Create your own Brochure

[Skip to content]

Search our Site
Monday 23 April 2018

Process Evaluation of Five Integrated Offender Management Pioneer Areas

Version: KR/RF/11/1.0

Author: Professor Paul Senior, Kevin Wong, Alex Culshaw, Dan Ellingworth, Caroline O'Keeffe and Linda Meadows, Hallam Centre for Community Justice; Ecotec Research & Consultancy; and ZCK Consultancy on behalf of Sheffield Hallam University


May 2011


This information is also available on the Ministry of Justice website:




The views expressed are those of the authors and are not necessarily shared by the Ministry of Justice (nor do they represent Government policy).

© Crown Copyright 2011.

Extracts from this document may be reproduced for non-commercial purposes on condition that the source is acknowledged.

ISBN: 978 1 84099 466 7






At the time of the research, Integrated Offender Management (IOM) was the most developed attempt to operationalise the concept of end to end offender management. An IOM approach aimed to co-ordinate all relevant agencies to deliver interventions for offenders identified as warranting intensive engagement, whatever their statutory status. At the core of IOM was the delivery of a managed set of interventions, sequenced and tailored to respond to the risks and needs of the individual. These interventions had the key aim of disrupting the offender’s criminal activity and thereby reducing their re-offending. The Home Office (HO) and Ministry of Justice (MoJ) jointly issued guidance on how IOM could develop. However, definition of the approach was left to local discretion. The Government Policy Statement (Home Office, 2009b) suggested:

  • IOM was to be the strategic umbrella that brought together agencies across government to prioritise intervention with offenders causing crime in their locality;
  • IOM was to build on and expanded current offender-focused and public protection approaches, such as Prolific and other Priority Offender (PPO), Drug Interventions Programme (DIP) and Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA); and
  • IOM should relate to all agencies engaged in Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs) and Local Criminal Justice Boards (LCJBs) with direction and support in bringing together the management of repeat offenders into a more coherent structure.


Government funding was provided to six pioneer sites in 2008/09 and five of these, Avon and Somerset, Lancashire, Nottinghamshire, West Midlands and West Yorkshire, became the object of this evaluation.1 This was commissioned by the HO and MoJ in July 2009. The aim was to conduct a process evaluation across five pioneer sites to:

  • assess whether implementation of IOM was as intended;
  • identify the approaches to IOM implementation; and,
  • identify the opportunities and barriers to effective implementation of IOM approaches to capture the lessons learnt.


Since the evaluation took place, the political and criminal justice landscape has changed somewhat, supporting a more locally driven approach which can draw on learning directly from the pioneers shaped and delivered locally.




The fieldwork was primarily qualitative and included:

  • interviews with 48 strategic stakeholders and 40 offenders;

  • focus groups with 32 offender managers (OMs); and

  • workshops with 14 strategic managers and 107 officers from partner agencies.


Police National Computer (PNC) and local caseload data were analysed to describe the characteristics of offenders targeted under IOM at each site.




Defining IOM

Many respondents described IOM as evolving towards a clearly articulated concept, echoing the definitions provided in the policy statement above (Home Office, 2009b). However, although many stakeholders mentioned common features, no definitive model emerged. Stakeholders generally defined IOM as a way of joining up the management of offenders to enhance co-ordination and respond to risk and need. Some frontline staff reported IOM in terms of extending offender management to non-statutory2 offenders (NSOs), and (at one site) offenders (and those at risk of offending) with little or no previous offender management.3 During the evaluation, IOM evolved into a more streamlined operation which integrated the management of PPO and DIP offenders with NSOs.


Characteristics of IOM within the pioneer sites

IOM development built on pre-existing offender management schemes such as the PPO programme, DIP and national initiatives such as reducing re-offending plans and PPO cohort refresh. Local priorities, such as local area agreement (LAA) targets extending offender management to encompass a wider cohort of offenders, also impacted on IOM. In addition to pioneer funding, the sites secured funds from CSPs and other sources. West Yorkshire established a countywide IOM in 2008, while other sites focused on a city or police division, expanding this over 2009/10. PNC analysis revealed the sites were targeting prolific offenders. Of those offenders recorded by the pilot sites, the average number of convictions ranged from 46 to 70 (with an average number of previous primary offences from 17 to 22). Caseload data revealed considerable variance between sites in the proportion of PPOs and NSOs included in IOM.



