All police officers spend a considerable amount of time doing paperwork. They are required to provide a written report of everything they have done throughout their workday, from writing tickets to patrolling the streets to assisting at emergency situations. The reason for this is so that they will be able to give an accurate and detailed account of a day's work in the event that it is needed for a court case. This is usually the least favourite part of a police officer's job.
Many police officers are assigned a specific area within their district to patrol on a regular basis. The area that they are responsible for often depends on the kind of police officer they are--city, county or state. Patrolling requires an officer to drive around and observe what is going on around him. In some larger agencies, the officers work in pairs just in case the backup is needed. Because their assigned area doesn't change often, it is usually easy for an officer to notice anything out of the ordinary. If he sees something suspicious, he can keep an eye on it or investigate it further if necessary.
Some police officers are responsible for responding to incoming calls. This can require an officer to attend to a wide variety of task, such as directing traffic, administering first aid, breaking up a domestic dispute and investigating a robbery. Many people who become police officers do so because they are attracted to this part of the job, even though it is the most dangerous aspect of the occupation.
Sometimes an officer will be asked to perform some kind of community service. This can include many things, from speaking at a local school about drugs or street safety, to foot-patrolling a community event. Having officers present at events or educating children helps to give the community a sense of safety, while also contributing to the good image of the local police agency.