Impact and Insights Report 2020/21


“As a police officer, you can change lives, you can change communities and you can really make a difference.”

Police Constable Emma Adams,

National Graduate Leadership Programme Participant, Hertfordshire Constabulary.


Alongside their dedicated colleagues, Police Now participants are working to create safer communities and build the public’s confidence in policing.

Police Now holds all participants to account on behalf of the communities they serve, with participants required to present evidence of impact in their communities and evidence-based problem solving to their colleagues and peers at Police Now Impact Events. Police Now participants are working on a wide range of issues, from dealing with and reducing demand associated with anti-social behaviour, to disrupting county lines, tackling domestic abuse, child sexual exploitation and serious youth violence.

Topics on which National Graduate Leadership Programme participants focused their Impact Assessments (2015-2019)1


Anti-Social Behaviour

Partnership Working



Confidence in Police

Crime Prevention


Burglary, Theft or Robbery



Mental Health


Organised Crime

Knife Crime

Vehicle Crime

“Part of the message of Police Now is impact from day one, and I think that’s something that really is true.”

Detective Constable Jacob Reeves,

National Graduate Leadership Programme Alumnus, Cambridgeshire Constabulary.


Independently peer reviewed analysis suggests that the targeted problem- solving work of Police Now participants is translating into ‘green shoots’ of impact on crime and anti-social behaviour, but there remains more to do.

Police recorded crime data was analysed from five partner force areas for our second cohort of National Graduate Leadership Programme participants’ 22-month deployment period (October 2016 – July 2018) and compared to the 22-months prior to this cohort joining the programme (October 2014 – July 2016), to control for any seasonal variation in crime. The independently peer reviewed results show an 11.7% reduction in anti-social behaviour in the communities where Police Now participants were posted, compared to a 7.2% reduction in communities without a Police Now participant2.

Reduction in recorded anti-social behaviour observed in communities where Police Now’s 2016 cohort worked


Communities with a Police Now participant


Communities without a Police Now participant


Analysis suggests that Police Now participants typically work in more deprived communities that are characterised by higher levels of crime and anti-social behaviour, and lower public confidence in the police3.

Using data from the Indices of Multiple Deprivation 2015 (IMD4) across five of our partner forces, analysis compared the average relative deprivation score in the communities where our second cohort of National Graduate Leadership Programme participants were posted to the average relative deprivation score for Lower Layer Super Output Areas (LSOAs) in the partner force. This analysis showed that the areas where Police Now officers work were, on average, considerably more deprived than the force average.

Average IMD score in LSOAs with a Police Now Officer and the overall average IMD score for LSOAs in the force


How are you creating positive change in your role?

What’s the role of a Neighbourhood officer like?

How are you creating positive change in the role?

How are you creating positive change in your role?

How are you creating positive change in the role?

What’s the Neighbourhood officer role like?


Case study analysis of West Midlands Police indicates positive trends in recorded crime and anti-social behaviour in the communities where Police Now’s second cohort of participants were posted. The results showed:

What conditions led to this visible impact?

1. West Midlands Police worked with Police Now to ensure the effective implementation of the programme and provided participants with a strong understanding of force context.

West Midlands Police led sessions designed to equip participants with an understanding of force priorities and their strategic transformation plan, which informed participants’ objectives.
2. Participants were posted to some of the most deprived areas.

Participants were posted to some of the most deprived neighbourhoods in the West Midlands area with the majority being posted to neighbourhoods that fall within the 10% most deprived in the country (based on IMD 2015).
3. Before arriving in force, participants were prepared with localised knowledge resulting in a strong understanding of the issues facing their communities.

Participants were able to build relationships with their force Syndicate Leads and were provided with information from West Midlands Police. This enabled participants to contextualise their learning alongside knowledge of the problems facing the communities they were responsible for and accountable to.
4. Participants collaborated effectively and creatively, sharing knowledge, and taking personal responsibility for problem-solving.

Participants took personal responsibility for their communities by adopting new, creative approaches to problem-solving. Action Learning Sets, group coaching, and problem-solving forums created the opportunity to share, collaborate and innovate on community issues. Examples of participant work included:
5. A strong sense of cohort cohesion and pride underpinned participants’ motivation for making a difference.

The cohort developed a strong sense of cohesion and friendship which lasted the entirety of the programme and beyond. They were proud to be part of West Midlands Police and their first cohort of Police Now participants.


Previous analysis comparing locations with a Police Now participant found significant improvements in young people’s (16-24 year olds) confidence in the police (+17%), exceeding improvements in communities without a Police Now participant (+3%) over the same period5.

Important methodological note

We remain committed to measuring the impact of participants on crime, anti-social behaviour and public perceptions of policing in partnership with independent analysts, both as a means of holding ourselves accountable for our activities and informing programme improvements. This is despite the widely acknowledged challenges of measuring impact6, limited availability of data on public confidence in policing at a neighbourhood level and the challenge of finding well matched comparison communities7. It is important to note that in the absence of a fully randomised design and without controlling for the other factors, the results presented here preclude any firm ‘cause and effect’ statements of impact8. The results in this report (and indeed previous reports and website materials) should therefore be treated with caution due to limitations with the data and methodology. This includes, for example, that police recorded crime and anti-social behaviour statistics can be affected by changes in recording practices and they only cover the incidents that come to the attention of the police. Further, it is important to note that like all officers, Police Now participants are subject to abstraction and often work on problem-solving activities beyond the boundaries of their dedicated neighbourhood area.


  1. Police Now Impact Library. Internal analysis of most commonly tagged categories across 1516 case studies as of 03/07/2019. Note: % of all Impact Library content with that specific topic tag. Multiple tags are typically assigned to a project (hence total exceeds 100%). ↩

  2. Police recorded crime data for England and Wales (2014-2018). Whilst these independently peer reviewed results should be treated with caution in the absence of a fully randomised design, and noting the limitations with police recorded crime data, the results provide encouragement that we are beginning to see the positive impact envisioned in our Theory of Change. ↩

  3. See London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime Public Voice Dashboard. Available online here. ↩

  4. The IMD is the official measure of relative deprivation for small areas (neighbourhoods) in England (higher score = higher deprivation). Seven main types of deprivation are considered in the Index of Multiple Deprivation 2015, including: income, employment, education, health, crime, access to housing and services, and living environment. These are combined to form the overall measure of multiple deprivation. The IMD data is an open source data that can be downloaded from the Gov UK website. ↩

  5. The results preclude cause and effect statements and should be treated with caution due to the relatively small number of survey respondents aged 16-24 during the period in which our first cohort of National Graduate Leadership Programme participants were deployed. ↩

  6. Please refer to London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (2017). Police Now Cohort 1: Final Evaluation Report. Available online here. ↩

  7. Police Now and partner forces post participants to the most deprived communities typically characterised by the highest crime rates. Police Now communities have been described as ‘unusual outliers’, in this regard. See, for example, Hales, G. (2018). Reflecting on the MOPAC Evaluation of Police Now’s First Cohort: Police Foundation. Available online here. ↩

  8. This analysis does not and cannot claim that the changes in police recorded crime or public confidence is a direct outcome of the presence (or not) of Police Now participants. The analysis was unable to control for the many other factors which could impact changes in recorded crime or public confidence during the analytic period. ↩

Devon & Cornwall Police

Police Now | Devon & Cornwall Constabulary

Shaun Sawyer

Chief Constable

National Graduate Leadership Programme

Cohorts: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
No. of police officers enrolled: 8

National Detective Programme

Cohorts: —— —— —— —— 2019 2020
No. of police officers enrolled:

Case studies: