Create your own Brochure

[Skip to content]

Search our Site
Tuesday 24 April 2018
.

Integrated Offender Management Efficiency Toolkit - Phase one: Maximising Local Efficiency and Effectiveness

Version: Tk/EM/1.1

Author: Home Office; Ministry of Justice

Please note that this is a working document.


INTRODUCTION

This document is the latest in a series of tools and products intended to assist local planning for, and development of, Integrated Offender Management (IOM), to help areas develop and embed local IOM approaches; in particular the IOM Key Principles1 and the IOM Key Principles Self Assessment tool.

  


i.   BACKGROUND TO THE TOOL

Integrated Offender Management approaches are operating, being developed or are planned in many areas across England and Wales. Local IOM models differ from area to area, to reflect local needs and priorities, consistent with the Government’s de-centralisation agenda.  However, common to all areas is the focus on building on participating agencies’ experience of partnership working, to develop more effective and efficient joint working arrangements.  


The current financial circumstances and resulting pressures on partner agencies’ budgets increases the need to secure better value for money, whilst maintaining or improving the delivery of frontline services. In the context of IOM, this means ensuring that the best use is made of the time, resources and effort invested into the local approach, with relevant business processes as effective and streamlined as they can be.

IOM provides a local framework for agencies to come together to ensure that the offenders whose crime causes most damage locally are managed in a co-ordinated way, bringing greater coherence to the delivery of relevant local programmes and approaches to tackle crime, reduce re-offending and protect communities.  



ii.   PURPOSE

The purpose of the tool is to help areas by identifying the efficiencies and effective working practices to ensure that maximum benefit is being derived from the time and resources invested into IOM by partner agencies, and to help develop a local business case for IOM. 


Annex A - IOM efficiency and effectiveness template provides a checklist / action planning tool that can be used to identify and tease out areas where further efficiencies may be gained locally.  



iii.  IOM efficiency TOOLKIT

IOM efficiency toolkit compromises two distinct however complementary sections. 


i. Phase one; Maximising Local Efficiency and Effectiveness Tool 

ii. Phase two; Break Even Analysis Handbook and Tool


It is therefore our intention to supplement this Maximising Local Efficiency and Effectiveness Tool with another tool that will enable partnerships to demonstrate improved value for money (VFM) through assessing the costs and benefits of IOM. 

 

This handbook and the associated spreadsheet tool will focus on providing a common framework that allows partnerships to carry out break-even analysis of their local IOM approach.



iv.  IOM KEY PRINCIPLES 

This tool is designed to be used alongside the IOM Key Principles.  This focuses on the five key principles for IOM which were set out in the IOM policy statement: 


  • All partners tackling offenders together - local partners, both criminal justice and non-criminal justice agencies, encourage the development of the multi-agency problem-solving approach by focussing on offenders, not offences.
  • Delivering a local response to local problems - all relevant local partners are involved in strategic planning, decision-making and funding choices.
  • Offenders facing their responsibility or facing the consequences - offenders are provided with a clear understanding of what is expected of them.
  • Making better use of existing programmes and governance - this involves gaining further benefits from programmes such as the Prolific and other Priority Offender (PPO) programme, Drug Interventions Programme (DIP) and Community Justice to increase the benefits for communities. This will also enable partners to provide greater clarity around roles and responsibilities. 
  • All offenders at high risk of causing serious harm and/or re-offending are ‘in scope’ - intensity of management relates directly to severity of risk, irrespective of position within the criminal justice system or whether statutory or non-statutory.

 


The IOM Key Principles Self Assessment Tool provides a practical tool for local areas to assess the development and delivery of their IOM arrangements. The self assessment tool is for partnerships to work through, to help provide an understanding of the strengths of local arrangements and consider areas that may require further development whilst maintaining local innovation.



A FRAMEWORK FOR IDENTIFYING IOM EFFICIENCIES

i.   DRAWING ON LOCAL EXPERIENCE - INTRODUCING A FRAMEWORK

This tool has been developed by drawing on the learning and experience of staff at strategic and operational levels in a number of areas, who have made significant progress in implementing local IOM arrangements. This includes West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire, Bristol, Lancashire and West Midlands IOM partnerships, and the East of England and North West Offender Health Teams.  Semi structured interviews with staff working in different agencies involved in the partnerships were conducted to examine the processes that operate within their IOM arrangements. 


