The number of superintendents recruited through the first round of direct entry recruitment looks set to be extremely small – with one force having rejected every single application to the role.
West Yorkshire Police, who wanted to hire one individual with leadership – but not policing – experience to the role found that none of the 47 people who applied to the job met all their criteria for the shortlisting process.
PoliceOracle.com can also reveal the numbers of shortlisted candidates at the other forces involved in the scheme.
Avon and Somerset Police have chosen just four out of 83 people to pass to the next application stage, to fill their three intended positions.
Nine candidates have passed the first stage to the one post at City of London, eight have been shortlisted in North Yorkshire for two positions, and four for one post in Sussex.
At 72 shortlisted candidates, the Metropolitan Police’s figures are significantly higher than anywhere else. The force is recruiting between five and 15 direct entry superintendents and received seven times as many applications as the next nearest force.
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe recently told PoliceOracle.com he was “impressed” by the calibre of the candidates.
The Met’s candidates could boost the overall numbers of recruits as unsuccessful candidates from one force at national assessment stage could be recruited by another.
Figures for British Transport Police were not yet available as this article went live. The force only received 18 applications for its one post.
West Yorkshire Police say that despite their rejection of all candidates they were pleased with the applications and are willing to take part in future rounds of recruitment through the process.
Human Resources Director Hilary Sykes, said: “We received a high calibre of applicants, with all demonstrating considerable success in their careers to date. Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify a candidate that met our rigorous high standard right across a full spectrum of competencies, so on this occasion we will not be progressing applications to the next level.”
This recruitment process in West Yorkshire is part of a national programme, which is still ongoing, and we may have the opportunity to consider more applicants arising from that. We will also welcome future interest in the next round of direct entry.”
However, Ned Liddemore, Vice Chairman of West Yorkshire Police Federation, said: “How much has it cost them to try and recruit those 47 people when officers and staff are losing their jobs? Yet after they can’t find any suitable candidates, they’re willing to spend the same amount of money doing the same again.”
College of Policing lead for direct entry, Chief Superintendent Nicola Dale, said: “The direct entry programme is challenging with a rigorous assessment framework which must be passed to succeed.
“Where candidates do not meet the entry criteria it is right for the force and the applicant that they are not taken further through the recruitment process.
“The College of Policing will continue to work with police forces taking part in the programme to help them attract talented leaders from outside the service and support them to make a difference to policing and the communities that we serve.”
A Home Office spokesman stressed: “The future success of the police is dependent on attracting the best and brightest to careers in the force. Direct entry at superintendent level is a very demanding challenge.
“Forces have been working with the College of Policing to put in place a robust selection process to ensure that only those who can meet the high standards required are successful.
“It is right that forces only consider those who they are confident can complete the demanding training programme and go on to be excellent police leaders, bringing a fresh perspective and benefitting their colleagues and the public.”
From Police Oracle