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Kent PEEL 2015

Efficiency

How efficient is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 20/10/2015
Good

HMIC found that Kent Police is well prepared to face its future financial challenges. Through robust financial management and a commitment to continuous improvement, it has continued successfully to reduce its spending and is planning effectively for future financial challenges. It understands demand on its services and matches resources to meet demand. In last year’s value for money inspection programme, which considered how forces had met the challenge of the first spending review period, Kent was judged to be good.

HMIC judges Kent Police to be good. The force is well prepared to face its future financial challenges. Through robust financial management and a commitment to continuous improvement, it has successfully reduced its spending by £49.4m over the last spending review period, balanced its budgets and maintained its services.

Kent has an extensive understanding of demand. It is using this understanding to ensure that it matches resources to demand. There has been some notable work done to review how the force responds to demand and ensures that resources can be consistently targeted at areas of greatest risk to communities.

Kent has developed an operating model known as the Kent Policing Model. This places resources into frontline community policing and is well aligned with current financial and organisational requirements. It enables resources to be directed at meeting the main priorities in the police and crime plan and to respond well to the demands made by the public. Importantly, it is capable of continuing to operate effectively as resources reduce in the short and medium term.

In the long term as the workforce continues to reduce in size, the model will be reliant on the success of the force’s approach to reducing and managing demand in order to continue to police effectively with fewer officers and staff.

The force has a good understanding of, and is planning for, further financial challenges.

 

Questions for Efficiency

1

How well does the force use its resources to meet its demand?

Kent Police has an extensive understanding of current, changing and future levels of demand for its services. It is using this understanding to ensure that it matches resources to demand. Additionally, it also uses its information to manage, redirect and reduce unnecessary demand.

Performance is managed well with a keen commitment to improving both efficiency and service quality.

In the future, Kent wants to use its website as the primary way it engages with the public. It is working to improve the accessibility and interactivity of its site to achieve this.

Kent Police has recognised that its IT infrastructure requires significant investment to improve efficiency and effectiveness. The force has embarked on an ambitious programme of IT transformation in collaboration with Essex Police although this is still in the early stages of development.

Good
2

How sustainable and affordable is the workforce model?

Kent Police has developed a workforce model that focuses frontline resources into community policing and is well aligned to current financial and organisational requirements.

It enables resources to be directed at meeting the main priorities in the police and crime plan and responds well to the demands made by the public.

HMIC found that the force has a good understanding of the skills and competencies in the workforce. However in some areas of new and emerging crime types, such as high-tech internet crime it has been slow to build up the necessary skills and capabilities. However, the force contributes fully to the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit (SEROCU), cyber-crime unit and officers from Serious Economic Crime Unit have undertaken nationally-approved training.

In the long term as the workforce continues to reduce in size, the model will be reliant on the success of the force’s ambitious approach to reducing and managing demand in order that it can continue to police effectively with fewer officers and staff.

Good
3

How sustainable is the force’s financial position for the short and long term?

Kent Police is well-placed to face its future financial challenges. Through robust financial management and a commitment to continuous improvement, it has successfully reduced its spending by £49.4m over the last spending review period, balanced its budgets and maintained its services.

There are rigorous financial controls in place and the force is effective at managing and lessening financial risks. It works well with the office of the police and crime commissioner (OPCC) and financial plans reflect the objectives set out in the police and crime plan.

Kent has an excellent understanding of, and is planning for, further financial challenges. It is estimating that it needs to cut its spending by a further £47m between 2015/16 and end of 2017/18. While it has plans in place that can achieve this, success will rely on the force’s ability to transform the way it works, in particular how it manages demand and uses a significant investment in IT to enable it to work more efficiently.

Outstanding