The learning from local areas suggests that, in order to ensure that the IOM approach meets local needs effectively and efficiently, whilst achieving maximum impact, there needs to be active engagement by all key partners (including voluntary, community and social enterprise sectors) working across the following three areas: 


  1. Strategic decision making;
  2. Design of the local IOM approach; and 
  3. Delivery at the operational level. 

  

IOM Toolkit Circles

 


Each section of this tool will provide you with questions and ideas to assist the identification of potential efficiencies in your local approach by focusing on:  


  • eliminating waste and reducing duplication;
  • increasing alignment between agencies and approaches; 
  • increasing effectiveness; and
  • realising efficiency savings.

 


The three areas – strategic, design and delivery - are, of course, interdependent, informing and influencing each other in both directions.  For example, a process being considered at a strategic level may have an impact on the design decisions and operational delivery and therefore the efficiencies may be realised at all three levels. Set out below is a consideration of the efficiencies and improved effectiveness that can be derived from examining commissioning arrangements and processes:


-   at a strategic level, the examination might be structured around considering the leadership and governance arrangements, including decision making on prioritising offenders and commissioning arrangements linked to pathway provision;  


-   at a design level, there might be an examination of who the priority offenders are under local IOM arrangements and how these offenders are managed;


-   at the operational delivery level, examination of the potential for, and opportunity to, move away from more traditional ways of working, breaking down pre-existing structures or approaches, to work more flexibly and dynamically in partnership across agency boundaries, thereby realising efficiencies through savings in time and resources spent on duplicative activities across the IOM partnership.   


 

CASE STUDY

Specialist magistrates court sessions for managed offenders


The Integrated Diversionary Offender Management (IDOM) team in West Midlands developed their relationship with the local court service to introduce a specific regular session, where offenders in the scope of the IDOM team would be brought to court and dealt with in a single appearance at a magistrate’s court. 


This was designed in order to enable the presentation of a more relevant and bespoke case to inform the magistrates, taking account of the intelligence and input from the Police and Probation officers working closely with the offender, to increase the likelihood of a sentence appropriate to the offender’s rehabilitation and resettlement needs. 


An additional, intended, benefit is that defendants are dealt with at their first appearance at court, rather than cases being adjourned to allow for follow up reports to be prepared by other probation or police staff. Access to court service IT systems has ensured that, when a managed offender is charged, the court system is automatically updated. 

  

The introduction of the managed offender court entailed no additional cost to the Police, Probation or Court service. In addition, the court was kept available to use for other sentencing matters where appropriate, so where there was a limited demand for court time on occasions this did not affect the capacity of the court service. 


Magistrates were provided with training on IDOM to give them a better understanding of the need for a more co-ordinated and structured approach to offender management. There has been a reported improvement in the number of instances where sentences recommended by the offender manager in the oral report have been agreed by magistrates, encompassing a mix of custodial and community sentences. 



 


Changes in organisational arrangements and/or ways of working across strategic, design and delivery levels can range from fundamental changes, such as the ambitions of local IOM approach, to more straightforward changes that organisations can make to their own processes. The following sections of this tool reflect some of this range.   It is, of course, up to each local area to decide whether or how to review their arrangements in the light of the processes, suggestions and questions set out in the tool.



THEME 1:  ACHIEVING EFFICIENCIES THROUGH A STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK

The concept of investing shared resources into tackling re-offending – that is, preventing further criminality on the part of known offenders - is key to the IOM approach.  There are, of course, costs associated with preventing crime and re-offending, but a costs and benefits analysis is likely to show that those immediate costs will be more than off-set by the savings to victims and their families, the wider community and the criminal justice system by preventing persistent offenders from re-offending.  


In some areas, partnerships have seen a strategic shift towards a joint punishment/rehabilitation focus. Adapting ways of working in recognition of this shift in emphasis and strategic vision can result in efficiency gains; for example, through a commitment by strategic leaders to pool resources and target agreed priorities.  This, in turn, can help overcome other perceived barriers (e.g. focus or organisational ethos) between partner agencies, resulting in the removal of duplication of time and effort in strategic planning, design of the local IOM approach and implementing its delivery.



