West Midlands: Reducing cost & time to hire

After a period of limited recruitment activity for the West Midlands Police, TMP were asked to reshape and execute a recruitment campaign for Police Officers. We were excited to use our collective capabilities to create and deliver a total talent solution using assessment design and delivery alongside candidate management. Critical to the success of this project was the design and implementation of quality, robust and unbiased selection tools.

The Challenge

West Midlands Police needed to recruit 450 Police Officers over 18 months. But the number of Officers we needed to attract wasn’t the only challenge. The hiring drive came after Police Officer recruitment had been suspended for the last five years.

They anticipated high volumes of candidates and required a cost-effective and objective method of identifying the best quality candidates to take to interview. During their previous recruitment campaigns, they had also highlighted that candidates often reached the final selection stages with very unrealistic expectations of what it was like to work as a police officer. Our challenge was to find the best way to process high volumes of applications, very efficiently, identify the highest performing candidates whilst confidently dealing with diversity.

The Solution

One of our first recommendations from the ‘discover’ phase was to introduce an SJT which would not only objectively measure the behaviours required for the role, but also provide a realistic job preview for candidates and ensure they truly understand the role.

During the ‘design’ phase we wanted to ensure that the SJT was inclusive and supported the recruitment of BME candidates. By conducting adverse impact analysis and by closely monitoring the performance of the SJT, we were able to tweak and finely adjust the wording of individual items to ensure the test was an inclusive assessment tool.

 

"TMP have helped deliver a modern and rigorous assessment and selection process, which has delivered both high-quality candidates and cost-effectiveness. The project represented a significant reputational issue for West Midlands Police and it needed to maintain the trust and confidence of the Community. TMP have approached the project in a true spirit of partnership and the relationship developed between ourselves has added real value to this very successful campaign."
Chris Rowson, Head of HR, West Midlands Police

Benefits and Results

The campaign is ongoing but the results are proving impressive. TMP were able to deliver improvements in the process to not only speed it up but also find the best candidates against very tight budgetary constraints. In fact, we were able to save West Midlands Police around £500 per hire.

The SJT proved to be a valuable component of the recruitment process we designed and delivered. It helped to reduce the high volumes of applications received with the minimum of manual intervention. Time to hire was slashed, from more than 12 weeks under the old recruitment process to eight weeks.

Candidates passing the final assessment centre were found to be high potential recruits, ably suited to meeting the ever-changing needs of the WMP; and these recruits became the proportionally highest represented on the Fast Track Programme for Serving Constables in the UK.