Nottinghamshire PEEL 2015
How well has the force performed in our other inspections?
In addition to the three core PEEL pillars, HMIC carries out inspections of a wide range of policing activity throughout the year. Some of these are conducted alongside the PEEL inspections (for instance, our 2016 leadership assessment); others are joint inspections.
Findings from these inspections are published separately to the main PEEL reports, but are taken into account when producing the rounded assessment of each force's performance.
As part of HMIC’s annual all-force inspections into police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy (PEEL) in 2015, HMIC assessed how well led forces are at every rank and grade of the organisation and across all areas inspected in PEEL. We reviewed how well a force understands and is developing its leaders; whether it has set a clear and compelling future direction; and how well it motivates and engages the workforce.
Nottinghamshire Police is a well led organisation. The chief officer team provides clear expectations around how its leaders should lead by using the force’s shared values. We found a clear sense of direction and that force leaders generally feel confident that they know what the organisation expects of them, although less consistently so at lower ranks and supervisory levels.
The force has not analysed its current or future leadership capacity and capability. However, it has a better understanding of the background, skills composition and experience of its senior leadership teams compared to managers and supervisors.
How well does the force have a clear understanding of the current state of its leadership at every level?
HMIC examined how well forces understand the strengths and weaknesses of leadership across the force and how well the workforce understands its leadership role. Strong, clear leadership across every rank and grade is vital to the effectiveness and efficiency of a modern and capable police force.
Nottinghamshire Police’s chief officer team provides clear expectations for force leaders by promoting shared values, commonly referred to as PROUD values. PROUD stands for professional; respect for all; one team; utmost integrity, trust and honesty; and doing things differently. The values are an integral part of force recruitment and promotion processes and leaders use them in everyday actions and in leadership development programmes.
Leaders across the organisation generally feel confident that they know what the force expects of them, although less consistently so at lower ranks and supervisory levels where responses ranged from upholding the PROUD values and behaviours to some examples of meeting numerical performance targets. Analysis of research, staff survey results, workshops, and senior leadership events has enabled the force to identify positive leadership behaviours. It now needs to promote them across the organisation.
The force uses a number of methods to enable a better understanding of how its workforce perceives leadership across the organisation. The workforce has a good awareness of how to feed back its views by using these methods, and most staff feel confident in doing so. However, some are less confident and the force plans to hold another staff survey.
How well has the force provided a clear and compelling sense of the future direction of the organisation?
HMIC examined the extent to which forces have set out a clear, compelling and realistic sense of future direction, because it is important to ensure that the workforce is motivated to build for the future and that the force knows the kinds of skills it is looking to develop. We were also interested to find out how well leaders are making use of new approaches to enable forces to meet future financial challenges.
The chief officer team has articulated a clear and ambitious sense of its future plans and priorities, which is to be the best performing police force in England and Wales by reducing crime and anti-social behaviour and to improve victim satisfaction while managing financial resources so there is no adverse effect on performance.
The workforce perception of the force’s direction is that a significant amount of money needs to be saved, which means reducing the size of the workforce while finding new and more efficient ways of providing a good service to the public.
The force is to implement a new workforce model over the next two-to-three years. It has not yet fully analysed what leadership capabilities it will require, in the new model. There is a plan to identify the critical skills and abilities required to ensure success, and these skills are already identified in investigations and public protection teams.
The chief officer team understands the benefits of using new technology to provide improved services. It promotes closer collaboration across the five forces in the East Midlands region and led a successful Home Office bid for body-worn video across the five forces.
How is the force developing leadership, motivating the workforce and encouraging staff engagement?
HMIC examined how well forces identify and develop leadership, as good quality of leadership is key to ensuring that forces overcome their challenges of reducing crime and meeting the needs of victims. We were not looking for one particular style of leadership, but focused on how well leaders motivate their workforce and improve performance to provide a quality service to the public.
The force provides a variety of leadership development programmes. The leadership and management team develops these programmes, and they complement existing national training programmes. The force’s evaluation of two recent programmes, titled ‘Shaping Conversations’ and ‘Quest’, is enabling it to better understand its current and potential leadership capability.
The force could improve how it manages workforce performance. The force’s use of the appraisal system is inconsistent, which means it has no clear mechanism for explicitly setting and managing longer-term performance objectives.
The force has a number of self-assessment tools to support staff development, and has a vibrant mentoring and coaching programme supporting over 100 people. The force publicises the programme on its intranet, and managers recommend suitable individuals, although participants can also self-nominate. However, HMIC found that the workforce is not universally aware of the scheme, which is an area that the force could improve. This means the force may not fully identify the talent available in the organisation.
The force uses relevant information to develop a good understanding of the background, skills composition and experience of its senior leadership teams, however its understanding is less developed at middle manager and supervisor levels.
To what extent is leadership improving the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy of the force?
As good quality leadership is an important factor of policing performance, HMIC examined how leaders are improving the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy of forces through clear, reasoned and swift actions. This is the first time HMIC has graded forces on their legitimacy, so no year-on-year comparison is possible for this pillar.
Leadership in Nottinghamshire Police has resulted in a stronger focus on improving the legitimacy of the force, in the way it keeps people safe and reduces crime, though in some areas the force could make improvements. Chief officers are visible leaders who promote an ethical culture through the force’s shared values. The workforce understands force values and how to act as ethical leaders.
Leadership has also resulted in a stronger focus on improving the force’s effectiveness, and this can be seen in the work the force does to prevent crime and tackle anti-social behaviour, especially reducing violent crime and combating it in an increasingly digitised world. Senior leaders have prioritised this in the police and crime plan and ensure they focus on these areas by working closely with other organisations. Their leadership means the force works well with local partners to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour.
The force displays strong leadership by ensuring compliance with all aspects of the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme. It engages effectively with the groups that its officers stop most often, and provides good training for the workforce. Officers clearly understand stop and search best practice, and the force’s robust recording and governance systems ensure it uses stop and search powers appropriately.
The force’s use of innovation and technology is strong, and its analyses of costs and benefits and post-implementation reviews show significant savings in officer time, which is improving the overall ability of its workforce to work more effectively and efficiently.