The Inspection of Adult Offending Work started in April 2013. During this time we inspected and published reports on the work of 12 Probation Trusts, publishing an aggregate report after the first six inspections and another after the last inspection. You can find all IAOW reports here.

The inspections focused on the quality of work with offenders and victims. In each area we inspected a representative sample of cases, made up of community orders and licences. In each case we interviewed those responsible for delivering the work.

In each case we followed the ‘offender’s journey’ – that is, we firstly examined the quality of the assessment of the factors which need to be addressed to prevent offending; secondly the quality of work that was done with the offender to change their behaviour; thirdly the evidence of outcomes – that is, whether the work had been effective in preventing offending and protecting the public. This was a logical sequence which considers whether practice is well-targeted, effective and supported desistance.

We followed up our findings from the case inspections by meeting with managers from probation trusts and other provider organisations, and with sentencers, and we obtained the views of victims through questionnaires.

The inspection focused on the extent to which the quality of work supports the outcome measures of:

  • assisting sentencing
  • delivering the sentence of the court
  • reducing the likelihood of reoffending
  • protecting the public
  • delivering effective work for victims.

Inspection Framework

The Inspection Framework (PDF, 92 kB) document contains further details on the programme.

Criteria and Quality Indicators

The Criteria (PDF, 180 kB) formed the basis of our inspections.

Case Assessment Guide and Tool

The primary purpose of this case assessment guide was to ‘guide’ assessors from HMI Probation and Probation Trusts in what they should look for when assessing the quality of offender management in cases managed in the community. It was a companion document to the Inspection of Adult Offending Work inspection tool implemented from April 2013.

Case assessment guide (PDF, 1 MB) – English

Case assessment tool (PDF, 2 MB) – English
Case assessment tool (PDF, 1 MB) – Cymraeg

How we scored the case sample

How we scored the case sample (PDF, 53 kB)