

          The purpose of this applied research project was to develop a performance evaluation

   process for SFD. This evaluation system was used by the city management to determine

   wage adjustments; was used by the supervisor to determine professional development and

   organizational culture; and was used by the employees to assist in individual performance

   goals. Using the research methodology, the action research project answered the following

   questions:

          1. What if any, are the national criteria for a performance evaluation process?

          2. What if any, are the state criteria for a performance evaluation process?

          3. What if any, are the criteria for the performance evaluation process in Syracuse City?

          4. What if any, are the criteria for performance evaluations in a department of the same

             size as Syracuse Fire Department?

          5. What are the performance evaluation criteria for Syracuse Fire Department?

          The procedures used in this action research included literature reviews, phone interviews,

a questionnaire, an employee evaluation, and informal discussions with peer and subordinate

groups.

          The results found that there are no laws mandating evaluations on a national or state

level. Effective criteria for a performance process did not exist for the SFD; this was also the
                                                                                                   3


case in departments of similar demographics. Through this project, performance evaluation

criteria were established.

       The recommendation was that Syracuse City adopts an evaluation process recognizing

the Fair Labor Standard Act, as well as other constitutional rights to privacy documents.

Evaluations would be job specific, unbiased, related to work performed with reduced

subjectivity. It was recommended that the evaluation process outlined in this document be

implemented immediately, using both a top-down and a bottom-up approach, and that this

evaluation process be a continuous component in the management of SFD.

       The researcher also determined that there are no laws mandating evaluations; however,

the researcher cautions that those organizations not conducting evaluations might have potential

liability for not expecting their employees to meet some kind of recognized minimum standard.

There were no specific performance requirements/standards suggested. All factors used should

be based on recognized standards in order to avoid liability and complications of inconsistency.

       Evaluation policies must apply to those in the same job classification. Supervisors

conducting the evaluations need to be trained to do performance evaluations effectively and help

the employees meet the needs of the organization. Performance evaluations must be tied to some

type of reward (normally pay increases) to add value to the program for the employee. It was

recommended that the evaluation process outlined in this document be implemented

immediately, using both a top-down and bottom-up approach, making it a continuous component

in the management of the SFD.
                                                                      4


                         TABLE OF CONTENTS

ABSTRACT………………………………………………………………………………………2

TABLE OF CONTENTS…………………………………………………………………………4

INTRODUCTION………………………………………………………………………………..5

BACKGROUND AND SIGNIFICANCE………………………………………………………..6

LITERATURE REVIEW…...…………………………………………………………………….8

PROCEDURES……..…………………………………………………………………………...22

RESULTS…………………………………………………………………………….………….27

DISCUSSION…………………………………………………………………………………....30

RECOMMENDATIONS………………………………………………………………………..33

REFERENCES…………………………………………………………………………………..38

APPENDIX A: Campbell Organization Survey…………………………………………………40

APPENDIX B: Generic Syracuse City Evaluation Form……………………………………..…41

APPENDIX C: Letter for Demographic Questionaire…………………………………………...42

APPENDIX D: Demographic Questionaire……………………………………………………...43

APPENDIX E: Analysis of Demographic Questionaire ……………………………………..…44

APPENDIX F: Officer Report Card……………………………………………………………..51

APPENDIX G: Analysis of Officer Report Card………………………………………………..52

APPENDIX H: Interview with Deputy Chief Kevin Hansen……………………………………53

APPENDIX I: Interview with Captain DeWayne Hitchcox……………………………………..54

APPENDIX J: Interview with Michael Moyes, City Manager…………………………………..55

APPENDIX K: Standard Operating Procedure (SOP)…………………………………………..56

APPENDIX L: Performance Evaluation………………………………………………………...61
                                                                                                       5


                                        INTRODUCTION

       Syracuse Fire Department (SFD), organized in 1966, appears to run smoothly on the

surface. Yet delving into the dynamics of the organization, it became obvious fire fighters felt

frustrated with a lack of feedback on their professional conduct—there was no written or formal

performance evaluation used. The need for an evaluation was evident when the results of the

Campbell Organization Survey (COS) (Campbell Organizational Survey, 8/1/12/02 Reference

Group 17 8 = N, Appendix A) were returned to the Fire Chief, Dale Snyder. Based on this

survey, the discrepancy came in the area of “Feedback.” The performance appraisal system

appeared to be the area where SFD had the greatest void.

       The city of Syracuse required the city management and fire department administration to

conduct evaluations; however, this process was not being done. The suggested evaluation form

was a generic form to be used for all city employees, i.e., the fire, the police, public works, office

personnel, parks and recreation, planning, and building departments (refer to Appendix B). The

absence of a “fire department specific” evaluation, hindered the development of firefighters,

reduced their productivity, and possibly jeopardized their lives, or at the very least their safety.

Firefighters did not know how they were doing or what they could do better. In thirty-seven

years of operation Syracuse Fire Chiefs have never utilized a formal written evaluation program

on a regular basis.

   The purpose of this action research project is to research national and state criteria for

performance evaluations; to determine the current evaluation process for SFD; to compare the

evaluation process for fire departments with similar demographics; and to establish the criteria

for an effective SFD evaluation process. In order to accomplish this purpose, an action research

methodology was used. The following questions are answered in the action research paper:
                                                                                                   6


       1.      What if any, are the national criteria for a performance evaluation process?

       2.      What if any, are the state criteria for a performance evaluation process?

       3.      What if any, are the criteria for performance evaluation process in Syracuse City?

       4.      What if any, are the criteria for performance evaluations in departments of the

               same size as Syracuse Fire Department?

       5.      What are the performance evaluation criteria for Syracuse Fire Department?

Using the results of this action research project, SFD will implement an employee performance

evaluation program that will meet the required criteria functioning as a tool to assist in

professional development and personal growth.

                             BACKGROUND & SIGNIFICANCE

       The Syracuse Fire Department (SFD) is a combination fire department with four full-time

employees and twenty-six part-time employees. The fire station is staffed 24 hours a day, 365

days a year with three people (using part-time and full-time staffing). Services provided by SFD

include both fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS), serving a total population of

approximately 20,000 people. The SFD has not used a job performance evaluation process since

it was organized in 1966. A requirement for employee performance evaluations has existed in

both the City of Syracuse and in the fire department. In spite of this, the city’s evaluation system

has not been utilized by the SFD. Syracuse City uses a one page, very simple generic evaluation

form containing only twenty-two areas and a rating scale using six categories ranging from

“Outstanding” to “Needs Improvement.” Very little room was provided for goal setting, notes,

and comments (refer to Appendix B).

