We are currently experiencing network problems with the desktop version of Police Oracle. We hope to have these resolved as soon as possible.

Uplift targets based on “long-outdated” police allocation formula

The Public Accounts Committee has today expressed concerns over the distribution of new officers under Uplift.

Force targets under Uplift were set according to the Police Allocation Formula, a tool defined as “obsolete” in 2018 by the previous Public Accounts Committee.

Four years later the Home Office has not yet reviewed it but said there was “no credible alternative” in place, It is working on a replacement which is due to be in place by the next general election.

Today, the Public Affairs Committee has expressed concerns that using the obsolete formual will have led to a mismatch of officers against future policing needs. It said the programme will lead to some forces, such as Surrey, having more officers than in 2010 and others below those levels. The Met is expected to be 11 per cent higher, for example, and West Midlands 7 per cent lower.  

In the report, the Committee outlined that forces have expressed concerns to the NAO regarding their ability to maintain a balanced workforce within likely future funding settlements. That will need to be managed until the current approach is reviewed.

Nonetheless, the report notes that the service looks “on track” to achieve its target, although it stresses that with a changing labour market and a decline in trust and confidence in policing, the final year will not be easy.

It further criticised the emphasis of the £3.6 billion programme on “getting people through the door” with no process for measuring the impact they will have as of yet.

New officers it is are estimated will prevent around 505,000 crimes from 2024-25 – however an additional 729,000 cases could enter the CJS.

The Home Office said it is difficult to draw a direct link between extra officers and crime levels and that they are working with the MoJ to develop better modelling for this, saying some of the above estimates have since been reduced.

Over the next 10 years, the programme is expected to cost £18.5 billion.

As of March, 13,500 additional officers had been recruited – this is on top of forces backfilling any leavers during the period of the programme. It leaves 6,500 for the final year.

The increase in officers is bound to exacerbate some of the problems currently seen in court as volumes of cases increase – the impact of which the PAC does not believe has been fully understood by the Home Office or the wider criminal justice system.

It also remains “not convinced” that the PEQF compulsory degree programme meets the needs of forces, reiterating concerns of stakeholders about the exclusion of certain recruits as well as burn-out among those who do join.

40 per cent of officers recruited in the first year of the programme came through via IPLDP. Most forces have now transitioned to PEQF.

Meanwhile the attrition rate for new officers stands at around 9 per cent, which compares with an overall police officer voluntary resignation rate of 2 per cent per year.

PAC chair Dame Meg Hillier said: “If the Home Office does hit its target of 20,000 new police officers by March 2023, the PAC will be delighted to be able to recognise a programme delivered on time, and see Government learn lessons for other programmes.

“But it appears this success will only be on the narrowest metric of numbers through the door – the process for assigning which force’s door these recruits go through is years out of date and the exercise does not appear to have progressed the urgent need to make forces more representative of the communities they serve.”

Leave a Comment
View Comments 4
In Other News
Home Secretary asks college to re-consider non-degree entry routes
PEQF should take into account benefits of direct entry, says PCC
Dyfed-Powys to offer PEQF training in Welsh
Pace of Uplift 'appears to be slowing' say researchers
More forces re-open IPLDP entry route to attract Uplift recruits
Outdated funding formula costs force £40m per year says PCC
PCC lead to meet PM candidates to discuss police priorities
Vacant roles and a new deal: why the pay battle isn’t over
College starts programme to "create leaders at every level"
PCC asks Home Office to overrule College on scrapping IPLDP
Police Scotland retention row raises fresh questions in England
College of Policing reaffirms end of IPLDP with Regulations change
More News