Each site developed structures that reflected their own contexts and situations. CSPs exercised significant influence on the strategy and delivery of IOM, whereas the involvement of countywide LCJBs was variable. The dual and parallel responsibilities of these bodies confused governance and produced a multiple layering of authority. Two tier authorities demonstrated particular difficulties in maintaining a unified approach to IOM. Regionally, Directors of Offender Management (DOMs) and Government Offices (GOs) were generally not heavily involved but were supportive.


Joined up working

The effective delivery of IOM was dependent on multi-agency participation and a willingness to resolve sometimes conflicting inter- and intra-agency agendas. Stakeholders reported this was achieved through close links between strategy and operation and clarifying agency roles. It was reported co-locating staff facilitated cultural change, case management processes, knowledge transfer and information sharing. Operational leadership was contested at some sites between police and probation. The police were generally regarded as the main agency whereas probation at some sites had found it more difficult to engage due to resource constraints and the demands of national standards. Prison, Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) and other local and central government agencies including voluntary and community sector (VCS) agencies were integral to, and had enhanced, IOM delivery at some sites. Other sites had not yet managed to engage them fully. Some sites had committed considerable resources to developing information sharing protocols and IT systems with mixed results.


Managing the offender

The approaches to managing offenders across sites reflected the national ASPIRE4 case management model and comprised designating a ‘lead professional’ (the right officer with the right skills) from probation, police or VCS, a ‘carrot and stick’ approach offering support, intervention and disruption, (of potential further offending), managing compliance, and flexible intensity of engagement. It was reported by many stakeholders that selection was managed via multi-agency decision-making. The intensity and focus of interventions was managed via a prioritization process. A critical element was the extended role of the police in intelligence gathering, pathway support, disruption and enforcement. Many police respondents viewed this positively although it produced some tensions with their force colleagues due to their shift away from enforcement activities.


Perceived impact of IOM

All stakeholders were conscious of the need for, and difficulties of, demonstrating success in reducing re-offending. Many agencies reported other incremental success criteria such as improvements in social functioning, sustainable housing and gaining employment, and improved public confidence. Some strategic stakeholders reported operational efficiencies through better targeting of resources and reducing duplication of effort. Many front line staff reported benefits in terms of more co-ordinated interventions between operational and IOM police staff, access to information, dynamic selection processes, extended roles, flexibility of practice and changes to working cultures. Most of the offenders interviewed were positive about IOM, even NSOs who were not legally required to participate. However, those who engaged were receptive to support and had a desire to change their lives.



The enthusiasm and commitment to IOM from local stakeholders was critical to IOM development and resulted from encouraging local development free from national prescription. Nonetheless, there were barriers to implementation due to differences in defining, governing and delivering IOM. Sites also had problems in expanding their approaches consistently. To address these issues, it is recommended Government should support an agenda which enables local areas to:

  • define and develop IOM, targeting offenders based on high risk and high need irrespective of statutory status;

  • support local statutory agencies in realigning resources to these offenders;

  • provide guidance on case management and data management; and

  • encourage agencies to develop local strategies fostering local ownership and commitment.


Locally agencies should:

  • establish shared leadership and governance with LCJBs and CSPs. LCJBs could take county level responsibility for strategy, consistent practice between CSPs, and countywide resourcing of IOM. CSPs could take responsibility for local strategy, operational delivery and local resourcing of IOM;

  • establish joint matrices and processes for the selection and de-selection of offenders and sequencing of IOM interventions responsive to changing needs and priorities;

  • establish co-location built on existing arrangements;

  • establish inter- and intra-agency training to embed learning, cultural and operational change; and

  • invest in IOM to deliver at an optimal level and realign resources to sustain delivery.



1. Context

Integrated Offender Management (IOM) was, at the time of writing, the most developed attempt to date to operationalise the concept of end to end offender management. At its best an IOM approach aimed to co-ordinate all relevant agencies to deliver interventions for offenders identified as warranting intensive engagement, whatever their statutory status. It also sought to ensure, by support and disruption (of potential further offending), the continued commitment by offenders to engage in interventions offered with the express purpose of reducing further offending.


The development of IOM was informed by:

  • resettlement strategies in 2002–3 (Senior, 2003) to improve and co-ordinate provision for adult offenders released from short-term custody (less than 12 months) not subject to statutory supervision by probation;
  • the Carter Report (Carter, 2003) which criticized the “silo mentality” between the probation and prison services;
  • the concept in the 2003 Criminal Justice Act of all offenders being released from prison subject to licence regardless of length of sentence. ‘Custody Plus’ was intended to offer provision for those sentenced to less than 12 months,5 but was not subsequently implemented; and
  • the Social Exclusion Unit (2002) report on reducing re-offending by ex-prisoners and the National Reducing Re-offending Action Plan (Home Office, 2004) prompted the development of multi-agency planning and interventions based on seven reducing re-offending pathways.