       As part of an Executive Fire Officer Program (EFOP) that Fire Chief Snyder attended at

the National Fire Academy (NFA) in August 2002, a Campbell Organizational Survey (COS)
                                                                                                         7


(Appendix A) was completed by the Fire Chief and a cross section of the fire department

members. This organizational survey identified that the SFD does not have a good performance

appraisal system in place. The Chief, Deputy Chief, and even more importantly the fire fighters,

have also recognized this as a problem. This problem presents itself as anxiety among the ranks

of not knowing how they are doing or what is expected of them. This COS survey identified the

need for the development of a performance criteria process which is the focus of this research

paper. A strong employee performance evaluation process will help with decisions regarding

pay, promotions, discipline, transfers, training, and employee development. It will improve

motivation and productivity, as well as assist in career development. The firefighter is the

greatest asset in the fire service. Training, equipment, salaries, and benefits are a direct result of

taxpayer support. A satisfied, healthy, motivated employee ultimately costs the organization less

money by saving on such things as turnover, illness, and injuries.

        The evaluation process is critical as the SFD continues to grow and develop. The

“professional hat” being worn by the full-time firefighters requires a formal approach to their

career goals. Had this lack of in-depth evaluation been allowed to continue, the problems would

have been evidenced in the absence of professional initiative and individual motivation. This

process also requires supervisors to observe employees at all times—hence making the

supervisor more effective. An evaluation process will help direct the fire department

administration in determining professional development, assisting in labor relations, and

managing the organizational culture.

        This action research supports the United States Fire Association (USFA) operational

objective to “reduce the loss of life from fire of firefighters.” It is important to evaluate fire

fighters using job specific evaluations. The feedback they receive will help maintain discipline,
                                                                                                   8


encourage participation, promote educational pursuits, and foster ownership in their careers. All

these factors are critical in emergency response situations to maintain firefighter safety.

                                    LITERATURE REVIEW

       The intent of this literature review is to provide background information, sufficient

enough to develop an employee performance evaluation that can be used for the Syracuse Fire

Department (SFD). The first step in this process was to search for recommend guidelines based

on national standards. In attempting to implement change, it is important to have researched-

based criteria to justify the change.

National

   In researching national guidelines for evaluation of firefighters, three key areas emerged:

fitness/medical, tactical competency (skills that should be evaluated at a training center), and

yearly performance evaluations.

   The first area deals with medical and physical fitness. According to National Fire Protection

Association (NFPA), Standard 1582: Medical Requirements for Fire Fighters and Information

for Fire Department Physicians

       1-2.1 The purpose of this standard shall be to specify minimum medical requirements

       for candidates and current members. It also shall provide other information regarding

       fire department activities that assist the department’s physician in providing proper

       medical support for members.

       1-2.2 The implementation of the medical requirements outlined in this standard shall

       help ensure that candidates and current members are medically capable of performing

       their required duties and shall help to reduce the risk of occupational injuries and

       illnesses (NFPA 1582, 2000).
                                                                                                  9


An example of the physical demands on firefighters comes from Managing Fire Services (Bryan

& Picard (Eds.), 1979). It states:

        “Each department has different job-related performance standards, and these should be

       judged on the basis of local job requirements. A general guideline would be to lift,

       carry, and drag up to 150 pounds of equipment and have the stamina to run one and a

       half miles in twelve minutes. A specific job requirements would be to lift, carry and

       raise a twenty-four foot extension ladder….Fire company members in good physical

       condition are generally expected to perform with concentrated effort in a hazardous

       environment for a maximum of thirty minutes without relief” (p. 224-225).

Obviously, a physical component needs to come into play while doing performance evaluations

in the fire service due to the expected job performance criteria. “When a physical component is

added into an evaluation process it must be based on the job-related skills, knowledge, and

abilities for that specific job behavior/discipline” (Bryan & Picard (Eds.), 1979, p. 324).

       SFD has an effective working document on medical evaluations; therefore, medical and

physical fitness will not be addressed in further detail.

       The second area covers evaluations on fire ground performance or tactical competencies.

Firefighter job performance requirements or skills are found in the National Fire Protection

Association (NFPA) 1001 issued by the Standards Council on January 14, 1999, with an effective

date of February 3rd. NFPA 1001 states that “fire fighter candidates shall meet the general

knowledge and skills requirements, and the job performance requirements” (NFPA 1001, p. 1, 1-

3.5, 1999). This edition of NFPA 1001 was approved as an American National Standard on

August 15, 1997. NFPA 1001 goes into great detail, such as the fire fighter is required to

“operate portable fire extinguishers, approach fire with portable fire extinguisher, select an
                                                                                                     10


appropriate extinguisher” (NFPA 1001, p. 1001-9, ch. 3-3.15) or be able to “deploy and operate

an attack line; remove flooring, ceiling, and wall components to expose void spaces without

compromising structural integrity; apply water for maximum effectiveness (NFPA 1001 p.1001-

8 ch. 3-3.12). The International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) recognized the need to hire

firefighters who were physically capable of performing the job to ensure success in the fire

service career. These skills can be evaluated through structured agility tests such as the

Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) which might be given for hiring candidate fire fighters

(IAFF, 2003).

   Other fire department related position requirements could also be found in the NFPA

Standards such as Fire Apparatus Driver/Operator performance qualifications found in NFPA

1002, which went into effect October 25, 2000. Fire Officer performance qualifications can be

found in NFPA 1021, with an effective date of August 15, 1997. Other NFPA Standards go into

similar detail regarding performance in a variety of fire service competencies. Individual fire

departments may add to these performance criteria, but are not allowed to fall short of these

NFPA standards without the risk of legal and safety liabilities. It is not the intent of this research

project to go into detail of what each job description is or how detailed it should be, but to point

out where these standards are located. They must be used as part of the performance evaluation

process, according to the job that is expected to be performed (NFPA Standards 1001, 1002,

1021).

         The third area of focus is yearly performance evaluations. Unfortunately, the researcher

could not locate a specific national guideline. There are many articles written about performance

evaluations in the private sector, as well as some articles that are fire-service specific.
                                                                                                     11


Following are several literature reviews dealing with performance evaluations. Each one was

helpful to form the "big picture” of what performance evaluations for SFD should look like.

   In a special report title Handbook of Job Proficiency Criteria (1973) prepared by the Ohio

Department of State Personnel (ODSP), the group looked at different ways to evaluate job

performance and assess a worker’s effectiveness in his/her career. To properly evaluate

someone, the evaluator must have a life long picture of the employee’s work habits. A life-long

picture gives a track history of the overall development of the employee, enabling the employer

or evaluator to find trends in behavior development. It can also be used to set long range goals

covering the duration of the employee’s career. This process would be the most effective method

of evaluation; however, many employees change jobs or supervisors change administrative

duties. The process is not practical (ODSP, 1973).