Strategic Efficiencies: SOME PRACTICAL EXAMPLES

 

  1. Aligning Governance: Developing shared or simplified governance arrangements can help to deliver efficiencies for all participating agencies, in particular by reducing duplication or overlap in management arrangements. For example, in York, a “Structural Reform” partnership has resulted in the merging of its Local Criminal Justice Boards (LCJB) and Community Safety Partnerships (CSP); aligning governance arrangements and business processes across the county, thereby reducing duplication. The strategic commitment and clarity in governance arrangement has encouraged further alignments, such as the sharing of staff across agencies - i.e. performance officers working together on joint strategic assessments. Where there are oversight boards, steering groups etc, with overlapping agendas in the same area, IOM offers considerable scope for rationalisation, generating considerable savings in time and the need for senior members of staff to commit to overlapping governance arrangements. Local partnerships therefore experienced continuous improvement as a result of aligning governance structures and having a shared vision, with a focus on removing barriers. This in turn resulted in local efficiencies including senior and operational staff time.  
  2. New arrangements; building greater trust:  Stakeholders have identified a range of initiatives that are helping to build trust between agencies and facilitate broad discussions about the aims of local IOM arrangements and its relationship to other areas of public sector provision, such as health, substance misuse and children and families.  Examples include Strategic Boards overseeing the development of IOM from its inception, use of secondments to foster inter-agency understanding, joint process-mapping exercises between key IOM partners and developing a shared ‘language’ or ‘terminology’ for IOM.  
  3. Focus on offenders: Many local areas are starting to take a more holistic view of the factors that increase the risk of offenders re-offending. A strategic vision that establishes the case for joint assessment of offender needs enables delivery of a joint response. An example of this, pursued in both Lancashire and the East of England, is closer working with the health sector to assess offender health needs accurately in order to provide a more appropriate range of accessible health interventions including community based services for women offenders’ mental health needs. An extended knowledge of offenders’ need encourages partners to work with wider range of partners. SOVA (a national mentoring organisation that works with the socially and economically disadvantaged) are part of the IOM arrangements in West Midlands, bringing additional resources from European Social Funds to the partnership, by providing mentors to work with offenders released from short prison sentences. This helps to increase the partnership’s capacity for delivering services, allowing for the management of more offenders.
  4. Joint commissioning: Respondents in the areas visited indicated that as a result of aligned governance arrangements and better understanding of offender needs, they were successful in pooling resources and jointly commissioning services, reducing limitations and isolation in service design, increasing partnership capacity and increasing availability of services that are in demand. Pooled budgets can help change the scope of local IOM arrangements. However, they also have the potential to provide more far-reaching changes, providing an impetus for new models of joint working and changes to organisational behaviour.  



 

CASE STUDY

Pooling of substance misuse budgets


Under the Lancashire IOM arrangements, the pooling of budgets for substance misuse services was agreed upon to enable the more effective arrangement and provision of services. These were to be delivered with regard to existing needs assessments, and utilising the service level agreements in place with providers. 


This arrangement was governed by a partnership agreement which outlined clearly the expectations of each of the partners, clearly setting out risk management approaches, financial and budgetary control requirements, as well as commissioning and governance arrangements. These were developed to enable: 


economies of scale 

responsiveness to local needs across a diverse geographic area, and,

maintaining of standards in service provision. 


This approach has encouraged a greater degree of collaborative work to develop between partnerships providing similar services to local users. The aim of this was to ensure that pooled budgets changed organisational behaviour, increased levels of trust between agencies, and secured broader efficiencies through a more effective allocation of services for example through reduction in duplicative referral and commissioning processes, and reduction in screening and assessments requirements.

  




KEY QUESTIONS THAT AGENCIES AND PARTNERSHIPS MAY WISH TO CONSIDER

1. Are all relevant partners1 involved in local IOM arrangements clear about their roles and responsibilities on all three levels

    • strategic; 
    • design of the local IOM model; and 
    • operational delivery. 

 


2. Has there been mapping of all the local service providers, including voluntary community social enterprise and private sectors, to ensure that the potential partnership arrangements are as comprehensive as possible?


3. Are there other agencies who should be involved? 

Who are they? 

How should they be engaged?

Are there interdependent delivery outcomes?


4. Are the governance arrangements covering the local IOM arrangements as streamlined as they can be, or is there scope for further rationalisation?


5. Are different local strategies/strategic goals aligned to achieve highest impact? 


6. Are all the relevant commissioning processes streamlined?


7. Are there additional efficiency gains to be realised from pooling budgets locally, to streamline approaches and maximise impact?


8. Is there a basis, locally, for assessing the outcomes of IOM interventions? If not, what plans are there to address this?


9. Do the local IOM arrangements allow for quick and effective decisions about what to do and any associated resource deployment or interventions?



