HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) is independent of both Government and the Police Service. Its core role is to promote efficiency and effectiveness of police forces and policing organisations in England, Wales and Northern Ireland through inspection and assessment.
While the inspectorate was established under legislation in 1856, numerous further enactments have extended its remit to provide similar scrutiny to other policing bodies, such as the British Transport Police, the National Crime Agency (NCA) and elements of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
Statement of purpose: Promoting improvements in policing to make everyone safer.

Values:

  • Respect – we respect and value all those we work with, and the contribution that they make.
  • Honesty – we are truthful at all times.
  • Independence – we are objective in all we do, without bias towards or against anyone; we are independent of the police service and government, and act only in the public interest.
  • Integrity – we act ethically and openly in all we do.
  • Fairness – we treat everyone – both within and outside HMIC – fairly.

What we do

At HMIC, we inspect, monitor and report on the efficiency and effectiveness of police forces and policing activity with the aim of encouraging improvement. We work with other inspectorates on inspections where policing interacts with the wider criminal justice system.

By providing accessible information on the performance of forces, we allow their public, and peers, to see how they are doing. This will place pressure on those forces requiring improvement in aspects of policing to raise their game.

Our reports are clear, jargon-free, accessible, measured, objective, statistically reliable and authoritative.

We also continue to provide high-quality professional advice to police, using experienced officers and other subject-matter experts to identify the best practice which all forces can learn from to improve their performance. We encourage operational excellence and, increasingly, a good deal for the public in terms of value for money.

We carry out many force inspections and visits on a regular and rolling basis, and publish our findings on this website. Our reports on broad policing themes and specific subjects – from terrorism and serious organised crime to custody arrangements – can all be found in the publications section of our website.

Much of our work relates to the mainstream police forces in England and Wales, together with the Police Service of Northern Ireland and the British Transport Police. However, we also inspect other law enforcement bodies, including the National Crime Agency and HM Revenue and Customs.

The reports: All HMIC inspection reports are submitted to the Secretary of State, copied to the inspected organisations and published – unless there are specific issues of potential compromise to operational integrity, national security or other statutory or legal impediment. In force-specific reports, both good and poor practice is highlighted. In national thematic reports HMIC seeks to ‘name and praise’ but not to ‘name and shame’ – this encourages full disclosure of poor practice for the wider benefit of the Service as a whole.

HMIC website