   A substitute for the life-long picture is used which is called the “practical criterion.” Chief

Ronny Coleman (June 1989) states: “In the business world, they have a simple adage: ‘What gets

measured gets done.’ It follows that the most effective performance we have in the fire service

are those activities that we measure and keep track of on a regular basis, determining whether or

not we are improving, maintaining the status quo or losing ground” (p. 20). The Ohio

Department of State Personnel (1973) did extensive research in the area of employee

performance evaluations. They identified three criteria: relevance to the job, reliability of the

evaluation, and practicality in relation to human capabilities. These three areas must contain a

balance. Following, is further explanation of these terms and their connections to fire service.

   Relevance pertains to the job description according to knowledge and skill of the employee.

(ODSP, 1973). In the publication, Managing Fire Service, “An effective performance appraisal

system has most of the following characteristics:
                                                                                                   12


   1.         The system is based on a job analysis.

   2.         The purpose of the system is clearly defined.

   3.         The system is based on job-related behavior and clearly defined performance

              standards.

   4.         Appraisals are conducted on an ongoing basis.

   5.         Appraisers receive extensive training in the use of appraisal techniques and in

              counseling employees.

   6.         Provision is made for appraisal discussion and positive feedback. Performance

              strengths and weaknesses are clearly spelled out along with a clear plan of action

              of what is needed to correct faults and improve performance.

   7.         There is a clear link between good performance and a reward system” (Coleman

              and Granito, (Eds.) 1988).

        In Managing Fire Services, Coleman and Granito (Eds.), (1988) state “Once a firefighter

is hired, he or she must be continually evaluated and given feedback about performance. Few

personnel topics receive more attention than performance appraisal systems, which are usually

the basis for decisions concerning pay, promotions, discipline, transfers, training, and employee

development” (p. 272). In developing the appraisal system, there are several modes for

evaluation.

   1. Narrative or essay appraisal system consists of written statements answered by the

   employee. These may show strengths, weakness, and potential for development. This

   process often lacks in quantified information and depends on the writer’s ability to

   communicate effectively in writing. It does offer an opportunity for two-way exchange.
                                                                                                 13


2. Graphic rating scales or report card rating system uses a set of statements relating to the

employee’s job description with a number/grade value given to each item on the evaluation

form. Areas for evaluation could include: attitude towards job, appearance and dress code,

cooperation, etc. The drawbacks of this system include ambiguous terms used, subjective

evaluations, and little feedback provided. There is usually an area for written comments;

however, evaluators tend to give satisfactory marks in order to avoid having to write

comments.

3. Forced-choice systems are another evaluation system. This is not used as frequently as the

written and graphic system. In this system there are a set of statements the evaluator applies

to the employee. The evaluator will not know if the statement shows the employee in a

favorable or unfavorable light; the statement simply indicates the best descriptor of the

employee. A trained specialist then puts a numerical value to the statement to create a

performance rating. This process can be costly and does not provide adequate feed back for

the employee.

4. Behaviorally anchored rating scales use a bank of statements developed by others who are

successful in that field. A numerical value is attached to each statement, then the employees

are evaluated by how often they engage in each behavior. This evaluation model is expensive

and takes a lot of time. It also falls short of evaluating jobs that require a decision and

judgment process.

5. Critical incident-based systems have the employee and the supervisor jointly decide the

critical jobs to be evaluated and the numerical value placed on their performance. Under this

system employees can be evaluated comparatively to others on their level doing the same

job. Again this process is time-consuming and costly (Coleman and Granito (Eds.), 1988).
                                                                                                   14


Self evaluation and peer reviews are other avenues of assessment to consider in the overall

performance evaluation.

   Once the evaluations are completed, the next step includes goal setting. Employees should be

required to set individual performance objectives during the evaluation time period, so the

evaluation process is directed toward one individual and not the group as a whole. This

management technique is better known as Management by Objective (MBO) (Bryan and Picard

(Eds.), 1979).

   Another source of nationally recognized fire service performance requirements can be found

in a variety of International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA) manuals. The Fire

Department Company Officer (1989), which addresses job performance requirements, is only

one of 336 publications IFSTA provides to select evaluation criteria from. These manuals are not

to be considered law, but can be used as a reference source for fire departments to set their own

standards.

   Evaluation reliability is how well the criteria stands up over the test of time. To get closer to

that life long picture of a person’s work habits, there must be a consistency in the performance

evaluation process. Because of the subjectivity of evaluation, supervisors need to be trained to

evaluate everyone the same, and the evaluation process needs to be consistent from one

supervisor to another (ODSP, 1973).

   Performance evaluations should be done every six to twelve months with supporting

recorded facts. An incident file should be developed and maintained for all employees, from the

fire chief down to the entry—level firefighters. To ensure the best possible evaluation, appraisal

guidelines should be read/reviewed by the employee and the supervisor before each evaluation is

preformed. Another suggestion to protect the integrity of the evaluation process includes
                                                                                                      15


evaluator training. “. . . the raters should be periodically trained and evaluated in appraising an

employee’s performance” (Bryan and Picard (Eds.), 1979, p. 331). The suggestion is even made

to use multiple raters when possible. Evaluation frequency varies, but Bryan and Picard (Eds.)

(1979), suggest appraisal periods be six months to one year apart.

       In the fire service, the process used will depend on the employee who is being evaluated

and the duty they are expected to perform. In the book, Local Government Personnel

Administration, the following objectives are suggested when doing fire employee appraisals:

   ♦ “To provide feedback to the management and the fire fighter regarding compliance to

       rules and expectations

   ♦ To provide guidance towards an employee’s professional development

   ♦ To discover special talents that personnel might have that may be used by

       management for special assignment positions

   ♦ To justify compensation or position adjustments

   ♦ To foster a management by objective program” (Crouch (Ed.), 1976, p. 264-265)

   Practicality in evaluations presents itself in the day-to-day routines experienced by the

employees. People do make mistakes and are limited to human capabilities. The employer must

be flexible in developing methods to reduce cost of the evaluation process while increasing

production of the employee. If close attention is not given to balancing production versus cost,

the good will of the employees will be exhausted (ODSP, 1973).