THEME 2:  Efficiencies derived from the design of the local approach

As set out in the previous section, a strategic shift towards a joint punishment/ rehabilitation focus means there may be scope for achieving greater efficiencies by avoiding duplication and targeting resources and interventions more appropriately.


With this in mind, local IOM arrangements could practically achieve efficiencies by focusing on:


-who the priority offenders are under local IOM arrangements (i.e. in the judgement of local agencies, or the partnership, are the right offenders targeted?); and


-how these offenders are managed.


Who?


IOM provides a framework for bringing together the full range of programmes and approaches to tackle crime and re-offending in a local area.  In many places, the IOM approach has been built up from the local Prolific and other Priority Offender (PPO) scheme, and incorporates the Drug Interventions Programme (DIP).  Accordingly, the focus often starts with volume, acquisitive offenders, including those with Class A drugs misuse issues.  The value of the IOM approach means it can also be used to plug intervention ‘gaps’ for those offenders who are assessed to be at risk of re-offending but not covered by statutory provision. Therefore, by jointly assessing and agreeing the cohort that need interventions, the greater the opportunities for achieving efficiencies by ensuring resources are targeted on appropriate local priorities. In turn, joint working should mean governance and oversight arrangements are rationalised; freeing up time and other resources.


The IOM approach can also be applied to early intervention and preventative strategies by identifying the multiple needs (not exclusively criminal justice), of offenders and their families. They can often be high (cost) users of local services, but using the IOM approach of applying joined-up and coordinated local services increases the opportunities for making efficiency savings, both in the short and longer terms - by addressing the underlying factors that could lead to offending in the first place and subsequent re-offending e.g. health, education and accommodation needs.


How?


IOM offers the potential for greater opportunity in terms of the concept of “lead professional”.  Priority offenders will be at different stages of the criminal justice process and/or their rehabilitation journey.  Therefore, the broader the partnership engagement in IOM, the greater the potential pool of lead professionals from which to draw upon.  For example, depending on the needs of the offender at any given time, the case manager need not necessarily be a police or probation officer. This helps to free up the time of other professionals, with the potential, therefore, to spread the coverage of the local IOM approach. 



Design Efficiencies: SOME PRACTICAL EXAMPLES

i.Effective targeting: ensuring that there is a comprehensive and regularly updated multi-agency profile of the targeted local offender population will help to ensure that resources invested in local IOM arrangements are focused on those most at risk of re-offending. This will help to maximise the opportunity to reduce crime and re-offending, by ensuring local arrangements are as effective and efficient as possible.  Ensuring that existing approaches, such as the one used for local PPO schemes is targeted on the right offenders, and only while they are the highest risk offenders, will also help to ensure the efficacy of targeting under the local IOM approach.  


ii.Extending reach: A number of areas include offenders sentenced to short custodial sentences (that is, under 12 months or “non-stat”), who would not otherwise receive probation supervision on release, within their IOM arrangements.  


Similarly, a number of areas have extended, or are beginning to extend, their IOM arrangements to include a broader range of offenders than has previously been the case.  For example, in Greater Manchester, violent offenders (including those involved with guns and gangs) are included in the priority IOM cohort.    


In York, IOM and anti-social behaviour case management structures were aligned.  This enabled offenders to obtain access to interventions that they would not have had previously. ASBOs were effectively managed, breaches decreased and the cost to local partnership reduced. The improved access to this information also resulted in saved time for the staff of the local agencies. 


iii.Changing the approach: York has prioritised women offenders within their IOM approach, recognising them as a vulnerable group with specific needs and limited access to appropriate services, with most of them not subject to statutory probation supervision. Extending the partnership approach, and working with the Voluntary and Community Sector to take on the management/lead agency role in respect of these offenders improved their access to appropriate services. Allocated joint case management reduced duplication involving more than one agency case managing an offender and increased effectiveness of the services provided.


iv. Case management.  Some areas have reviewed the process of case managing offenders and identified duplications that they can avoid.  For example, in West Midlands, IOM partner organisations have reduced the number of multi-agency case management meetings that they hold.  In West Yorkshire, joint single case conferences have been introduced to monitor offender progress and, where relevant, find out why interventions for individuals are not working. West Yorkshire plan to have a single care plan for each offender, owned by one case manager. Bristol use a single case management system across partner agencies, where the starting point is to adopt the Probation Service case management system and then further develop it to reflect the available offender “pathways”.


