PEEL News – Update 2

HMIC is developing a new programme of annual force inspections, called PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) assessments. This is the second in a series of short updates, aimed at keeping you informed during the development of the new programme.

Last week’s update gave an overview of the first PEEL assessments, which will be published on 27 November 2014, and explained that this year is a transition year for HMIC. Many of our inspections had already begun or concluded before the decision to carry out an annual assessment was taken. This update will explain more about the effectiveness strand of the PEEL assessments which HMIC’s crime inspection, carried out this September and October, was designed specifically to inform.


The effectiveness strand assesses how well each police force in England and Wales cuts crime, protects the vulnerable, tackles anti-social behaviour and deals with emergencies and other calls for service.

To do this we will answer the following six questions:

  1. How effective is the force at reducing crime and preventing offending?
  2. How effective is the force at investigating offending?
  3. How effective is the force at tackling anti-social behaviour?
  4. How effective is the force at protecting those at greatest risk of harm?
  5. How effective is the force at tackling serious, organised and complex crime?
  6. How effective is the force at meeting its commitments under the Strategic Policing Requirement?

Graded judgments

The crime inspection was designed to answer questions 1, 2 and 3 above, in a way that allows HMIC to assign each force a graded judgment: either outstanding, good, requires improvement, or inadequate.

Narrative judgments

Questions 4, 5 and 6 will be answered using evidence from other inspections carried out in the previous 12 months. These inspections do not provide evidence in a way that allows for graded judgments to be made, as they took place before the PEEL assessments were designed.

Which other inspections contribute to answering these questions?

The inspections carried out over the last 12 months which will contribute to answering some of the six questions above (in forces where those inspections took place) include:

The crime inspection

The public expects the police to prevent, reduce and investigate crime and anti-social behaviour and, in conjunction with other services and agencies, care for victims. For this inspection, we gathered evidence by analysing data and documents from forces, and conducting in-force inspections. We interviewed the senior officers responsible for crime, neighbourhood policing and victim care in each force. We held focus groups with frontline police officers, investigators and police staff, and observed their activities. We also reviewed crime investigations in each force and interviewed heads of partner organisations, such as local authorities.

We focused on anti-social behaviour, burglary in a dwelling, serious sexual offences, and assault with injury. We chose to focus on these offences because they allow us to make an assessment of how well the force treated the victim throughout the investigation – examining in particular how well officers gathered evidence and how well they were supervised.

Update on the legitimacy strand

Last week, HMIC held regional and national moderation meetings for the crime inspection, and the police integrity and corruption (PIC) inspections. Moderation is a process for ensuring forces are assessed and judged consistently. At the meetings, all HMIs agreed that there is insufficient compelling evidence from the PIC inspection to provide a graded judgment (outstanding, good, requires improvement or inadequate) for the question ‘To what extent does the force ensure the workforce acts with integrity?’. As a result, the evidence from PIC will therefore provide a narrative assessment of this question, rather than a graded judgment.

This change means that the first PEEL assessment will include no graded judgments for questions in the legitimacy pillar. Our webpage and the slide show in last week’s update have been amended to reflect this change.

Keeping you updated

To keep up to date on PEEL news,
view the list of our PEEL news articles or subscribe to our news feed.

If you have any comments or questions about the PEEL assessments, you can email the programme team at (e-mail address)

Coming up

The next update will look in more detail at the efficiency and legitimacy parts of the PEEL assessments.