A report on Offender Management in
An inspection led by
HM Inspectorate of Probation
Hertfordshire Probation Area had faced particular challenges in working to improve
performance. It was against a backdrop of significant underperformance, a change of
chief officer, and major policy implementation initiatives from the centre that our
Offender Management Inspection fell. It was to the credit of the Board, senior
management team and staff that they had prepared diligently for the inspection and
been open to its findings.
It was clear that the area still had some distance to travel in implementing the national
offender management model. Whilst there was clear evidence of practice improvement,
problems with staffing structures and tiering of cases would inhibit further progress
Sentence planning needed to be brought centre stage and a correct balance established
between meeting offending-related needs through planned delivery of interventions and
protecting the public. As an area Hertfordshire needed to become more outcome-
focused, working towards realistic progress for offenders. Some Risk of Harm work had
clearly improved from previous inspections, although the job was not yet done. The
direction of travel was positive and there was evidence of significant steps forward.
The Board, managers and staff were building a new culture of commitment to quality.
Changes in the senior management team had revitalised this process and we identified
an encouraging energy and commitment to bring about further improvements.
HM Chief Inspector of Probation
We would like to express our thanks to the Hertfordshire Probation Board, its managers
and staff for the considerable assistance received in enabling the inspection to proceed
smoothly. Without their help, most especially in arranging a complicated programme of
interviews with offender managers, the work could not have been completed