 

CASE STUDY

Examining the managed caseload and delivering broader interventions


Revolution branding was developed within Lancashire to extend the principles of an integrated partnership approach to dealing with a group of offenders previously not worked with.  


Strategic analysis of the offending population and the interventions they were receiving had identified that a key group of offenders were not only responsible for disproportionate amounts of local crime; but that they were also disproportionate users of the local public services, beyond the traditional criminal justice interventions. These offenders typically fluctuated between periods of statutory supervision and no supervision requirements over a period of time. 


This analysis also developed a case study approach to estimate the costs associated with the offending and directed interventions of working with an offender. Using a case study approach, it was highlighted that over a four year period, the costs of crimes committed by an offender were estimated at approximately £73,000, with costs to the magistrates courts of approximately £12,000, and the costs of imprisonment of £74,000 over 4 separate periods of imprisonment.  Over the four year period, the offender was also subject to a wide range of interventions, which amounted to a cost of approximately £157,000. 


Revolution Teams focussed on offenders released from short-term prison sentences, with police led teams working closely with Probation, drug treatment providers as well as a number of other statutory and non statutory agencies in order to assist offenders by providing access to the identified rehabilitative pathways to address their underlying problems. 


The partners involved and interventions delivered were broadened as a result of the initial analysis to enable a wider range of local agencies providing services to deliver these in a more integrated manner. For example, this included joint screening of offender needs with local health providers to deliver more effective, targeted services. 


As re-offending reduces for offenders in the Revolution cohort, the costs associated with their rehabilitation are reduced, as are the costs to society and the criminal justice system of their re-offending. Reductions of 33% in serious acquisitive crimes reported to the police have been observed over the previous 4 years across Lancashire.   



KEY QUESTIONS THAT AGENCIES AND PARTNERSHIPS MAY WISH TO CONSIDER

1.How can the processes and benefits of IOM be further embedded into the mainstream activity of key delivery agencies and wider IOM partners?


2.Are the results of the local profile used to inform which offenders will be prioritised for the appropriate level of interventions? Is the system flexible enough to allow a regular reassessment of the priority groups?


3.Is full use being made of strategic analysis – for example, by undertaking a multi-agency profiling of the local offender population to:


  • understand the risk and harm caused by the range of offenders in the local area;
  • enable an earlier identification of potential future priority offenders;

  • ensure that the IOM arrangements are being utilised effectively by identifying and targeting the most damaging offenders locally;

  • understand the factors that increase the risk to re-offending in order to align and utilise the required appropriate support and interventions; and

  • map the offender’s journey within the IOM arrangements to assess at which stages they will interact with the local agencies involved; to maximise the contribution of those agencies (whether they are directly part of the IOM partnership or not) to avoid duplication and ensure most appropriate case management arrangements.

 


4.Is the IOM approach as comprehensive as it can be to ensure that all offenders are in scope and that best use is made of all existing programmes and approaches in the most coordinated fashion possible?


5.Is there scope for introducing further streamlining and efficiencies into the area’s arrangements for selecting priority offenders?


6.Are there any mechanisms in place, or that can be employed, to help assess:


a) the contribution of service providers: do the local arrangements allow agencies to make the best contribution that they can to the local IOM approach?; and


b) the success or impact of specific interventions?


7.Have existing resources been realigned to ensure the most efficient and effective approach to offender management? 


8.Is there a communication strategy encouraging involvement from wider sectors including opportunities for social investment, mentoring, volunteering, and community engagement?



THEME 3:  Efficiencies in delivery

There may be scope for securing increased efficiencies from the local IOM arrangements by looking at operational issues. This may include examining service delivery or operational structures, i.e. how the business is delivered. 


The opportunity here is to consider moving away from more traditional ways of working, breaking down pre-existing structures or approaches, to work more flexibly and dynamically in partnership and across agency boundaries. This will help both individual agencies and the wider partnership to gain maximum benefit from the time, effort and other resources devoted to the delivery of the local IOM approach. The approach is described by the local partners as “bending” mainstream services around IOM arrangements.


The challenge is the extent to which one agency’s investment benefits the outcomes of another, or across the wider partnership and the extent to which benefits can be shared, taking into account the principles of the Financial Incentives approach.  


All agencies involved in identifying and working with priority offenders will have opportunities to review their own systems and processes, as well as partnership processes, in order to identify business process changes that may deliver efficiency savings.  


Where processes are duplicated in more than one organisation, developing a single, shared process across the partnership should deliver efficiency savings.   In addition, closer joint working and more streamlined processes, with all agencies focused on maximising outcomes should help to ensure that business processes are as effective and efficient as possible.



DELIVERY Efficiencies: SOME PRACTICAL EXAMPLES

i. Appropriate lead professional: The flexibility of the IOM model means that  the professional working with priority offenders could be who local agencies consider to be the most appropriate lead professional at that moment in time, taking account of factors such as:


(a) whether the offender is currently within the criminal justice system, and if so, at what stage (e.g. subject to enforcement action, or serving a sentence etc); 


(b) the extent to which the offender is willing to be, or already is, actively engaged with rehabilitative services; and 


(c)the factors that are linked to the risk of the offender of re-offending.


This will help to ensure that inefficiencies in the arrangements for managing offenders are addressed by assigning the appropriate resource to reducing re-offending. This is about ensuring that the intensity of management is directly related severity of risk, whether or not the offender is subject to statutory probation supervision.  The Ministry of Justice Green Paper “Breaking the Cycle: Effective Punishment, Rehabilitation and Sentencing of Offenders” makes the point that:


“Many of the skills needed for good policing have also proved well-suited to help manage offenders into a law abiding and disciplined way of life.”


This reinforces the point about maximising the efficiencies of the arrangements for managing offenders under local IOM arrangements by ensuring that, at any given time, the most appropriate lead professional manages the offender. 


ii. Joint training:  Increasing the appropriate skill levels of those undertaking the management of offenders, so that they are better able to identify and respond to the offender’s underlying criminogenic needs, will help to ensure the efficacy and efficiency of the local arrangements.  As a practical example of this, in West Midlands, additional training in offender management is provided for police officers entering Offender Management Units.


iii.Improved co-operation.  Several areas are developing arrangements that provide better ‘through the gate’ provision for offenders leaving custody.  For example, as part of local IOM arrangements, a project at HMP Preston - the ‘Short Sentence Pilot’ - involves the IOM team sharing information on offenders before they arrive in prison. This information includes assessments. The advantage of this is that prison-based staff have more time to plan a meaningful programme of work for offenders and, they can do so on the basis of more comprehensive assessment than they are able to undertake within a prison setting. Resettlement plans can be quickly developed for prisoners entering the establishment on short sentences. A team of prison officers and peer mentors work with the offender while they are in custody and a ‘through the gate’ service is provided with community-based volunteer coaches who are supported by professionals then working with the offender after their return to the community, to deliver the resettlement plan.  This is considered an improvement to pre-existing arrangements, not only in securing efficiency savings through more streamlined operations, but also in improving outcomes for the offenders concerned.


In Bristol different agencies involved in the delivery of IOM undertake joint visits to offenders in custody. This reduces inefficiencies associated with booking multiple appointments, multiple journeys and offenders being asked the same questions multiple times.  


In West Midlands, the Wolverhampton Offender Accommodation Forum brings together housing providers on a regular basis. It is designed to enable offenders and ex-offenders to apply for accommodation, floating support or specialist services in Wolverhampton through a single referral point. This has helped not only to assess gaps in housing stock, but also to assess barriers to keeping offenders in housing. As a result of joint work, efficiencies realised from reducing duplication were able to be redirected to the areas where gaps have been identified (such as additional floating support). 


iv.Co-location.  Co-location of key staff is being explored in a number of areas.  For example, in West Yorkshire, IOM is delivered through 5 ‘Hubs’ and staff from police, probation, drug and alcohol services are co-located.  Although there can be some costs associated with co-location where this involves staff working away from their normal operational base, the gains in terms of speedier information exchange, information sharing and facilitating the culture of joint working are generally perceived to outweigh the costs.