   Legal considerations play a big part when establishing an employee performance evaluation

criterion. Attention needs to be paid in the area of discrimination. Equal opportunity laws seek

to employ and treat fairly all minority groups. It is important to walk that fine line of affirmative

action and reverse discrimination in areas such as hiring, giving assignments, discipline, and
                                                                                                       16


promotion procedures. In Managing Fire Services, Bryan and Picard (Eds.) (1979), dedicate an

entire chapter to civil rights issues/law which are applicable to this project. This is driven home

with the case of University of California v. Bakke (46 U.S.L.W. 4896 [1978]). These affirmative

action laws are supported by Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866; The Fourteenth

Amendment to the Constitution; and the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by

the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972. Civil Rights Title VII prohibits any

discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, weight, height, or national origin in all

employment practices including hiring, promotion, firing, compensation, and other conditions of

employment. In 1964, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was

established to investigate violations of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. These guidelines became

applicable to the public in 1972. Employee performance evaluations need to fall under these

guidelines. In 1972, The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission required that any

measurement used to separate employees must be valid and fairly administered (Coleman and

Granito (Eds.), 1988). This is why the evaluation tools must be focused on the requirements of

the job and not the personality of the employee.

   The important issue to remember is that every employee in the same job classification is

judged the same. The acceptable standards used must apply to the employee’s ability to

accomplish specific tasks that are required to perform their jobs (IFSTA, 1989).

State

   The second step in determining the criteria for a performance evaluation process for SFD was

to find out what if any, are the state criteria for a performance evaluation process. In the search

for this information, the first person the researcher contacted was Michael Moyes, the Syracuse

City Manager. He suggested that the best contact for advice concerning evaluation requirements
                                                                                                     17


on a state level would be Craig Bott, an attorney for the Utah Local Government and Trust. The

researcher contacted Mr. Bott by phone on January 3, 2003. Mr. Bott was questioned as to the

state requirements pertaining to the development and implementation of employee performance

evaluations. He stated that there are no state requirements other than those imposed by the

federal guidelines, such as Constitutional Rights. To further search for an answer, Mr. Bott

suggested the researcher contact the State Fire Certification Council for more information in the

areas of physical fitness and training requirements (Bott, phone interview, 01/03/03).

   Allen Joes, the Certification and Testing Manager of the Utah Fire and Rescue Academy

(UFRA) was contacted by phone on January 15, 2003. Mr. Joes currently serves on the Board of

Directors of the Utah Certification Council for Firefighters. The question presented to Mr. Joes

was: are there any state requirements pertaining to performance evaluation for the fire service in

the areas of physical fitness and/or training? He stated that there were no state requirements

imposed by the UFRA pertaining to physical fitness or training. “As a result of the large

differences in department demographics throughout the state, it would not be practical and/or fair

to individual departments to implement such requirements.” Mr. Joes stated that there are NFPA

standards that can and should be used, but it is up to each department to implement the standards

that are appropriate for their individual department needs, budgets, and staffing abilities (Joes,

phone interview, 01/15/03).

Syracuse City

   The third step in determining the criteria for a performance evaluation process for SFD was

to find out what was required within Syracuse City. Syracuse City requires a review of the

performance evaluation take place annually between each employee and their supervisor. This

should be done in a manner that will ensure fair treatment and show objectivity towards the
                                                                                                 18


employee’s performance. Syracuse City requires goal setting using clearly defined, measurable

objectives to enhance employee improvement throughout the year. Goals should be within the

confines of the job description using supervisor support. Periodical discussions between the

employee and the supervisor should be held throughout the year to discuss performance and

eliminate deficiencies. Under no circumstances are employees allowed to prepare their own

performance evaluation; this is the responsibility of the employee’s supervisor. Employees have

the right to prepare written comments to accompany their evaluations if they feel it necessary

(Syracuse City Corporation, 2000).

   A rating using a scale of “Unsatisfactory, Below Standard, Standard, Above Standard, and

Outstanding” is used. Each of these terms has a self-explanatory definition. Probationary

employees will have two evaluations within their probationary period. Permanent employees will

be evaluated annually on or before the first day of July. “Although a salary adjustment never

automatically follows a performance evaluation, the performance evaluation will be included as

a component of any further compensation increase” (Syracuse City Corporation, 2000, p. 52).

Similar Demographics

   The fourth step in determining the criteria for a performance evaluation process for SFD was

to find out what criteria was used by fire departments with the same subcultures (full-time/part-

time) as SFD. A one-page questionnaire was developed and sent to all the fire departments

within the state of Utah. Because of the diverse demographics of the fire departments, the

decision to include all departments in the initial questionnaire allowed for the researcher to

disaggregate the data after the questionnaire was returned. (A copy of this questionnaire can be

found in Appendix D.) Only 23 fire departments out of the 261 departments who were asked to

participate in the survey responded. Out of those who responded, 13 were chosen for analysis
                                                                                                   19


based on their similarity in full-time/part-time (combination) firefighters. These subcultures

present a unique challenge in trying to augment performance evaluations. From the

questionnaire findings analyzed, it became obvious that departments with part-time firefighters

(in some department they are referred to as volunteers), were not using a performance evaluation

due to the fact that the firefighters were not considered “career firefighters.” Some departments

were beginning to use an evaluation process, whereas others were reevaluating their evaluation

process. (See Appendix D for the survey and Appendix E for the compilation of the results.)

   In Fire Rescue Magazine (October 2002), a popular column is “Nozzlehead.” In this edition,

a member of a volunteer fire department in Virginia, expressed his frustrations with his

department. The reply suggested instituting an “officer report card” to measure quality training,

policy/procedures, responsibility, communication, tactical tasks, concern for safety/equipment,

and honesty. Because the majority of SFD firefighters are part-time/volunteer, and the ones who

are full-time have been in their position less than a year, this officer report card was used to

collect data for evaluation (refer to Appendix F).

Syracuse Fire Department

   The fifth and final step was to determine performance evaluation criteria’s for the SFD. At

the time this project started the SFD, had no formal performance evaluation in use. The City of

Syracuse has a performance evaluation program in place, but it fell short of what is needed by

the fire department. The city’s evaluation form is a generic form designed for citywide use

(Appendix B). This evaluation form, along with the requirements found in the Personnel Policy

Manual, had not been used by the fire department.

   In an effort to investigate past procedures, the researcher interviewed two employees who

had been with SFD longer than five years. Within that time period, they have served under two
                                                                                                 20


different chiefs. The first interview was conducted with Kevin Hansen, Deputy Chief (Appendix

H). He has been with the department for 11 ½ years. During that time, he has never been

evaluated as a firefighter. Deputy Hansen would welcome an evaluation process that

incorporated professional goals as a way to promote progress for self and for the organization

(Hansen, personal interview, 01/20/03). The second interview was conducted with Captain

DeWayne Hitchcox, a Syracuse City Firefighter for eight years (Appendix I). He also indicated

Syracuse City has never evaluated him. He would also like to see yearly evaluations with an

emphasis on improvement. Captain Hitchcox felt evaluations could be used in the disciplinary

process to address the problem (such as attendance on drill night) and then to make a plan of

action to alleviate the problem (Hitchcox, personal interview, 01/24/03).

