Rationalising Crime Calls - a Study of Police and Customer Interaction

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    This research examines the change in resource deployment through the introduction of the Demand Management and Tasking Unit (DMTU) within Gwent police. It analyses the work carried out by the DMTU in its attempt to rationalise the delivery of policing services to the public. With increasing pressure being placed on already finite policing resources, it has become increasingly difficult for Gwent police to attend each call by deploying a physical resource such as police officers or police community support officers (PCSOs). In light of this need to change, Gwent police have developed the DMTU to investigate a specific and limited number of crimes by telephone, in the anticipation that they can reduce pressure on 'front line' police staff. The study assesses the impact of this change on policing services, police officers and the public.

    This is achieved through a variety of research methods employed throughout the course of this study, spanning a three year period. Methods included interviewing and spending time within the DMTU at Gwent police headquarters, along with utilising questionnaires to gauge perceptions and opinions of the unit's introduction and implementation. Ethical considerations, strengths and weaknesses and operational difficulties whilst researching an organisation such as the police are also discussed.

    Results indicate that there seems a healthy and directed focus on customers within the DMTU, with contact procedures and processes designed in a way that is convenient and offers the maximum flexibility to victims of crime. Positively, the creation of the DMTU has also improved resource allocation and the implications of this is noteworthy for Gwent police, as financially alone, there are significant savings to be considered without the need to compromise the quality of service provided to customers. Disappointingly, however, it must be noted that there is little evidence of a partnership approach being adopted routinely within the DMTU. Considering that the DMTU is in contact with over 20% of all crime victims across Gwent, the impact of training and intelligence sharing shortcomings may be significant and should be of a major concern to those overseeing the future of police/customer relations. Consideration of the future landscape of contact management for policing across Britain also considered.
    Date of AwardMar 2012
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorColin Rogers (Supervisor), Frederick Blakemore (Supervisor) & David Hillier (Supervisor)


    • Police - Wales

    Cite this