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Diversity Application Data and Force Representation
The table below shows the total number of new police constable applications received broken down by standard entry and the bespoke detective Investigate First Programme for 2019/20, 2020/21, 2021/22 and 2022/23 financial year to date. This is also broken down by ethnicity and gender:
The figures show that between 1st April 2022 and 30th October 2022 the force received a total of 1389 applications. For information, since the force reopened the traditional IPLDP entry route, a total of 253 applications have been received (18.21% of the total 1389).
Of the 1389 total applications, 177 applications were from ethnic minority candidates, which equates to 12.74% of all applications. This is higher than the ethnic minority applications in the three previous full financial years and is higher than both the current ethnic minority officer position (3.62% as at 31st October 2022) and the economically active population (6.73%).
With regards to females, of the 1389 application, a total of 551 were from females, which is 39.67% and a higher proportion currently than the three previous full financial years.
The Investigate First Programme continues to attract a high proportion of female applications. Of the 344 Investigate First applications so far in 2022/23, 56.40% were from female candidates, which is an increase compared to 2021/22 (55.94%) and marginally lower than both 2020/21 and 2019/20. The proportion of Investigate First applications from Ethnic minority candidates has also increased slightly when compared to 2021/22 and is still relatively strong (10.76% of all Investigate First applications).
In respect of the current recruitment pipeline, as of 31st October 2022 there are 575 applications in process. Of the 575 candidates, 249 (43.30%) are female and 57 (9.91%) are ethnic minority. There was a reduction in applications in October 2022, with 146 applications received, including 48 in the week of 10th October 2022. Of the 146, there were 19 (13.01%) ethnic minority applications. It should be noted, that whilst the last months data is promising, not all individuals will be successful and will fall out of process at various stages. However there continues to be no adverse impact on ethnic minority candidates at the stages of the process within the force’s control. This will continue to be monitored at the Strategic Application Assurance Group.
Section 5 provides further information regarding Local and National Work to Promote recruitment.
Force Representation Data: Ethnicity & Gender
As at 31st October 2022, there were 149 (3.62%) ethnic minority officers in force. This is the same headcount when compared to the last update as at 31st July 2022 but a minor reduction in proportion of the workforce, due to the overall higher headcount. With regards to female officers, the headcount is currently 1408, which equates to 34.22% and represents the highest ever number and proportion of female officers in force. This has increased when compared to the last update as at 31st July 2022 (1343 / 33.85%).
With regards to recruitment for April to October 2022/23, of the total 322 recruits (all entry routes), 12 were ethnic minority (3.73%) and 123 were female (38.20%).
In terms of new recruits, the October intake comprised of 124 students, 5 of whom were ethnic minority (4.03%) and 56 were female (45.16%). The number of ethnic minorities joiners in this intake was lower than expected as some candidates are still in pre-employment checks and now are being progressed towards the January 2023 intake.
Currently (as of week commencing 31st October 2022) there are 10 ethnic minority individuals in process for the January 2023 intake of 130 (7.69%).
It remains necessary to continue to increase the proportion of applications from the widest range of communities. The Positive Action Team and HR Collaboration, known as the Outreach Task Force (OTF) has been active since the 8 November 2021 and will remain in place until the 31st March 2023. The aim of the OTF is to develop and deliver Positive Action and other activities that aim to attract and increase police officer applications from underrepresented groups, with a specific focus on Ethnic minority and female applications.
The below section evidence key activity that has taken place:
August month of outreach action: The forces recruitment van was deployed daily to engage with communities and deliver marketing materials in high footfall and diverse locations in Kent, Southeast London and the M25 corridor. Over 100 locations/venues were visited with some on multiple occasions. At least 396 people were engaged with, including 135 (34%) Ethnic minority individuals, and 189 females. In addition, 6 Pride Events were attended, and on the 3rd August 2022 a virtual recruitment event hosted by the Chief Constable took place (40 participants). The OTF were able to deliver these enhanced activities with the support of the Schools Team, D&I Academy and Recruitment Ambassadors.
During September and October 2022, the OTF delivered 68 careers outreach events (53 physical and 15 virtual). This has led to engagement with 842 individuals, 229 (27%) of which were ethnic minorities and 330 (39%) females
Ethnic minority Positive Action Engagement Programme (PEAP): The programme launched in April 2022 and was designed to attract ethnic minority individuals who were thinking of applying but not ready to. The programme offers 1-2-1 support, guidance, signposting and access to a Senior Interview and Fitness Test workshops prior to application.
As at the 2nd November 22 the programme had 16 existing members. Of which, 14 of those are previously unsuccessful candidates who benefit from developments and 8 of these will be eligible to re-apply between now and the 31st December 2022. The normal eligibility waiting time for re application post rejection is 3 to 6 months, this programme helps keep unsuccessful candidates engaged and encourages them to reapply. For information, 3 members have already re applied.
Recruitment Pipeline: The OTF continues to work with the Corporate Recruitment Team and Business Services on a weekly basis to identify any service delivery, process or other issues that could create adverse impact and loss of Ethnic minority police officer candidates from the recruitment pipeline. For the period 1st May 2022 to the 31st October 2022 previously 100 rejected Ethnic minority candidates have been contacted by the OTF and offered post rejection support through the PEAP.
The Positive Action Team (PAT) use Positive Action to inspire, encourage and support officers to take part in progression activities and access available support. Key activities include:
Mentoring: A review of the Forces Mentoring Scheme in May 22 to identified opportunities to attract more diverse mentors, and mentees taking part in the scheme. As a result, new interventions have included the introduction of a monthly mentoring meeting, the development and delivery of a new process to ensure effective and efficient administration of the scheme, enhanced CPD for Mentors and a communication strategy to attract new mentors, and mentees in terms of volume, and diversity.
All new processes were in place by the 26th August 2022 when the new ‘Develop You’ page was launched. To date 22 new mentee applications were received. Of the new mentee applications 8 of these were from females (36.4%) and 2 from ethnic minority individuals (9.1%).
All Together Better (ATB): On the 15th August 2022 the Positive Action Team launched ATB and the new internal Positive Action Insite pages. ATB is a Home Office Uplift Campaign that aims to raise the profile and importance of Positive Action within police forces.
The campaign was promoted via Spotlights, an all-force email, on Yammer and through Positive Action SLT Leads. A Positive Action Quiz, Managers Tool Kit and Positive Action Video were shared. The Positive Action Team also delivered briefing sessions to the forces Positive Action SLT leads and hosted 6 Positive Action virtual events (89 people took part).
The Positive Action Team continue to deliver events including, Discovery Support Event to inspire registration for exams and encourage progression, a series of Positive Action focus groups to discuss barriers to progression. Positive Action Fast Track and High Potential Discovery Event (PC-INSP) to encourage officers to learn more about Fast Track opportunities and dispel the myths and Positive Action and Diversity & Inclusion sessions with new recruits at the Kent Police College. More events are planned.