   Another important person in this action research was the city manager. The city manager has

the power to approve or deny a policy change. On January 20, 2003 a personal interview was

conducted with Michael Moyes, the Syracuse City Manager, in an effort to determine the course

of action for SFD. Based on the interview (see Appendix J), it was apparent that the city would

support a SFD performance evaluation as long as the city manager gave prior approval to the

document, and if he was allowed to review and give input on the completed evaluations. As the

numbers man in the city, he had some reservations of the logistics of a performance process that

evaluated from the top-down and the bottom-up, yet he was willing to give the Fire Chief an

opportunity to implement this process.

Summary

       The intent of this research project was to provide the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD)

with the background information sufficient to construct a performance evaluation process that

will develop employees, increase productivity and avoid litigation. Evaluations can be divided
                                                                                                     21


into three areas 1) medical requirements, 2) physical performance of job related tasks, and 3) and

yearly performance evaluations system. The focus of this project was on the last category, yearly

performance evaluations. After making the decision of which type of performance evaluation

system will be used, the performance evaluation needs to address the following three areas:

relevance to the job, reliability of the criteria “standing the test of time,” and practicality in

relation to human capabilities (ODSP, 1973).

        The legal aspects of an evaluation process should be approached with caution.

Evaluators should be cognizant of an employee’s constitutional rights. Evaluators can avoid legal

pitfalls by focusing on job-related skills and performances. As suggested by Mr. Bott, attorney

for the Utah Local Government and Trust, evaluators need to be aware of federal guidelines

dealing with an individual’s constitutional rights, such as the Fair Labor Standard Act. It is also

imperative that everyone under the same job description be evaluated with the same criteria.

There are no federal requirements stating that an evaluation needs to be done, although there are

nationally recognized performance standards that evaluators should use. Mr. Joes, Certification

and Testing Manager of UFRA, suggests using the NFPA Standards according to the department

needs, staffing, and budget capabilities.

        Syracuse City Fire Department, like many other fire departments, has portions of the

three-piece evaluation in place. Fitness/medical standards have been evaluated on a yearly basis

for the past several years; also, tactical competencies are conducted with each certification. The

formal performance evaluation was the focus of this action research paper. In interviews with

Deputy Chief Hansen and Captain Hitchcox, current employees of SFD, it is obvious firefighters

would welcome a formal evaluation process that would recognize and reward “ . . . expected

performances [while helping correct] poor performance [which can] contribute significantly
                                                                                                22


towards improving morale and productivity” (South Davis Fire District Performance Appraisal

Manual, 2000, p. 5). Based on the research conducted on performance evaluations, it is apparent

that an appraiser must have a formal evaluation process with a specific set of criteria for

evaluation of the employee. Much of the criteria from the business world applies to the general

management and day-to-day running of a fire station; however, often the evaluations being used

for city employees do not fit the scope of the fire service. A more in-depth, fire-specific

evaluation needs to be developed and utilized.

                                         PROCEDURES

   The desired outcome of this action research project was to identify a new performance

evaluation process that would provide the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD) with a management

tool to foster professional development, encourage personal improvement, and enhance the

organizational culture within the fire department. The sources used for this action research paper

were chosen to provide research-based criteria to answer the following questions: 1) What if any,

are the national criteria for a performance evaluation process? 2) What if any, are the state

criteria for a performance evaluation process? 3) What if any, are the criteria for the

performance evaluation process in Syracuse City? 4) What if any, are the criteria for

performance evaluations in a department of the same size as Syracuse City Fire Department? 5)

What are the performance evaluation criteria for Syracuse Fire Department?

   As part of an Executive Development course taken at the National Fire Academy in

Emitsburg Maryland, the Syracuse Fire Chief and a cross section of department members

completed questionnaire forms for a Campbell Organizational Survey (COS) (Appendix A).

Results of the COS indicated that the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD) needed an employee

performance evaluation process.
                                                                                                  23


    The purpose of this research paper/project is to identify the criteria for a performance

evaluation process that will meet federal, state, and local requirements. Criteria must also comply

with local best practices for performance evaluations in Davis County and other Utah fire

departments with demographics similar to SFD. The next step was to determine what the criteria

would be for SFD, and then design a performance evaluation process to be presented to the

Syracuse City Manager for approval.

       The first step in this research project was a literature review, using sources from both the

fire service and business community; the researcher considers the legal concerns for the fire

service to be similar to those of the business community. Sources used for the Literature Review

included: the Learning Resource Center (LRC) located on campus at the National Fire Academy

(NFA), local public libraries, Syracuse City reference materials, personal interviews, phone

interviews, a variety of reference books, journals, and the Internet. Pro and con viewpoints from

both public sector and the fire service were used for the review. A list of the text sources include

the following:

       Civil Rights Act of 1964

       Fire Chief Magazine

       Fire Department Company Officer (IFSTA)

       Fire Rescue Magazine

       Handbook of Job Proficiency Criteria: A Glac Research Report

       International Association of Firefighters Website

       Local Government Personnel Administration

       Managing Fire Services, Edition 1

       Managing Fire Service, Edition 2
                                                                                                      24


        NEPA Journals & Standards

        Personnel Policy and Procedures Manual for Syracuse City

        South Davis Fire District Performance Appraisal Manual

        Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary

        The second step was to develop an evaluation performance questionnaire for the fire

departments in Utah (Appendix D). The purpose of the survey was to find departments with part-

time/volunteer and full-time firefighters (combination departments) and analyze what they were

doing with performance evaluations. This was also an opportunity to network with departments

who found themselves in the same position as the SFD.

        The questionnaire was distributed with a letter explaining the project and how to reply

(Appendix C). The instructions for the questionnaire were simple, 1) fill out the evaluation, and

2) fax a copy of the completed evaluation to (801) 779-9365 with a cover sheet identifying their

fire department. After allowing a month for replies to the questionnaire, the results were

analyzed for this project. Fire department names were not included in the tabulation sheet. To

ensure anonymity, departments are listed numerically. A copy of the questionnaire (Appendix

D), letter explaining the project (Appendix C), and analysis of the questionnaire (Appendix E)

are available in this report.