IOM practice drew on pre-existing programmes and research. A national evaluation of the Prolific and other Priority Offender (PPO) programme (Dawson and Cuppleditch, 2007; Dawson, 2007; Home Office, 2009a) had highlighted benefits of this approach. The Drug Interventions Programme (DIP) provided multi-agency ‘wraparound’ support for drug misusing offenders, early engagement upon arrest and a ‘tough choices approach’ (Skodbo et al, 2007). Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) provided assessment and management of the most serious sexual and violent offenders. One MAPPA element relevant to IOM was the effective use of external controls including licence conditions, restrictions on behaviours and contacts, and police home visits (Wood and Kemshall, 2007; Kemshall et al, 2005). The drivers for change across the sites are summarised in figure 1.1 below. This sets out the elements that already existed before IOM, and those elements that helped to shape its development.


Figure 1.1: Drivers for change


Process Evaluation of Five IOM Pioneer Areas - figure 1.1.jpg


The Government provided IOM guidance, compiling a route map for the pioneer sites in August 2008, followed by the PPO Refresh document (Home Office, 2009a) and the IOM Government Policy Statement (Home Office, 2009b). More recently, guidance for the Vigilance Programme6 has drawn on key elements of IOM development.
The Government Policy Statement (Home Office 2009b) suggested:

  • IOM was to be the strategic umbrella that brought together agencies across government to prioritise intervention with offenders causing crime in their locality;
  • IOM was to build on and expand current offender-focused and public protection approaches, such as PPO, DIP and MAPPA; and
  • IOM should relate to all agencies engaged in Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs) and Local Criminal Justice Boards (LCJBs) with direction and support in bringing together the management of repeat offenders into a more coherent structure.


Sites in Avon and Somerset (based in Bristol), Lancashire, Nottinghamshire, West Midlands and West Yorkshire7 were provided with ‘pioneer’ funding from the Home Office (HO) and Ministry of Justice (MoJ) in 2008/09 and 2009/10, to develop IOM free from central prescription. IOM emerged from a complex policy and practice agenda for jointly managing offenders across criminal justice agencies and wider community and government bodies. It has been characterised by ‘bottom up’ developments in local areas which have achieved a collective description of IOM. While this approach has been supported by central government it has not been directed towards a single model or mode of operation. The key components of IOM in each of the five areas can be found in appendix 2.

This research on IOM was commissioned by the HO and MoJ in July 2009. The aim was to conduct a process evaluation across five pioneer sites to:

  • assess whether implementation of IOM was as intended;
  • identify the approaches to IOM implementation; and,
  • identify the opportunities and barriers to effective implementation of IOM approaches to capture the lessons learnt.



2. Approach

The process evaluation was conducted between August and December 2009. The methodology was primarily qualitative. Documentation from the sites was reviewed, giving the evaluation team an overview of the provision at each site and an initial outline of similarities and differences which were further interrogated as the fieldwork progressed. Purposive samples of the main stakeholder groups were obtained through consultation with the sites.


In summary, the fieldwork included:

  • one workshop with 14 strategic managers from across the 5 sites;
  • interviews with 48 managers drawn from the main agencies at each site;
  • one focus group at each site and one cross-site focus group with lead officers for managing individuals under IOM (32 participants in total in 6 groups);
  • one workshop at each site with officers from across the partner agencies8 (107 participants in total in 5 workshops);
  • interviews with 40 offenders across 5 sites, including a mix of individuals subject to statutory supervision and PPO programmes and those who were not.


Sampling details are provided in appendix 3 and research instruments in appendix 4. The qualitative data were transcribed and then coded and analysed by theme using specialist computer software. The thematic framework developed has been largely followed in the format of the report.

The following impacted on the qualitative research:

  • the risk of bias in the purposive sampling of participants. Even though set criteria were given, negotiating access through the site lead officers may have resulted in participation by more motivated stakeholders and offenders;
  • small samples, in particular offenders, may have captured limited experiences; and
  • the crowded site environment meant there were competing demands for access to the study sites from non-pioneer sites and other researchers, which may have limited stakeholder participation.


