Benchmarking for Improvement: ISO and ESCI Team Up

How do you demonstrate to the people and community you serve that you’re doing a good job? Do you have a clear, definitive method to show you provide quality service with the resources you have? What data points are appropriate for a true peer review and accurate comparison of your service delivery?

Many fire departments have conducted benchmarking studies for years, but when you review the comparisons, the data points are often measured differently among peers. Providing public services can create dilemmas in determining exactly how those services equate to efficient use of public funds. Comparative analysis, or benchmarking, can establish an accurate picture of the effectiveness of the services.

To offer a powerful method for benchmarking fire departments, Emergency Services Consulting International (ESCI) has partnered with ISO to create the Community Fire Service Performance Review for Structural Fire Protection.

ISO started by modifying its Public Protection Classification (PPC®) grading schedule for fire protection to reflect current industry standards and improved currency. In doing so, they created an opportunity for true fire department peer reviews with more than 32 data points.

The review tool accurately helps departments compare their organizations against industry standards and similar organizations. The tool gives a quality comparison for gauging the effectiveness of your fire services delivery.

Once the review is complete, ESCI sends a report that includes a description of the area being measured, its value to service delivery, an assessment of the organization’s ability to provide that service and points to consider for maintenance or improvement. Chiefs get an accurate picture of their fire department’s performance compared with similar organizations as well as regional and national fire departments.

The Community Fire Service Performance Review for Structural Fire Protection is the next step in ISO’s continuing effort to help communities improve their fire protection services through partnerships and training—and the ESCI report is proof of that goal.


For more information about the community fire service review, email Tom Weber, national director for ISO Community Hazard Mitigation. 


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