Individual Performance Measurement in Lincolnshire Police

Lincolnshire Police is a public sector organisation comprising 1266 officers and 645 civilian support staff. It is responsible for the policing of 2284 square miles and 634,200 residents, plus seasonal migrants. It has an annual budget of i?? 81. 4 million. Identified stakeholders include local residents, partner agencies (such as health, fire brigade, and schools), police authority, employees, local and national government, and users of its services (both voluntary and involuntary).

Lincs Police has to provide numerous services to residents, comprising primarily of crime prevention and detection, prioritised by taking into account national directives and local issues. (Annual Report 2003) AXA Sun Life is the fifth largest company in the life and pensions industry in the UK. In 2001, AXA Sun Life generated revenue of i?? 5,934m, and comprised a total workforce of 3,665. The majority of its business (around 70%) comes from independent financial advisors; the remaining 30% is split between the direct sales force, direct marketing operations, international division and major business partners.

Stakeholders include shareholders, policyholders, employees and service users. The company exists to provide long term investment and security for its policyholders, and sustained profit for shareholders. (AXA Online)[SG1] Executive Summary Lincs Police are training officers for a new job, and a new way of life. Due to the nature of the role, the induction procedure is comprehensive. AXA are employing people with experience, and want profit generated quickly. Induction is therefore limited, and not very effective.

It is clear that a more structured approach with mentoring and shadowing would lead to a greater affinity with the company at an earlier stage. [SG2] Development from a police perspective is very much role specific and training is given when a person assumes a new role. There is limited scope to provide training for individual development within a current role. There are no feedback mechanisms in place to ensure training has been delivered or assimilated. A concentration on personal development would lead to better skilled and motivated individuals who could concentrate on effectiveness in their current role.

AXA concentrate training on those who require remedial help, identified at monthly performance meetings and through testing. A move towards training for all staff could improve skills and motivation for the entire workforce and lead to better sales. Lincs Police currently have no individual performance monitoring system, and no remedial procedures to deal with demotivated officers. This needs to be actioned as a matter of urgency. AXA have regular management contact with individuals, however they link performance related bonuses with appraisal interviews. They may wish to change this to ensure greater honesty in the appraisal system[SG3]

Mistakes by officers cost the organisation in terms of claims against its budget; those by AXA employees merely affect the profitability of the company. As such, induction in the police service has to be more involved to ensure that the primary stakeholders, the public, are not served by incompetent officers whose mistakes could affect the service delivery to Lincolnshire as a whole. AXA have to ensure that their managers are profitable as soon as possible to ensure value for shareholders is maximised. AXA have a short procedure, limited to a welcome pack and a few days with a buddy.

This can give a poor initial impression of the company, and a longer time before a new employee fully adapts to the culture and values. This can lead to a greater staff turnover, and initially, poor quality work which may affect the organisational profitability in the short term[SG5]. The police have a much greater induction procedure which is designed to adapt officers to a new way of life. Initially a four week process, officers are given tours, meet with representatives from various departments, are given uniform, and have comprehensive inputs on H&S, diversity, pensions and terms and conditions of service.

Unfortunately, it can lead to an "us and them" attitude, with officers feeling very different from the public at large. Comparison of Induction Procedures – Police and AXA[SG6] Ultimately, the success or failure of an induction procedure is measured in terms of staff effectiveness during the early stages of their employment[SG7], in the satisfaction of the introduction process, and the turnover of staff in the first few months of employment. It would be useful to have such data to compare the effectiveness of the two induction processes[SG8].

It is interesting to note that Lee Maddock states in relation to the induction process at AXA "It would be a bit crass of me to say that the induction process consists of the branch manager lobbing your car keys at you and telling you to get on with it but that isn't far from the truth…… The first few days are usually spent reading the information and asking your buddy questions. It is quite an uncomfortable period of time for the new recruit because the buddy is usually busy and work needs to be done so new recruits are basically thrown straight into it.

"[SG9] Wanous (1992) suggested a 4 stage process to induction, and the table below examines the relative effectiveness of the two organisations. It is apparent that the police induction process is superior to AXA. This is because the induction is linked to a great deal of training in the police for a completely new role, whereas AXA are inducting people who can already perform the role, but merely require an introduction to the culture of the company.