        The third step was the implementation of the “Officer Report Card” (Appendix F). The

idea for the report card came from an article used for the Literature Review (Nozzlehead,

October 2002). The purpose of the “Officer Report Card” was to provide performance feedback

from peers and subordinates in order to establish a starting point for officer goals. Each SFD

officer was evaluated anonymously by his/her subordinates and fellow officers.       The seven

questions used for this survey relate to basic job functions for all officers. This was basically a
                                                                                                    25


bottom-up evaluation. The researcher felt this step was necessary to establish a line of

communication between the firefighters and the officers. This also allowed all firefighters an

opportunity to honestly evaluate the officers without fear of retribution. The Chief was the only

one involved in the compilation of the results. Because 28 different opinions went into the

evaluation, the Chief felt a consensus could be reached by totaling the scores from each officer’s

evaluation. The two lowest scored categories for each officer became the focus for

professional/personal goals. (Analysis of survey Appendix G).

        The fourth step was to develop a continuous performance evaluation plan that will be

used by the SFD taking into consideration job descriptions, performance expectations, personal

development, career development, and legal/fair labor issues. This evaluation process

incorporates a top-down (officers evaluating fire fighters) and a bottom-up approach (fire

fighters evaluating officers) incorporating both the officer report card and the formal evaluation

in employing the research generated by this action research project. This evaluation form is

located in Appendix L. This step also includes the development of a Standard Operating

Procedure (SOP) which can be found in Appendix K.

LIMITATIONS

    Limitations for this research project include the lack of specific information pertaining to the

legal aspects of job performance evaluations. A wide variety of sources were obtained, but very

few ventured into the actual legal requirements. The sources that dealt with legality issues have

roots that tie back to our constitutional rights as citizens in the United States.

    Sending out a questionaire to Utah fire departments limits the response to the questionaire;

however, the researcher felt taking the questionaire out-of-state would be too large for the scope

of this project. Fire departments were then sorted according to their subcultures to align with the
                                                                                                    26


combination department of Syracuse City Fire. Lack of participation from over 80% of the fire

departments limited the value of the quesitonnaire; however, the power in the questionnaire came

from the networking which occurred as other departments became interested in what SFD was

doing and jointly shared their own efforts in the evaluation process.

    Another limitation in the development of an evaluation program involves individualization of

a department based on their needs (i.e., budget, personnel abilities, specialized training needs,

etc). Not all fire departments are created equal with access to the same resources. Evaluation

programs will vary from one department to another.

DEFINITION OF TERMS

Bottom up: evaluations from subordinates

Campbell Organization Survey (COS): a survey generated by the National Fire Academy to

identify areas of deficiency in a fire department

Combination Fire Department: full-time and part-time

Demographics: a statistical area of study with reference to size and density, distribution, and

vital statistics

Emergency Medical Services (EMS): medically trained personnel who respond in an emergency

Fair Labor Standard Act: federal government document establishing rules for employment

Management by Objective (MBO): after an evaluation is completed, the employee sets

individual performance objectives

Officer Report Card: a tool to measure the performance of an officer

Organizational Culture: the integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behavior

ingrained in an organization functioning as a unit to direct the outcome of human behavior

Practical Criterion: evaluating the relevance, reliability, and practicality of an employee
                                                                                                     27


Practicality: a consideration of the daily routines and human dynamics of the employee

Relevance: the knowledge and skills of an employee in relation to their job

Reliability: how well the criteria for evaluations stands the test of time

Subculture: a group within a group distinguishing itself from others within an embracing culture

Tactical Competencies: skills/knowledge needed to perform fire combat

Top Down: evaluations from superiors

                                             RESULTS

   Answers to the research questions are found in the literature review. The research was

sufficient to develop a performance evaluation process for the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD),

achieving the purpose of this research project. The research questions were:

   Research question #1: What if any, are the national criteria for a performance evaluation

process? Based on the findings in this literature review, it is apparent that the business

community and the fire service have the same legal concerns when using performance

evaluations. Different fire departments very in their abilities to conform to nationally set

standards, such as National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) Standards. Non compliance with

these standards may make a fire department subject to litigation if an accident occurred which

could have been prevented had the standard been in place. Although each department has the

option of what standards to follow, there are federal laws they must follow. When developing a

performance evaluation process and performing the evaluation, the employer must respect an

employee’s civil rights. Attention needs to be paid to discrimination issues in the areas of race,

color, religion, sex, weight, height, or national origin. Equal opportunity laws require employers

to treat fairly all minority groups for hiring, promotion, firing, compensation, and other

conditions of employment.
                                                                                                    28


   Both the business world and the fire service have a common interest in goal setting and using

evaluations to drive performance. Some nationally recognized “best practice” standards for the

development of a performance program have also been included in the literature review. It was

included for the benefit of the researcher in furthering the development of a performance

evaluation. No standardized evaluation forms were found for fire departments to adopt to cover

the standards of conduct such as attendance, policy knowledge, dress code, etc. It appears

standards of conduct are a site-based decision for each fire department to determine the criteria

for evaluation and the level of excellence required.

   Research question #2: What if any, are the state criteria for a performance evaluation

process? It was discovered that the best source for information on this subject would be Mr.

Craig Bott, an attorney for the Utah Local Government and Trust. This agency provides

assistance to municipalities regarding legal guidelines including employment issues. Mr. Bott

reconfirmed the importance of civil rights laws and insisted they must be followed. However, he

did maintain that there are no requirements stating that evaluations need to be done or what

should be included in the process. Mr. Bott suggested contacting the Utah State Fire Certification

Council for more information on physical fitness and training requirements.

   Allen Joes the Certification and Testing Manager of the Utah Fire and Rescue Academy

(UFRA) was contacted regarding the physical fitness and training requirement issue. Mr. Joes

stated that there were no state requirements imposed by the UFRA pertaining to physical fitness

or training. Mr. Joes recommendations were to follow the NFPA guidelines.

   It was found that there are no state requirements pertaining to the development and

implementation of a fire fighter performance evaluation process.
                                                                                                  29


        Research question #3: What if any, are the criteria for performance evaluation process in

Syracuse City? In an interview with Mike Moyes (Syracuse City Manager), and referencing the

Syracuse City Personnel Policy Manual (2000), the only performance evaluation is a generic

form used citywide (Appendix B). Syracuse City does require an annual evaluation for each

employee (part-time or full-time). The Personnel Policy Manual (2000) gives instructions on

time frames when the evaluations should be performed, who should do the evaluation, and under

what conditions and guidelines they should be done. These evaluations should also include goal

setting and an open discussion between the employee and the supervisor. Evaluations are

included in the process for compensation increases. The fire department does not have an

evaluation process exclusive of the city. When asked about the development of a new evaluation

process, City Manager Mike Moyes indicated that he is always willing to look at things to make

things better.

