Preventing attrition among women and minority police applicants

Diversifying policing has been a challenge for police agencies, despite their increased efforts to attract qualified candidates. Even when recruiters manage an adequately diverse applicant pool, the dropout rate of candidates throughout the notably long hiring process threatens the representativeness of the applicant pool. Thus, police agencies are eager to examine why applicants – especially women and minority applicants – withdraw from the hiring process to address any common reasons and retain desirable candidates.

To explore reasons for withdrawal, 143 women and minority police applicants who withdrew from the hiring process reported their reason for withdrawal during a telephone interview conducted in the spring and summer of 2016. The primary reasons for applicant attrition, after changing their mind or another personal reason, was finding other employment and the length of the hiring process. Recommendations for policy include increasing communication to applicants, shortening the hiring process and hiring on a continuous basis. Implications are discussed.

This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice following peer review. The version of record "Preventing attrition among women and minority police applicants" is available online at:



Work Title Preventing attrition among women and minority police applicants
Open Access
  1. Jennifer Gibbs
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
  1. Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice
Publication Date December 1, 2020
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
Deposited July 23, 2021




This resource is currently not in any collection.

Work History

Version 1

  • Created
  • Added Manuscript2__withdrawal_reasons__Post-print_for_upload.docx
  • Added Creator Jennifer Gibbs
  • Published
  • Updated
  • Updated