Further to our blog on continuous improvement (CI) in UK policing (14 October), we have discovered that the Northern Ireland Police Service is required by law to engage in this activity. Part V of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000 requires the Board (each year) “to make arrangements to secure continuous improvement in the way in which its functions and those of the Chief Constable are exercised, having regard to a combination of economy, effectiveness and efficiency”. Further investigation identifies that this appears to be very narrowly interpreted, with just one aspect of the operation being “improved” each year. The committee that overseas CI meets twice a year. Mmmm?
As the NPIA identified before it was wound up, if you want to initiate successful change it needs to engage everyone in the organisation. Making CI a statutory duty is not going to work without real commitment.