    Research question #4: What if any, are the criteria for performance evaluations in

departments of the same size as Syracuse Fire Department? As this action research paper

progressed, it became obvious the researcher was not looking for departments the same size. He

was looking for departments with similar demographics and subcultures (part-time/full-time).

After researching the first three questions for the literature review, a single page survey was

developed and sent out to all 261 fire departments in the state of Utah. It was found that 92% of

the combination (employing both full-time and part-time employees) fire departments that

responded to the survey have an evaluation process in place. Of this 92% combination

departments 66% of them have job specific items included in their evaluation process and are

formatted to match the needs of their fire department. 83% of them have more than one officer

review the evaluation before it is accepted. -
                                                                                                 30


   None (0%) of the responding combination departments have a bottom up evaluation system

in place where firefighters have input for officers. 91% of the responding combination

departments address goals and objectives.

   This survey identifies that evaluations have varied uses focusing on the needs and

development of the firefighters. The benefit from this survey not only comes from the

information given on the survey but the networking and support from many of the other

departments throughout the state.

   Research question #5: What are the performance evaluation criteria for SFD? At the time this

research project started, SFD had no formal performance evaluation process in place. Syracuse

City has an evaluation process in place (appendix B), but it falls short of the SFD needs—and it

has never been used on a regular basis. Two tenure employees of the SFD were interviewed

(Appendix H, I) and expressed a desire for the development and implementation of a fire specific

evaluation process which would include professional goals, personal development, moral

conscience, self improvement, and then a follow-up process.

   Syracuse City Manager Mike Moyes was also interviewed (Appendix J) in an effort to find

out if the City Government would be supportive of a new evaluation process. Mr. Moyes

indicated that he would, if the City Manager gave prior approval to the document. Mr. Moyes

also acknowledged that he had some reservations on the top-down and bottom-up idea, yet he

was still willing to let the Fire Chief implement the process which would benefit the fire

department.

                               DISCUSSION/IMPLICATIONS

       City municipalities demand and need their employees to perform to their highest level

   possible. In order for employees to perform at their highest production level achieving the
                                                                                                31


expectations of their employer, a bridge of information and expectations needs to be built—

this bridge is a comprehensive employee performance evaluation.

   Public employees need to know how they fit into the city’s puzzle of providing the

citizens with the service they pay for and expect. It is important they know what is expected

of them while they are performing their job duties. It is not effective or beneficial to evaluate

someone on jobs they are not expected to perform. For example, a probationary firefighter

should not be expected to command a scene on a structure fire. Evaluations should be job

specific and relate to an employee’s duties and certifications.

    Performance evaluations also give employees the chance to work on correcting

characteristics that don’t fit into the department’s master plan, thus helping to further the

working relationship between the employee and employer. If both sides have identified the

problem and worked up an action plan to alleviate the problem, a positive partnership forms

where the employee feels they can succeed. A well-developed evaluation process will also

lead to increased employee performance. When an employee’s performance is at it’s peek,

this is when the taxpayers are receiving the biggest return for their tax dollar. An employee

gains satisfaction when he/she is recognized for their good performance.

   Putting the employee’s performance in writing, formalizing it by using an established

form, and attaching it the employees permanent file will start to build that “practical

criterion” (ODSP, 1973) which aids in tracking those employees that excel, fall behind, or

maintain status quo.

   SFD has not had an ongoing and effective evaluation for thirty-seven years, which was

brought to light as part the Campbell Organization Survey (COS) (Campbell Organizational

Survey, 8/12/02 reference Group 178=N, Appendix A). This research project aided in the
                                                                                              32


development of an evaluation process that has been presented to and has been approved by

the Syracuse City Government, replacing the current evaluation form (Appendix B). This

evaluation process is job specific and will help fire department employees develop personally

and professionally by receiving feedback and guidance from supervisors. It will also direct

the process of setting goals and establishing objectives. This tool can be used to promote

good employee relations, correct problems, adjust merit increases, determine promotions or

demotions, make corrective actions—overall, aid in the development of the fire department’s

organizational culture. Chief Ronny Coleman (1989) once said “what gets measured gets

done” (p. 20). There is a clear link between good performance and a reward system.

    The final product of the SFD performance evaluation (Appendix L) compares with what

other departments are using. It was discovered however, that one set system will not work

for every fire department. The top-down evaluation method is effective, but if managed

properly through discretion and goal setting, the bottom-up system can help develop

supervisors and provide invaluable feedback. It is important to remember that the evaluation

process should be presented to the employee in a positive note focusing on what the

employee could improve on in the future and not dwelling on what the employee did wrong.

Some of the stresses that come from employees being evaluated can be reduced by having a

clear job description of what that employee is expected to perform. Having a thorough job

description for each position is a win-win situation for both the city and the employee.

   Some national guidelines for evaluating fire department employees includes physical

fitness such as the National Fire Protection Associations 1582 standards on Medical

Requirements for Fire Fighters (NFPA 1582, 2000). This can also be backed up by an

example of physical demands from Managing Fire Services where it states what physical
                                                                                                33


demands fire fighters are expected to perform (Bryan & Picard (Eds.), 1979). Physical fitness

and medical fitness are important factors, but are not the focus of this project. Tactical

competencies (skills measured at the training tower) are also an important component of an

effective evaluation process. These skills are spelled out in nationally recognized standards

such documents as NFPA 1001, 1002, and 1021 (NFPA Standards1001, 1002, 1021).

   Regardless of what we want to put into our evaluation system, we must make sure that

we protect employee’s civil rights, respecting their race, color, religion, sex, weight, height,

and or national origin (title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 1964).

   Yearly performance evaluations are the third key area of employee development. They

must adhere to three basic concepts: relevance to the job, reliability of the evaluation, and

practicality to human capabilities (ODSP, 1073). As a result of this research project, the input

from other departments, and for it’s simplistic design, Syracuse City Fire Department (SFD)

will use a combination of the graphic rating scale, a narrative appraisal system, and a

Management by Objective (MBO) approach in it’s evaluation process (Coleman and Granito

(Eds.), 1988). With the combination of these three methods, SFD employees will have a

better understanding of how they are doing and they will have the tools to encourage them to

strive to meet their goals.

                                   RECOMMENDATIONS

   As a result of the Campbell Organization Survey (COS) taken by the Chief and a cross

section of employees of the Syracuse Fire Department (SFD) and the completion of the

literature review for this project, it is recommended that the SFD immediately implement an

employee performance appraisal program. As part of this action research, an evaluation form

has been developed that meets the national, state and city criteria—functioning as best
                                                                                                34


practices with other fire departments in Utah—using a combination of narrative appraisal,

graphic rating and Managing by Objectives (MBO). This evaluation process will help

develop the employees of the SFD and will aid the city in having their employees perform at

their highest abilities, in turn, giving the citizens of Syracuse the service they expect and

deserve.

