HR Book

HR Management in the Forensic Science Laboratory (2018, Academic Press)

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A Critical Resource for Forensic Science Administrators

The strengthening of forensic science is now a public priority at all levels of government.  This book demonstrates why and how today’s forensic science laboratories can elevate their performance by adopting contemporary HR methods as part of a comprehensive approach to leading and empowering forensic science personnel.

Written by John Collins, a renowned expert on forensic laboratory management and a certified HR professional, this book will also help non-forensic administrators and HR managers better understand how forensic science laboratories work, what unique needs they have, and how they can be supported with more skill and creativity.

At a time when forensic science is undergoing a historic and sustained transformation, it will be all the more critical that the people of forensic science be equipped and challenged to meet an entirely new set of demands, and new standards of excellence.

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Published in 2018 by Academic Press

Chapter Outline

Chapter 1:   Forensic Science and the Promise of HR

Chapter 2:   The Story of Forensic Science

Chapter 3:   Crime Scenes and Evidence Categories

Chapter 4:   Evidence Triage and Intake

Chapter 5:   Case Management and Customer Service

Chapter 6:   Special Case Circumstances and Considerations

Chapter 7:   Occupational Outlook

Chapter 8:   Professional Standards and Governance

Chapter 9:   Reporting of Conclusions and the Art of Consulting

Chapter 10:  Core Competencies and Education

Chapter 11:  Job Descriptions and Requirements

Chapter 12:  Recruitment, Evaluation, and Selection

Chapter 13:  Employee Onboarding and Training

Chapter 14:  Organizational Structuring and Work Units

Chapter 15:  Overtime, Flexibility, and Alternative Staffing

Chapter 16:  Health and Safety

Chapter 17:  Physical and Sensory Challenges

Chapter 18:  Mental and Emotional Health

Chapter 19:  Job Compensation and Classification

Chapter 20:  Unions and Collective Bargaining

Chapter 21:  Performance Review and Appraisal

Chapter 22:  Progressive Discipline

Chapter 23:  Malpractice and Misconduct

Chapter 24:  Outside Employment (Moonlighting)

Chapter 25:  Ethics, Integrity, and Independence

Chapter 26:  Accreditation

Chapter 27:  Developing Future Leaders

Chapter 28:  Strategic Positioning

About the Book

Forensic science laboratories make our criminal justice system more fair and reliable.  With over 400 accredited “crime” laboratories in the United States alone, these important but complex organizations staff a workforce of nearly 15,000 employees who use science to support the investigation and adjudication of crimes.  Yet their mythical portrayal in the news and entertainment media disguise a fundamental fact – that forensic science laboratories require a special and carefully delivered brand of HR support. Too often, however, they do not receive it, which means they must do it themselves.  This book comes to their rescue.


Key Features

  • How forensic laboratories work
  • Understanding HR and its purpose
  • Managing operations
  • Accreditation and quality assurance
  • Hiring and retaining the right people
  • Professional responsibility and integrity
  • Developing future talent
  • Compensation and job descriptions
  • Dealing with personnel problems
  • Responding to catastrophe
  • Tracking critical production indicators
  • Using strategy to create a bright future

       John M. Collins MA, SHRM-SCP, Author