Responding to the publication of HMICS Independent Assurance Review of Police Scotland’s Call Handling, SPA Chief Executive John Foley said:
“The SPA accepts the recommendations of the full HMICS review of Police Scotland’s call handling. We welcome the assurances it provides about the continuing quality of service being delivered to the public alongside this very considerable programme of change and investment. The report acknowledges the work that has taken place since publication of the interim report to strengthen management, resources and planning of this major programme. Where further areas for improvement have been identified, both in the completion of this programme and in terms of wider learning, the SPA will ensure they are addressed and implemented.
“Stronger programme management and governance, broader oversight of ICT investment and outcomes, and more independent assurance checks at key decision-making stages are at the heart of that approach. As an immediate practical step, the SPA will ensure that arrangements are put in place for an independent gateway review to be carried out to inform SPA oversight and assurance before any decision to progress with the remaining phases of call handling modernisation is sought by Police Scotland, or taken by the SPA. While rightly there will continue to be oversight of the people aspects of the programme through our dedicated human resources committee, I can confirm that a strategic decision to progress to full implementation will only be taken following detailed consideration by the full SPA board.
“In terms of the wider lessons to be learned, the principle of strengthening oversight arrangements around investment in technology and broader transformation programmes has already been approved by the SPA board. The details of how that will be taken forward are now being further considered within the review of police governance now underway. Due to report by March 2016 the outputs and recommendations of that will ensure that SPA has the most robust governance arrangements possible in place for the future.”