Performance measurement in The Netherlands police

Performance measurement in The Netherlands police
Performance measurement in The Netherlands police

 Performance measurement in The Netherlands police

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Note: To prepare for this essay please read the required articles that is attached then answer the following questions:

1)Evaluate the findings of the authors in regards to the validity of introducing performance contracts into a branch of government in The Netherlands.

2)Analyse the effectiveness of the performance measurement system discussed in terms of crime and employee satisfaction.

3)Support your argument with evidence from the study and other real examples where possible.

4)Keep in mind this is a public organization and not a business firm.


1)The answer must raise appropriate critical questions.

2)Do include all your references, as per the Harvard Referencing System,

3)Please don’t use Wikipedia web site.

4)I need examples from peer reviewed articles or researches.

5) copy percentage must be 10% or less.

Note: To prepare for this essay please read the required articles that is attached

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Performance measurement in The Netherlands police

The success of performance contracts in managing government operations, especially in the police department, are disputed by the authors, who note that the performance based contracts are informed by political environment and do not represent the ideal approach to enhancing performance. Obvious question that arise are: is the performance contract system sustainable? And what happens when a different political office with varying ideologies comes in? The argument by the authors is well calculated and this can be explained by the fact that government agency operations are influenced highly by the office in place and policies are bound to change with each elected government office. This explains the fear that officials in the police department have that the situation may change with political reasons.

The fact that performance contracts in the Netherlands government is highly politicized leads to a question on whether this system is for the benefit of the citizens or for the government officials. In their argument, Hoogenboezem  and Hoogenboezem (2005, p. 573) quote the Mayor of Beverwijk who notes that the systems will not work to make Netherlands safer while the Mayor of Utrecht is of the opinion that the performance measurement requirements are just a public relations instrument. In support of this argument, it can be established that for any system of performance improvement to work, there must be well set goals and objectives that the organization seeks to achieve as well as well articulated plans on how this will be achieved (Binderkrantz and Christensen, 2009, p. 287-291). Such plans must include assuring employees of what is expected of them as opposed to imposing targets. In the case of Netherlands, it is apparent that there is no clear goal for using performance contracts as it is mostly for the government to remain popular among voters. This means that the measures may not be taken seriously by the executors as observed in the case of the two mayors and this would result to poor performance.

The authors argue that this system makes executing officers feel trapped between achieving specific targets and exercising their personal responsibilities as police experts. This is because as much as they are expected to meet targets, police work is not systematic and there are many random duties that police must execute in enhancing the safety of the nation. These may not necessarily be in the performance contract and this may lead officers to feeling like their efforts are not being fully recognized. This argument is not only valid but it can also be related to studies on motivation and job satisfaction. Binderkrantz and Christensen (2009, p. 270) note that while contracts exist, decisions made by supervisors may often override targets as set in the contract and hence contracts cannot be fully considered complete or precise. It therefore poses a dilemma for employees who find that the extra duties do not feed into their performance outcomes. In a similar argument, Tan, S, & Lau (2012, p. 60-61) introduce the concept of procedural fairness and suggest that in order improve job satisfaction, the organization must make the performance measurement procedures as fair as possible. Gauging police officers based on targets only therefore deviates from this goal.

Imposing targets without proper consideration of the consequences that these are likely to have on the organization’s performance may lead to unintended outcomes as established by Crede et al (2009, p. 247) This is because employees are likely to focus on targets and give little attention to quality of service and they may end up taking up unscrupulous behaviors in a bid to meet their targets. The requirement of police to reach a certain targeted number of fines as explained in this article is not only detrimental to the department’s ability to improve services but it has also led to mistrust among citizens. An example as given by Hoogenboezem and Hoogenboezem  (2009, p. 574-575) is that the police in a bid to meet targets have been forced to give fines even in situations which could have been solved differently.  They note that the public is offended that police officers are more concerned with fine-writing in order to meet their targets and thus neglected the fundamental duty of maintaining security and safety. This phenomena is further explained by Melnik, Petrella and Richez-Battesti (2013, p 1301-1302) who note that organizations must ensure that the performance measures put in place will work as desired to improve treatment outcomes.

