1.4 The statistics are an excellent example of professionals working together to identify key questions to be answered and adding public value. The statistics team has a very close and positive working relationship with Home Office users and stakeholders, including Home Office PUP policy and analytical teams. The level of engagement and analytical support provided by the statistics team is exemplary, and engagement happens in a range of ways. For instance, the statistics team speaks to the policy team daily and attends the policy team’s weekly meetings, and the team meets weekly with Home Office researchers. The statistics team has also held workshops to understand the policy team’s requirements.
1.5 Because statisticians are so well-integrated with policy colleagues, the team has a deep understanding of the policy context and use of the statistics and is able to meet those users’ evolving needs. The team acts on user feedback; for example, it made improvements to the publication of information on protected characteristics because of feedback.
1.6 The extensive collaboration with policing organisations, particularly the NPCC and College of Policing, was highlighted as a strength by NAO in its recent audit of the programme, calling it “a positive example of engagement between the [Home Office] and policing”. We welcome that the statistics team has built constructive working relationships with these stakeholders through the uplift programme and encourage it to build on this success.
1.7 It is understandable that user engagement is largely focused on Home Office and policing organisations, as this is critical for the successful delivery of the uplift programme. To ensure that the statistics are relevant and add value for all types of users, the statistics team should build its understanding of the users and uses of the statistics outside of these groups. Further development of the statistics after March 2023 offers an opportunity to broaden the types of users the team engages with.
1.8 The statistics are widely promoted, and Home Office has been good at raising awareness of the data. Usually, a press notice is issued on the same day as the statistics, and this has highlighted new developments to the statistics, for example, new data on protected characteristics. It is unfortunate that the April 2022 quarterly statistics, which covered the year ending March 2022 and report on whether the end-of-year target has been met, coincided with the 2022 pre-election period. It is good that the team is thinking about how it will handle press and communications around meeting the 20,000 additional officers target in April 2023, which will again coincide with a pre-election period.Back to top