Einstein : Not everything that can be counted counts. And not everything that counts can be counted.

Monday, 28 May 2007

Police plan to cut bureaucracy creates red tape

I was absolutely amazed to see this article http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/05/20/npolice20.xml about reducing red tape etc etc etc.

Not only do we have to keep all sorts of irrelevant and duplicated stats, reproduced on a myriad of invented forms, almost always by 'electronic' submission so we can be monitored, judged and put into tables, we are constantly told what to do and where to do it to justify the existence of the army of officers taken off the streets or formed into intel cells to duplicate the information between themselves and produce instructions on where to patrol and what to patrol for.

What ever happened to our Policing skills ?

What ever happened to our Policing skills ?????

Yes it needs asking twice because the management appear to think that every front line officer is either incompetent or lazy & workshy.

In my experience, officers have access to the relevant information to allow them to do this without being told.

Why else would thet set up all this effort to identify what we do and how we do it.

In our downtime we can direct our patrols towards identified problems.

What the bloody hell is 'downtime' ? I've never seen it, don't what it looks like or tastes like.

The officers are able to work out where the problems are and will be able to direct their patrols accordingly. Trouble is there are so many things that seem to get in the way (form filling not included at the moment).

Perhaps I'll set up a working group to research it, get a couple of people interested in promotion to research it for me, I will then submit my recommendations taking the credit for those who did the research and create an illusion that this is somehow beneficial for the organisation as it re-directs our efforts towards various targets that are linked to strategic aims within the relevant plan for the next review period. Pick one of the topics like reassuring the public, diversity or other 'key' phrases and before you know it there will a member of the SMT spouting how this revolutionary idea is supporting various things and everything is better. Show that we really do care. Then I will sort out a series of meetings to discuss exactly how we care and other strategic issues that may be relevant or otherwise. Wheel reinvented but in a new and radical way.

I've seen it when beats were changed from beat a, b, & c to beats 1, 2, & 3. Now there is real progress for you. I told you, new and radical and different.

If we take away all of the Police canteens we can use the space created for housing extra officers to deal with all of this. Trouble is that where do all these 'extra' officers come from. For the intel units, for the target squads, for vehicle crime, burglary units, tactical units etc etc etc ?

They all come from front line Police resources that are stretched to the max anyway.

Add all this reduced form filling on computers (if you can get on a computer sometimes) and the daily form we keep to enable us to fill out the monthly sheet, the arrest/property or deployment forms, the daily task sheets, including the negative ones, then wonder why we are spending more and more time off the streets. Look for computer that if free, that works, that has a printer assigned to it, that doesn't crash when you use it, that gets slower and slower the farther away you are from the hub of the world, unusally at HQ.

(Heard an interesting story at a regional PSU recently about ASDA. Anyone know what it means. Didn't want to ask and be seen to be a bit of an idiot, especially as some of the combatants pissed themselves when someone else asked because they never knew either).

More and more of our time is spent on accounting ourselves to the time & motion accountants that appear to set out the stall for what do and how we do it. I'm bloody well fed up with it.

I'm not going to be able to change it but I can have a damn good moan about it.

Too many people want to fit into the mould and to do that they have to play by the rules and not question or offer an iota of dissent else they find the door shut in their face. Too much operational and not enough strategic.

Now I'm off to try to find a spare computer. Just like the guinness, I'm not bitter, really.

1 comment:

The Thin Blue Line said...

Absolutely spot on! We either work in the same Force or the whole country's Policing is just as much a shambles!
And I thought you'd asked the question at the top twice because you'd just got into the habit of duplicating everything!