    This evaluation process will also help maintain discipline with fire fighters at the station,

on the fire ground, on emergency scenes, and when dealing with the public. If people don’t

know what they are doing wrong, the poor behavior will continue which will eventually

affect someone’s safety or even their life.

    The current evaluation system does not sufficiently meet the needs of the SFD, or the fire

service in general; it leaves little room for supervisor input and goal setting. Evaluations need

to be job specific, spelling out exactly what is expected of the employee. It is a natural

correlation to connect the evaluation with the job description for each position. Under the

current evaluation process for Syracuse City, there is very little in common between the

evaluation form and any given job description. The researcher strongly suggests training

evaluators in this critical process.

    Evaluations should be done at least once a year for full time employees. If employees are

still in their probationary period, then an evaluation should be done after the first six months

and then again at the end of the probation period. The probationary period for Syracuse City

employees is 12 months from the date of hire.

    The researcher suggests that if an employee has an overall standard rating on their

evaluation, they should be given the normal step raise. If the employee’s performance falls

behind the accepted norm, then the step raise should be adjusted accordingly. If an employee
                                                                                             35


receives an overall outstanding evaluation, then the employee should be rewarded above the

normal step raise. Giving a step raise regardless of performance does not provide firefighters

with the encouragement to meet the norm or even to excel. If those who are excelling are not

monetarily or professionally recognized, they will soon discover that doing less work is just

as beneficial. This evaluation system should be broken down into a points system, when an

employee earns extra points then they will receive extra compensation in relation to those

points. If the employee falls short of the average/expected performance rating, they would

receive less compensation.

   The following are recommended steps to implementing this new employee performance

appraisal system.

1. Adjust the evaluation components to meet the needs of the department and match the

   intended job description.

2. Prepare a department policy on who, what, where, when, why, how, the performance

   evaluation process is to be used. This should match the department’s, city’s, state’s, and

   national guidelines. (Refer to the literature review) (Appendix K)

3. Present the documents to the local governing body for approval and then implement the

   process. (A short presentation may help in the explanation and selling of the program. Be

   prepared to answer questions.)

4. Establish the assignments of who will be doing the evaluations for each employee.

   Include all supervisors in this process. This will help the supervisor watch for needed

   improvements or recognize the qualities of the employee throughout the year.

5. Set time frames of when the evaluations are to be completed. An example of this might

   be halfway through and then at the end of the probationary period. These should also be
                                                                                               36


   done on an annual basis. This can be done at the first of the budget year or on the

   hire/promotion date of the employee.

6. Provide training for those who will be performing the evaluations. This will often involve

   all the officers in the organization.

7. Perform the evaluations, this includes:

       A. Have the evaluations prepared in advance to avoid negotiations and persuasion

           toward the supervisor.

       B. Have more than one level of supervisor review the evaluation for content and

           completeness.

       C. Perform the interview with the employee in private, allowing for an open

           discussion.

       D. Allowing the employee to comment in writing any comments they may want to

           add to the evaluation form. (Do not change the evaluation without the second

           level supervisor being involved.)

       E. Help set goals for the employee in the areas where they fall short. Also, look for

           areas where employees can stretch themselves to a higher level of performance.

           Each goal should come with a complete set of objectives of how they will obtain

           that goal and how they will measure the accomplished goal.

8. Establish a reward/punishment system for an effective/poor evaluation. Use salary

   adjustments, promotions, or some other desired objective in the fire department to

   accomplish this.
                                                                                                   37


   9. Create a file for each employee where the evaluations can be confidentially stored. This

       will start to develop that “practical criterion” for the employees. These files should be

       kept in a secure place away from the general staff.

   10. The most important part of any employee performance evaluation process is the

       management’s continual support of the process, with room to let the process evolve to

       meet the changing needs of the department.



The key to any good evaluation system is being objective when completing the evaluation.

Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary (1986) said it best with this definition of objective,

“expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal

feelings, prejudices, or interpretations” (p. 814).
                                                                                                   38


                                              REFERENCES

          Bryan, John L., and Picard, Richard C. (Eds). (1979). Managing fire service (1st ed.).

Washington D.C.: International City Management Association. pp. 24-25, 323-324, 331.

          Coleman, Ronny. (June 1989). Warm fuzzies or gotchas, attaboys or KITA. Fire Chief.

pp. 20.

          Coleman, Ronny J., and Granito, John A. (Eds). (1988) Managing fire service (2nd ed.).

Washington D.C.: International City Management Association. pp. 272-274.

          Civil rights act of 1964. Retrieved February 21, 2003 from the World Wide Web:

http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/vii.html

          Crouch, Winston (ed). (1976). Local government personnel administration. Washington

D.C.: International City Management Association. pp. 264-265.

          International Association of Firefighters (IAFF). (September 6, 2003). The

IAFF/ICHIEF fire service joint labor management candidate physical ability test program

summary. Retrieved September 6, 2000 from the World Wide Web:

http://www.iaff.org/safe/wellness/cpat.html

          International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA). (1989). Fire department

company officer (2nd ed.). Stillwater: Fire Protection Publications.

          Ohio Department of State Personnel. (1973). Handbook of job proficiency criteria: A

glac research report. Ohio: International Personnel Management Association. pp. 5, 20.

          National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). (1999). NFPA 1001: fire fighter

professional qualifications (1997 Edition). NFPA Publications. pp. 1001-0, 1001-8, 1001-9.

          National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). (2000). NFPA 1002: standard on fire

apparatus driver/operator professional qualifications (1998 Edition). NFPA Publications. pp.

1002-1.
                                                                                                39


       National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). (1997). NFPA 1021: standard for fire

officer professional qualifications (1997 Edition). NFPA Publications. pp. 1021-1.

       National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). (2000). NFPA 1582: Medical

requirements for fire fighters and information for fire department physicians (2002 Edition).

NFPA Publications. pp. 1582-5.

       Nozzlehead. (October 2002.) Improving VFD retention and recruitment look in-house;

rein in loose-cannon officers. FireRescue Magazine. pp. 12.

       South Davis Fire District Performance Appraisal Manual (2000). Unpublished

manuscript. pp. 5.

       Syracuse City Cooperation. (2000). Personnel policy procedures manual for syracuse

city. pp. 51-54.

       Technical Committee on Fire Fighter Professional Qualifications. (1997). NFPA 1001

fire fighter professional qualifications (1997 Edition). Los Angles: National Fire

Protection Association.

				
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