As at the 31st October 2022, the PCSO strength fte was 196.22 which is 139.78 fte under the establishment of 336.00 and is a vacancy factor of 41.60%. Of the 196.22 fte vacancies, 86.65 fte are in the role of District PCSO and 53.13 fte are in specialist PCSO roles.
A monthly product is now produced as part of the Neighbourhood Policing review which details the current establishment, strength and vacancy level by department and role. This also includes details of all confirmed leavers on SAP as well as local knowledge such as the number of PCSOs in process to join the regulars and details of PCSOs that have applied for other roles internally or outside of the force.
Attendance and Wellbeing
2022/23 Financial Year to Date (April to October 2022/23)
The table below shows the breakdown of average days lost per person for April to October for each year from 2016 to 2022.
Staff (excluding PCSOs)
22/23 variance to 21/22
For April to October 2022, the average days lost per person for officers is 4.65. This is higher than the same period in both 2021 and 2020. However, it should be noted that whilst this has increased, the average days lost per person of 4.65 is lower than the average for this period between 2016 and 2021 (4.77).
With regards to staff (excluding PCSOs), the average days lost per person is 5.13, which is the highest level of absence for this period over the last 7 years.
For officers, not accounting for 2020/21 which was an outlier due to COVID-19, month on month this financial year to date is broadly in line with the same months in 2021 and 2019. Whilst there are fluctuations, the average hours lost per month for April to October 2022 was 5.35, which is marginally higher than the same period in 2021 (5.14) but lower than the same period in 2019 (5.67).
For staff, the average hours lost per person was higher for April to June than the same months in the previous 3 years and July was higher than the previous 2 years. However, positively, August, September and October are all lower than the same period last year. In addition, the average over the last 3 months is 5.23 (hours lost per person) which is lower than the same period in 2021 (6.30) and similar to 2019 (5.22). If the absence continues to track lower as it has done for the last 3 months, then it is projected that absence will start to reduce which should result in a position similar to last year.
For PCSOs, the average hours lost per person were higher in the months of June through to September 2022 when compared to the same months in the previous 3 years. Whilst absence is high overall, the average hours lost per person in October 2022 of 7.92, is lower than October 2021 (8.70) and is the lowest level of absence over the last 4 months.
Psychological absence continues to account for the highest average days lost per person across all employee groups with respiratory absence accounting for the second highest absence for all groups.
For all employee groups, the highest reason for respiratory absence is predominantly due to COVID-19 related absence (COVID-19, suspected COVID-19, long COVID-19 and COVID vaccine reaction). This accounts for 50.72% of officer respiratory absence, 60.65% of staff respiratory absence and 66.38% of PCSO respiratory absence.
The response to the cost-of-living pressures remains a focus for on-going wellbeing support. The Financial Wellbeing Hub continues to be updated with new information and signposting, and a virtual session is delivered each month in support of individual financial wellbeing with the team being supported with external speakers in this field.
The Occupational Health management referrals to appointment waiting times remain settled with continued monitoring in place in order to review service levels and identify any emerging issues. The new Occupational Health Adviser Team Leader continues to review case management activity, efficient triage of referrals and provide first line support to the Occupational Health Adviser team. Process developments and enhancements have continued with this post now being in place including the review of the referrals process and the management outcome report, in order to support line managers effectively.
The annual flu vaccination programme commenced in late October, in support of winter health, with vaccination clinics being held around the county. In total, 687 have been administered with further mop-up clinics being scheduled for November 2022. Of note, where an individual is entitled to a free NHS vaccination, our provider has not been using our ‘purchased’ vaccination and, although we purchased 700 vaccinations for the internal programme it is likely this will be exceeded as, to date, 180 vaccinations have been provided as NHS vaccines. The final scheduled clinics conclude w/c 7/11/22, with follow up sessions to be scheduled dependant on the remaining vaccines unused.
The Health Surveillance team remain focussed on recruitment medicals in support of the Police Officer Uplift Programme with some resourcing and demand challenges in this area. Vacancies are now being recruited to and service levels should be maintained, once these new post holders are in place.
The counselling team continue to support the organisation with both proactive and reactive services including 2502 individuals attending the Inspire You 2 Mental Health sessions in this period. The ever-popular Feel Well Live Well and Feel Well Live Well leaders programmes and planning is underway in support of the Investigator Wellbeing activity following the Peel assessment findings.
The virtual wellbeing sessions continue to be an effective way to engage with large numbers of people with 9223 attendees across the 280 sessions run to date (02/11/22) from both Kent Police and Essex Police.