On the surface, public safety agencies seem to run smoothly, on their own, without any help.
But in reality, they have plenty of help thanks to behind-the-scenes people who make sure these departments have everything they need.
In the case of the Fort Dodge Police Department, one of those forces is Sandy Spencer, the department's secretary.
Spencer recently celebrated her fifth anniversary with the department.
"Before I came here, I worked at the Chamber of Commerce for 11 1/2 years as a program director," she said. "I felt that I needed a change, so I came here."
What attracted her to the position at the Police Department was the aspect of the job.
"I thought it sounded interesting," she said. "There's something different every day."
Spencer's main responsibilities mostly include interacting with the public and making sure the officers have everything they need.
"If people call in to the administrative office, I'm the one who picks up," she said. "I make sure the officers get their time sheets, and I'm in charge of keeping time off records. I also do purchase orders and complete different tasks the chief and the assistant chief need done."
In addition, Spencer also volunteers as the secretary for Webster County Crime Stoppers, and helps organize Santa Cops, an annual event in which police officers shop with local children around the holidays.
She said no two days are exactly the same.
"I usually answer the phones and talk to the public," she said. "Whatever the chief wants done, I'll do it."
But Spencer added what she doesn't do is work with crimes the department is investigating. That responsibility is for the officers.
She said she enjoys working with the police department.
"I love working with the officers and the other departments like the county attorney, clerk's office and Sheriff's Department," she said.
When she's not working, Spencer spends time with family.
"My grandkids keep me busy," she said. "I have seven grandkids, and I go to all their ball games and activities. I'm lucky to have them all here so close to me."