Thames Valley 2017Read more about Thames Valley 2017
This is HMICFRS’ fourth PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) assessment of Thames Valley. 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 outstanding.
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.
Zoë Billingham, Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary
My overall assessment of Thames Valley’s performance will be published in spring 2018, following the publication of the legitimacy and effectiveness inspections in December 2017 and March 2018, respectively.
How effective is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?
How efficient is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?
Thames Valley Police is judged to be outstanding in the efficiency with which it keeps people safe and reduces crime. Our overall judgment this year is an improvement on last year when the force was judged to be good for efficiency overall. The force is judged to be outstanding in its understanding of demand; its use of resources to manage demand is also assessed to be outstanding; and its planning for future demand is judged to be good.
Thames Valley Police has an outstanding understanding of the demand for its services that is based on detailed analysis of a wide range of data, including from partner agencies such as the ambulance and fire and rescue services. The force is committed to understanding hidden demand and uses innovative technology to help it identify and tackle demand that is less likely to be reported. It takes steps to make sure that demand is not suppressed.
The force is also outstanding in how well it uses its resources. It has a good understanding of workforce skills and abilities through using the College of Policing’s competency and values framework, which sets out the national standards for workforce skills. It combines these with locally identified needs such as communication skills to describe and plan for the workforce skills it needs, now and in the future.
The force manages change programmes well, assessing new programmes against agreed criteria and whether proposed changes will support its priorities. The priority-based budgeting process gives the force a comprehensive understanding of the costs of its activities and the effect of moving resources from one part of the force to another. It is able to identify and analyse trends in demand and has a good understanding of likely future demand in many areas of its activities. The force is working with academic partners to include a wider range of information to develop this understanding. It is also is involved in a wide range of good collaborative work with other forces and agencies, and carefully assesses collaborative opportunities based on the benefits to the force.
Thames Valley Police is good in how it plans for the future, and some elements are outstanding. The force has displayed innovation, embracing and investing in technology. It uses external expertise such as financial and specialist IT consultancies to provide additional challenge, scrutiny and expertise for its saving plans. These savings plans project a balanced budget until 2021, but depend on the creation of more efficient ways of working. The force is investing well in its infrastructure to make this process possible.
How legitimate is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?
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.