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South Wales 2017

Read more about South Wales 2017

This is HMICFRS’ fourth PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) assessment of South Wales Police. PEEL is designed to give the public information about how their local police force is performing in several important areas, in a way that is comparable both across England and Wales, and year on year. The assessment is updated throughout the year with our inspection findings and reports.

The extent to which the force is effective at keeping people safe and reducing crime is not yet graded.

The extent to which the force is efficient at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

The extent to which the force is legitimate at keeping people safe and reducing crime is not yet graded.

The efficiency inspection findings are published below.

Wendy Williams, Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary

Contact Wendy Williams

HMI's observations

My overall assessment of South Wales’ performance will be published in spring 2018, following the publication of the legitimacy and effectiveness inspections in December 2017 and March 2018, respectively.

Effectiveness

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

To be graded
View the five questions for effectiveness

Efficiency

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

Last updated 09/11/2017
Good

South Wales Police is judged to be good in the efficiency with which it keeps people safe and reduces crime. Our overall judgment this year is the same as last year. The force is judged to be good in its understanding of demand; its use of resources to manage demand is assessed to be good; and its planning for future demand is also judged to be good.

South Wales Police has continued to build on its strong understanding of the demand on its services. It places this understanding at the heart of how it operates, how it plans and works with other organisations to identify, predict and tackle demand, and how it deploys its resources to meet demand. South Wales Police has developed strong collaborative working arrangements with other police forces, the private sector and local communities to deal with demand more efficiently. It is planning actively for how it will work in the future, and takes account of public satisfaction in these plans.

The force has systems in place to understand both the capabilities and gaps of its workforce, enabling it to direct its resources to meet current demand in most instances, and to allow for longer-term planning and deployment of its resources. It has a good understanding of the operational skills of its officers and staff, but has limited understanding of its leadership skills. At the time of our inspection, the number of abandoned calls made by the public to the force each month was too large. The force is aware that recent changes to improve its service have affected the balance between the demand for non-emergency call-handling and the number of call-handlers within its control room. It has taken some steps to address this in the medium term through technology; it now needs to consider introducing measures to address the number of abandoned calls, in order to provide the standard of service the public expects. As a result, chief officers have commissioned a comprehensive review of the demands on the public service centre to seek ways of tackling demand at first point of contact that are more efficient and to offer alternative methods of contact, while continuing to provide a high standard of service to the public.

The force’s investment plans should lead to greater efficiency and bring about improvements to the provision of its services. While the force is able to articulate the cost savings acquired from collaborative working it cannot, on the whole, demonstrate other benefits of collaborative working, or explain why it chooses to work with certain organisations and not others. Although the force is currently showing a gap in its budget from 2017/18 onwards, it has several contingencies in place, such as increasing the precept on council tax, and these contingencies should cater for any shortfall.

View the three questions for efficiency

Legitimacy

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

To be graded
View the three questions for legitimacy

Other inspections

How well has the force performed in our other inspections?

In addition to the three core PEEL pillars, HMICFRS 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.

Key facts

Force Area

803 square miles

Population

1.30m people 7% local 10 yr change

Workforce

76% frontline 78% national level
3.9 per 1000 population 3.6 national level
4% change in local workforce since 2010 15% national change since 2010

Victim-based crimes

0.06 per person 0.06 national level
Local 5 year trend (no change) National 5 year trend (no change)

Cost

57p per person per day local 55p per person per day national

Points of context provided by the force

  • The force area covers 1.3m people, almost half the population of Wales and its capital city, as well as 64 of its 100 most deprived communities.
  • The force manages around 49% of the total crime in Wales policing many major events and is the 7th busiest force in England and Wales.

Police and crime plan priorities

Reducing and preventing crime is my main purpose.

With the Chief Constable I am determined to tackle crime and its causes, identifying underlying issues and tackling them through early intervention and prompt, positive action based on evidence, partnership and evaluation of “what works”.

So to create “Safe Confident Communities” we will:

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  • Reduce and prevent crime and anti-social behaviour to keep people safe in their home and community
  • Innovate and push the boundaries in the search for effectiveness
  • Improve the way we connect with, involve and inform our communities
  • Protect the most vulnerable in our communities
  • Spend your money wisely to protect policing in your community
  • Make sure that the local criminal justice system works effectively and efficiently, meeting the needs of victims and challenging offenders
  • Make our contribution to the strategic policing requirement and successfully police major events