Monday, 7 September 2009

Staff survey points the way forward for North Wales Police

Confidence in neighbourhood policing, the importance of public feedback and a sense of pride came out strongly in a recent North Wales Police staff survey, with communication and the use of discretion coming through as significant challenges.

The survey, carried out in June 2009, gave staff the opportunity to give their views on various aspects of working for North Wales Police. The results, published today, give the Force a starting point from which to build on its strengths and to address areas for development.

The results show that 75% consider North Wales Police a good organisation to work for (with only 6% expressing dissatisfaction); 74% consider that their training has enabled them to deal confidently with the public; and 73% feel that there are equal opportunities for all.

The results also show that:

  • neighbourhood policing is a priority, indicating that efforts to live up to the Policing Pledge are proving successful
  • a high proportion of staff consider public confidence and feedback important measures of their performance
  • staff feel positive about their working environment, have a sense of pride and are positive about the effectiveness of training
  • respondents were less positive about understanding organisational goals, communication, working together and inclusive leadership

These issues are addressed in the areas for development listed below and are being considered by Chief Officers and the Police Federation, UNISON, the Superintendents' Association and the Police Authority, and an action plan is being developed.

Areas for development

  • Senior managers need to be more open to the views of staff and more responsive to what is happening on the front line
  • A greater sense of corporacy is needed across the organisation
  • Staff need latitude to exercise professional judgement in some cases
  • Partnership working should be evaluated
  • The focus of the work of police community support officers should be examined
  • Some aspects of working methods need to be standardised

Acting Chief Constable Clive Wolfendale said: "The high number of colleagues who took part in the survey demonstrates the level of interest there is in continuing to improve North Wales Police. The survey was one we chose to do to identify where we are and to help us to move forward.

"A total of 1,265 people (50%) completed the questionnaire, making it the biggest response to any staff survey undertaken by the force in recent years. The results will provide important information for the new Chief Constable.

"Some of the areas which scored highly were about being a diverse and fair organisation and the fact that we offer a good working environment and excellent training opportunities. All of this shows that North Wales Police is an organisation which values its employees and encourages them to make the most of their individual skills and abilities.

"Clearly there is work to be done in some quarters and this will be addressed as a matter of urgency. We acknowledge the concerns around internal communication and the use of discretion. We are however encouraged by the extremely positive response on neighbourhood policing, which has been a priority for the force and which we feel shows that our commitment to service improvement is paying dividends”.

The survey, which forces throughout the UK were given the option of carrying out, was supported in North Wales by the Police Authority, the Police Federation, UNISON and the Superintendents' Association.

Cllr Ian Roberts, Chairman of the Police Authority said: “I was pleased to see that the survey highlighted many positive aspects of policing in North Wales, not least the importance of neighbourhood policing which has always been a major priority for the Authority.

“It was no surprise to learn that staff have a sense of pride about working for North Wales Police and that they take their responsibilities seriously.

“The report also flagged up a number of areas including leadership and communication where attention is needed.

“North Wales Police is an excellent Force and we are looking forward to working closely with the new Chief Constable to ensure that it goes from strength to strength.”

1 comment:

  1. Good in so many ways, and yet half of the staff didn't/wouldn't take part.

    Sobering, that.

    Just as a declining turn-out in parliamentary elections is deemed to be worrying, so should we worry that 50% of the people whose livelihood derives from NWP didn't want to take part.


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