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Change To Met PS To Insp Process

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This isn't a 'change' to the process, merely another hurdle to navigate for those of us who thought, in a moment of weakness, that sitting for promotion was a good idea.


The problem has been coming for some considerable time now and is directly attributable to the severe lack of sergeants needed to support neighbourhood policing and the supervision of PCSOs.


OSPRE II was an absolute farce, and, having been discredited, meant that too few constables were eligible for promotion and resulted in many temporary promotions of unqualified officers and the Met, and others, running more than 1 OSPRE I exam each year to increase the numbers of officers to promote.


In order to stop the OSPRE II problem they introduced a process called TOWBAR which basically means that you pass the written exam (Part I) and then apply for promotion.  If successful (which most people were) you were then assessed in the workplace for 12 months and then substantively promoted, if deemed suitable.


This produced, and continues to produce, a lage number of qualified PCs for promotion and all is well with the world, HOWEVER, OSPRE II worked well for the Sgt. to Insp. process as it limited the numbers eligible for promotion quite drastically, due to it being a useless system, but the point is, it kept the number of sgts. available for promotion to a manageable number.


The Met did not want TOWBAR for the Insp. process but the Home Office directed that if it was good enough for PC to Sgt. then it was good enough for Sgt. to Insp.  So, for the last 2 years all you have had to do is pass Part I to apply for promotion under TOWBAR.  This means that in the Met there are currently over 1000 sgts. qualified for promotion.


In October 2006 over 700 of these applied for promotion and the Met set very stringent criteria for the OCU Commanders to consider, and objectively assess, to those applying.  They stressed that there were very limited vacancies (estimated at 120-180) and that only those officers deemed 'exceptional' should be put forward for selection.  No figures were given but an indication was that about 15% of officers would normally fit the 'exceptional' category.


In the main the OCU Commanders then patently failed to show any leadership, gumption, ability to make difficult decisions, ability to manage disappointment, ability to follow directions or any other qualities that one would have hoped made them fit for promotion to their exhalted levels in the first place!  And they did this by more or less recommending 100% of their respectives workforces for promotion in possibly the largest buck passing episode ever recorded.


Only 3 OCUs applied any sort of filter process to the applications and 647 sgts. were put forward to the next stage.  The Met then told the OCU Commanders this was not acceptable and directed that they were to weed this number down to more manageable levels.  This didn't apply to the OCUs that had applied the directions in the first place and collectively the remainder scaled the number down to..........wait for it............this is good............really, really good................644!!


So the Met have had to come up with a system to weed this number down to the 180 or so that they need.  And that, dear reader, is what the Oracle post refers to above, a further examination of ability, based on the complete inability of senior managers in the Met to do their job properly in the first place.


So what do we have to do?  Write a report to a Superintendent and document your solving of a couple of problems.


This will generate just under 2000 reports which then have to be assessed in some way to whittle the numbers down, and exactly who is going to do this, and how, is yet to be made public.  For there to be any validity in this process they will have to use exams that have been tried, tested, verified and are open to independent scrutiny to avoid complaints etc. and I am unaware of any exam of this type having been used since the K & Rs of the early 80s.


I'm afraid that there is only one word for this examination approach and that is 'Lottery', I cannot see how this can determine the suitabililty, or otherwise, of applicants, who have jumped through a number of hoops already, for promotion when their OCU Commanders have failed to provide them with any realistic support.


In common with a number of my colleagues I regularly write reports on behalf of Superintendents to submit to their bosses as their own work, and decision making processes are second nature to any supervisory police officer, so this isn't about getting it right, it's about getting it the way the exam setter wants it, and those are completely different things.


For my money the Met should have sanctioned any OCU Commander that failed in their duty to follow directions and then we wouldn't be in this mess.


Oh, well, looks like I'll be a sgt. for a while longer yet Unhappy
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  • 1 month later...

Read the insp update on aware.....seems to be no point in studying whatsoever. And even if you do, the only thing to do would be go to counties or City.

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  • 2 weeks later...

good grief ....... nothing ever changes does it ? I was held up in promotion having passed the first ever PC - PS part I and 2 ,and then the all day Met assessment centre for i think about two years ...... the famous "moratorium" on promotion ......... then you get a change in policy ,and anyone getting made up, and then again it grinds to a halt ! Sad really !!!   

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