Metropolitan PEEL 2018
How efficiently does the force operate and how sustainable are its services to the public?
The Metropolitan Police Service is good at meeting current demand and using resources. It works closely with other organisations to understand demand. Its restructure will help it manage increasing demand with reducing resources. It needs to oversee the skills and capabilities of its workforce centrally. It is focusing on new digital ways of working to assist in managing its demand. There are some excellent examples of innovation and working with others.
The force has an effective approach to planning for the future. It has done a lot of work to understand current and future demand. It has linked its planning with other functions such as human resources (HR) and finance. Its plans are ambitious but achievable. The force works well with its partners. It understands what the public wants and uses this feedback to change the services it provides. It sets and manages its budgets well. But it faces a funding gap for the financial year 2022/23.
How well does the force use its resources to meet the demand it faces?
The force is good at meeting current demands and using resources. It has just done one of the largest structural changes ever seen in British policing. The restructure was necessary for it to provide a good policing service to the public despite increasing demand and reducing resources. But this needs time to take effect. The force also needs to make some cultural changes to the way its workforce does things. It has invested in programmes and technology to support these changes.
The force based its changes on an assessment of current and expected demand for its services. It has tried to match its resources to that demand to provide a balanced policing service across the force. It works closely with other organisations to understand demand, including hidden demand. It also looks at the factors that affect demand and ways to reduce any that are unnecessary.
The force is focusing on new digital ways of working to assist in managing its demand. A new interactive response system (IVR) within the control rooms has reduced demand by 30–35 percent. Online reporting tools and the new TDIU have also significantly reduced demand on frontline officers.
There are some excellent examples of innovation and working with others. This helps the force and its partners manage demand together. The force also works with business consultants, other forces, industry and academia. Operation Venice is the response to moped-enabled crime. It shows how the force works well with others to develop new concepts.
The force has assessed the skills and capabilities of its workforce, including its leaders. But it doesn’t hold this information centrally on a single database. It should review the information it holds using a centralised database, to make sure it fully understands it. This will give the force more confidence in its ability to meet current and future demand.
Areas for improvement
- The force should review the workforce skills and capabilities information that it already has, including for its leaders, to assure itself that its understanding is as comprehensive as it can be. It should ensure that it has central governance with a central database. This will enable the force to be confident in its ability to be efficient in meeting current and likely future demand.
How well does the force plan for the future?
The force has an effective approach to planning for the future. It has done a lot of work to understand current and future demand. It has linked its planning with other functions such as HR, learning and development, finance and the transformation portfolio. It is trying to reduce unnecessary demand. But it needs to review how the structural changes and changes in demand are affecting its frontline officers.
The force works well with its partners. It engages with the public in a variety of ways so that it understands what the public wants. It uses this feedback to change the services it provides, such as how people can contact the police. It uses technology such as body-worn video and mobile devices to enhance its services. It also considers the potential effect of changing technology when making its plans. The force looks externally for new talent, which is good.
The force sets and manages its budgets well. It has achieved substantial savings since 2012. But it can’t keep its current number of officers beyond 2022/23 without additional funding, at which point it will face a further budget gap. It has a good capital spending programme to support its changes and plans.
The force would benefit from having a single database for skills and capability. It doesn’t have any formal succession planning in place, but it has invested in a comprehensive leadership development programme for all its 10,000 leaders and managers, known as ‘Leading for London’ to improve its organisational culture and support its supervisors to lead better. The force’s plans are ambitious but achievable.Detailed findings for question 2