FTO Software for Police: Replacing Headaches With Results

By making small training improvements over time, you can experience big results. Learn how FTO software can solve the top five problems in police training.

April 29, 2024

Article Highlights

Law enforcement agencies today face new and evolving challenges. From recruitment and retention to officer wellness and morale, it would be natural to feel overwhelmed.

When confronting daunting challenges, however, it’s important to focus on one solution at a time. As the saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day. By making marginal improvements over time, you can get big results.

Dave Brailsford, the former Performance Director of British Cycling, called this strategy “the aggregation of marginal gains” (learn more about this in Atomic Habits). Let’s apply this concept to police training.

If you separated police training into its smallest parts, improved each part by 1% over time, and then put it all together, you would get a drastic increase in performance.

This is what police field training software tries to accomplish. It simplifies and automates every possible aspect of police training, and then aggregates it all into a solution called FTO software.

The result? Not only does it alleviate headaches, it improves training quality and saves time. Now, let’s explore the top challenges in police training and the solutions that combine to deliver big results.

Hard-to-Access Documents

Field training is demanding for FTOs as well as recruits. FTOs often spend hours searching manuals and folders to gather the right materials, information, and policies for training. This reduces the time spent mentoring and engaging with trainees.

The stakes are even higher when there is a lawsuit or Internal Affairs investigation. In these situations, it can take weeks to search filing cabinets, shared drives, personal desktops, etc. for the required documentation. Not to mention, paper forms can be damaged or misplaced.


In contrast, FTO software like PowerReady makes training materials easily accessible via a resource library. Thanks to an integration with PowerPolicy, skills can be linked to policies and mission-critical documents. That means trainers spend less time searching for resources and more time mentoring recruits.

Police FTO software helps with IA investigations too. PowerReady comes with a filter function that allows administrators to quickly and easily find the reports and documentation they need. With just a few clicks, agencies can prove the proper training was provided, completed, and acknowledged.

Limited Visibility: Trainees

Few agencies have a system for keeping tabs on trainee progress. At best it’s an infrequent, manual process where leaders ask trainers for an update and then wait while they consult past reports, evaluations, and checklists. At worst it’s limited to sporadic updates in the hallway.

Although trainers usually know how their trainees are doing, they don’t have an easy way to measure progress over time or manage next steps. And more often than not, they don’t have a centralized, organized location for storing training materials.

As a result, agency leaders and trainers may not know there’s an issue until it becomes a problem. At that point, all they can do is react to the situation and try to minimize the damage. This creates a reactive approach to problem-solving that increases liability.


Police FTO software like PowerReady addresses each of these problems with solutions designed for leaders and FTOs.

Thanks to the Trainee Dashboard, administrators get a snapshot of how trainees are progressing. At a glance you can see what is going well and where the trainee may be struggling. From there with a single click you can access reports and address any issues.

With our FTO software, you can customize and automate alerts for various trainee metrics, report deadlines, and more. This provides confidence that all recruits are on track for success.

Poor Visibility: FTOs

The quality of your training comes down to your program and your FTOs. When mistakes can lead to lawsuits and investigations, early visibility is everything.

Unfortunately, most agencies don’t have the ability to evaluate their trainers. Without transparency, agency leaders can’t be proactive or preventative. It means one bad FTO could train several recruits poorly before he/she is identified as the root issue.


PowerReady, the leading FTO software for law enforcement, lets you track key performance metrics for trainees and trainers via automated reports. View trainer performance by phase, by trainee, and by skill to understand the real output of each trainer.

Ready to cultivate a culture of excellence? With the data insights from police FTO software, you can help trainers improve, assign trainees based on an FTO’s strengths, and make data-informed decisions.

Inaccurate or Unfair Reporting

In addition to their own workload, FTOs have to complete daily reports for their trainees. This often takes hours of overtime at the end of every shift. Field training officers may be the best of the best, but anyone is susceptible to burnout given enough work.

Not only that, it’s almost impossible to remember every detail at the end of a long day, leading to less accurate reporting and the potential for recency bias. For example, if a trainee performed well all day but made a frustrating mistake in the final hour of their shift, recency bias could color the FTOs daily report.

It’s worth noting that recency bias can occur subconsciously. It’s usually not a conscious or intentional decision.


PowerReady lets FTOs complete reporting in the field, in the moment, when their memory is fresh and accurate. The result? Trainers spend less time on paperwork and turn in reports that are more accurate and more fair.

Lack of Customization

Most police FTO software lacks customization options, which means agencies have to conform their training processes to the software. Agency leaders may have to submit support tickets to make the forms fit their needs, which adds time to an already busy schedule.

Let’s say that a police department follows a modified version of the San Jose model like CA Post or Kellams. Very few FTO software solutions support more than 1–2 program types, making it difficult for agencies who may be using a different model. In the example above, the agency may have to adapt its training programs to whatever the software provides, likely a basic version of the San Jose model.


In contrast, you need police field training software that conforms to your training processes. PowerReady supports many different programs used by law enforcement (San Jose, Kellams, Reno/PTO, Narrative, and more). Our pre-loaded templates make tracking and managing your training easy, whether it’s field training or on-the-job training for a new supervisor role. Simply choose your program and get started.

With PowerReady, you can easily configure forms to fit your agency’s unique needs. Our user-friendly software allows you to build what you need, when you need it, without requiring assistance from Support or IT.

The Aggregation of Marginal Gains

PowerReady is an FTO software built for the needs of law enforcement. You could break down agency training into its smallest parts and improve each part by 1% over the course of several years. You could do that yourself, or you could learn how PowerReady has already done it for you.

In an era when law enforcement faces big challenges, are you interested in experiencing the aggregation of marginal gains?

Book a no-obligation demo today to learn how PowerReady can help your agency. Not ready for a demo? No problem. Fill out the form below to schedule a consultation.

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