Sometimes full co-location of staff from different agencies may not be practical. In some of the areas of the West Midlands, the model of co-location is akin to a ‘one-stop shop’ concept.  For example in Wolverhampton a ‘Tuesday Surgery’ sees a number of criminal justice and voluntary sector organisations co-locating for an afternoon every week, with offenders attending a meeting with their offender manager as part of their sentence also being booked in for a number of consecutive appointments with providers of drug treatment, housing, education, training and employment services.  This is considered to be a more effective and efficient way of ensuring that offenders engage with the services required to address the risks associated with re-offending.


v.Streamlining the selection process.  This relates to the process of identifying a priority cohort.  In most areas, this is a multi-agency function, but the more streamlined and shared the process is, the greater the scope for operational efficiencies. In Bristol a ‘migration meeting’ to discuss joint selection and joint case management of offenders has been established. In West Midlands, partners have developed a single, inter-agency meeting called ‘One Day, One Conversation’ to co-ordinate activity in relation to each offender.   All agencies involved in the offender management are clear of their roles and responsibilities to address offenders’ needs allowing offenders to meet service providers through a series of pre-booked appointments. This reduces number of missed appointments, and allows for more effective information sharing between agencies. These are all examples of more streamlined process, to improve joint working and delivery of outcomes.


vi.Improved information sharing arrangements.  Many areas are exploring ways to share information and intelligence in a more timely fashion, to share it more quickly and to share it between a wider group of partners. This includes sharing data for the purpose of identifying priority offenders; for making more informed and comprehensive assessments of offenders’ needs, resulting in more targeted care plans being developed; and sharing intelligence to help case managers make more informed decisions. For example, in Bristol improved information sharing has led to an improvement in the quality of Pre-Sentence Reports.  Additionally, in Bristol, extending access to court IT systems such as Libra and Exhibit to the IOM team is enabling partners to receive more timely information on court results, to gain a better understanding of extra requirements on sentences, and also to receive updates on adjournments. All of which is improving the efficiency of operational delivery in the area.


vii.Joint sentence plans.  For all statutory offenders’ police and probation offender managers and supervisors are involved in completing an OASys assessment and a joint sentence plan. This can ensure that sentences received for an offender take into account information about their compliance with the offender management services, and also latest assessments of their risk and needs.   



 

CASE STUDY

Co-located prison officer in Bristol


Partnership funding secured the secondment of a senior prison officer post to be co-located within the IOM team for an initial pilot period of two years. This was based on a recognition and desire expressed by the IOM strategic board that continuity of rehabilitative care interventions for statutory and short-sentenced offenders would be improved through direct engagement with the prison service. 


This pilot was viewed successfully and resulted in the prison service mainstreaming this post, and reallocating an additional two prison officers to work within the co-located IOM team. 


The reallocation of these posts to co-location within the IOM team did not incur any additional costs to the prison service beyond those for establishing access at the co-located premises for IT systems. During the pilot period, the partnership funded the secondment of a senior prison officer at a cost of approximately £40,000.


A range of business process improvements to effectiveness were identified through developing this approach. 


There were improvements in the ability of the prison to make decisions about the early release of offenders into the community. This was enabled through better access to information and intelligence about interventions an offender would be receiving in the community, resulting in a greater appreciation of the risk of re-offending that individual may pose.   


Practical benefits such as access to information and real time intelligence were realised by prison officers but also other IOM staff. For instance, intelligence on who offenders associated with or interventions received within prison were now easily available to police and probation case managers and supervisors.  


Continuity of care was enhanced for statutory offenders, as information was available to IOM case managers on the interventions received whilst in prison. Prison officers were also enabled opportunity to input into pre sentence reports and sentence plans so that tailored recommendations could be made and prison interventions directed more appropriately and effectively. 


The co-location of prison officers also contributed to increased effectiveness and efficiency though their ability to arrange access to prisons for IOM staff; this was especially useful in conducting next day prison visits to enable a pre sentence report to be produced, or for establishing contact with offenders prior to their release.  



KEY QUESTIONS THAT AGENCIES AND PARTNERSHIPS MAY WISH TO CONSIDER

1. What scope is there for co-location?


2. Are the benefits of effective information and intelligence sharing between participating agencies fully understood and exploited? 


3. What information is currently shared?


4. What scope is there to enhance the sharing information/intelligence to improve decision making in managing offenders?


5. Do information sharing arrangements cover the full range of partners, in order to secure maximum contribution, both in terms of selection arrangements and in the management of priority offenders?  


6. What processes are in place to inform offenders in a timely manner about the arrangements in place?


7. What process or systems have been put into place so that information about an individual being managed is shared in a timely manner between the agencies involved in managing them?


8. Can referral processes be further streamlined so that access to agreed interventions for priority offenders is timely?


9. What scope is there for improvements in delivery through partners undertaking joint training, shared visits or shared ownership of cases? 


10. Is there scope to go further in aligning risk assessment processes across all partnership agencies?



Please download the PDF at the bottom of this page to view the IOM Efficiency and Effectiveness Template (Annex A).