The impact of performance systems on the police department can further be analyzed in terms of employee satisfaction. The use of performance contracts has been proved to have both negative and positive impact on employee satisfaction (Dusterhoff, Cunningham and MacGregor, 2014, p. 267). In this case for example, it is apparent that the use of set performance targets does not lead to increased motivation for employees. This is because police work to a significant extent involves prevention of crime; which may often pass without being noticed. Police men may therefore feel like their work is not being recognized or included in the performance management system. This may result in poor performance among the employees as they may feel like they are not being merited based on their actual performance.

Cullen et al (2014, p. 271) question employee adaptability to uncertainty related to change and link this to overall job satisfaction and performance. The dilemma that employees are caught up in is ‘will the changes in the system lead to different expectations and how can one be satisfied with their job if the future is so uncertain?’ This is a major cause of concern in the police department, given that the use of performance contracting is highly political and has been introduced by the government as a means of meeting voter demands. However, what happens once the current administration leaves office? Will the police be subjected to a different performance system with different expectations? Such uncertainty as established by Cullen et al (2014, p. 276) may lead to low job satisfaction and consequently low levels of performance besides high employee turnover. This can only be reverted if the organization constantly offers support to employees that will reduce perceived uncertainty.

Performance contracts may have positive impact on employee performance if they are linked to a reward system as noted by Chomal and Baruah (2014, p. 59). In their research, they establish that employees are likely to be more committed to the organization if there is promise of a reward based on their performance. In the case of Netherlands therefore, it is imperative that the government considers enhancing police officers’ remuneration in order to promote job satisfaction.

In conclusion, the performance measurement system discussed in this paper could either have a positive or negative impact on crime depending on how it is executed. The authors suggest that police work is more than routine; and targets based on fines may lead to a diversion of the police’s core objective of crime prevention. Performance measurement leads employees to focus only on set goals and this means that they do not utilize their full potential which would otherwise lead to better job outcomes. This can be directly translated in the police department where police may work more towards meeting set targets and neglect some of their undocumented roles; thus leading to poorer crime management.

Reference list

Binderkrantz, A, & Christensen, J 2009, ‘Delegation without Agency Loss? The Use of Performance Contracts in Danish Central Government’, Governance, 22, 2, pp. 263-293, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015  Retrieved from

Chomal, N, & Baruah, P 2014, ‘Performance Linked Reward and Job Satisfaction: Banking Sector’, SCMS Journal Of Indian Management, 11, 4, pp. 53-60, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015. Retrieved from

Credé, M, Chernyshenko, O, Bagraim, J, & Sully, M 2009, ‘Contextual Performance and the Job Satisfaction-Dissatisfaction Distinction: Examining Artifacts and Utility’, Human Performance, 22, 3, pp. 246-272, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015. Retrieved from

Cullen, K, Edwards, B, Casper, W, & Gue, K 2014, ‘Employees’ Adaptability and Perceptions of Change-Related Uncertainty: Implications for Perceived Organizational Support, Job Satisfaction, and Performance’, Journal Of Business & Psychology, 29, 2, pp. 269-280, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015. Retrieved from

Dusterhoff, C, Cunningham, J, & MacGregor, J 2014, ‘The Effects of Performance Rating, Leader-Member Exchange, Perceived Utility, and Organizational Justice on Performance Appraisal Satisfaction: Applying a Moral Judgment Perspective’, Journal Of Business Ethics, 119, 2, pp. 265-273, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015. Retrieved from

Melnik, E, Petrella, F, & Richez-Battesti, N 2013, ‘Does the professionalism of management practices in nonprofits and for-profits affect job satisfaction?’, International Journal Of Human Resource Management, 24, 6, pp. 1300-1321, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015. Retrieved from

Tan, S, & Lau, C 2012, ‘The Impact of Performance Measures on Employee Fairness Perceptions, Job Satisfaction and Organisational Commitment’, Journal Of Applied Management Accounting Research, 10, 2, pp. 57-72, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 18 June 2015.

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