The evaluation also analysed available quantitative data. Details of 3,321 individuals targeted under IOM approaches across the 5 sites were identified, of which 3,104 were matched to nationally held records. The data used included Police National Computer (PNC) data on offending histories and some case management information from the sites recording interventions with the individuals.


The following impacted on the analysis of quantitative data:

  • data protection and security requirements limited access to information;

  • inconsistent or incomplete records of the selection and de-selection of individuals for IOM limited analysis of processes, costs and impacts; and

  • the various designations of IOM offenders across agencies and systems limited the accurate cross-identification of individuals between and within sites and thus the capacity for quantifiable outcomes.



3. Findings

This chapter sets out the results of the evaluation. Section 3.1 describes the key issues in defining IOM, including how offenders were targeted and selected. Section 3.2 discusses the characteristics of IOM in the different pilot sites. Governance and joined up working arrangements are drawn out in sections 3.3 and 3.4 respectively. Section 3.5 discusses the key issues surrounding management of offenders, and section 3.6 reports on the perceived impact of IOM by stakeholders and offenders.



3.1 Defining IOM

Many respondents described IOM approaches as evolving towards a clearly articulated concept. Though many of the features identified in the evaluation were common across the sites, no definitive model emerged. It has not been possible to judge any site as representing a model operation. Stakeholders reported key aspects of IOM had been taken, developed and re-fashioned both within pioneer sites and by non-pioneer sites. At the same time the sites themselves evolved as new challenges arose.


Stakeholders were asked to outline their understandings of the definition of IOM. Generally they echoed those in the policy statement (Home Office, 2009b), for example seeing IOM as:

  • a range of initiatives under the ‘umbrella’ concept of IOM seen as a general ‘way of working’, rather than a specific delineated programme;
  • encompassing the related schemes for PPO and DIP;
  • a continuum of services targeted at offenders with particular offence patterns and/or needs;
  • a pooling of knowledge, resources and skills in multi-agency partnerships; and
  • encompassing a focus on the adult offender released from short-term custody without statutory supervision.


Some strategic stakeholders viewed IOM as an opportunity to re-engineer the management of offenders more widely. The greater engagement in offender management processes by the police and Criminal Justice Interventions Team (CJIT)/DIP workers suggested the lead professional in offender management could be undertaken by a widening group of professionals. This had been resource driven initially as police were able to utilise more resources for the offender management of non-statutory offenders (NSOs). The pragmatic circumstances in which this had been achieved may lead to substantial change over time but this was not universally seen as the appropriate way forward.


During the lifetime of the evaluation, IOM evolved into a more integrated operation rather than simply a convenient cluster of individual programmes such as PPO and DIP. For example, Nottinghamshire had described IOM as containing three schemes – PPO, DIP and General Offender Management (GOM). It has now re-launched its IOM scheme under the single branding of Sherwood Plus. Similarly, Bristol (Impact) and Burnley in Lancashire (Revolution) have sought to incorporate a range of programmes in a single overarching brand, thereby signalling a more integrated delivery pattern.



Some frontline staff viewed IOM as just extending offender management to NSOs, and (at one site) offenders (and those at risk of offending) with little or no previous offender management.9 For most stakeholders, IOM was defined in part by the specific types of offenders targeted. Yet this was dynamically assessed through the selection/de-selection process of potential targets within the chosen cohort, and continued participation continuously re-assessed. Offenders could be in the appropriate offending category but be de-prioritized through the application of a series of dynamic mechanisms such as changing police intelligence, RAG10 schema determining day-to-day actions driven by knowledge of intelligence concerns, tasking meetings at daily beat police meetings, and regular review meetings conducted within a multi-agency forum.

They’ve come down from a degrading process from PPO to amber IOM to green, what we do is nobody drops off the IOM offender list but we call them white, they’re upgraded as far as all the partnerships and all the intelligence says they are not active but they sit at the bottom of the list so that the minute we get anything in through the intelligence system or partners we’ll bring the name back to the table. (Police)

Stakeholders reported the starting point for deciding the targeting criteria for IOM was the risk of persistent and serious offending amongst offenders in the community, often (though not exclusively) focused on serious acquisitive crime. However, the targeting of IOM offenders was also driven by local priorities determined by local area agreements (LAAs) and CSP crime assessments, funding to provide services to non-statutory adult offenders, the active engagement of youth offending teams (YOTs) to support young offenders, and police intelligence. Targeting became contested at some sites. CSP interviewees emphasised they were keen to target offender groups of local concern while the police linked their priorities to force priorities for crime reduction.

Our main target really is around burglary and robbery, so that ties in very nicely with what we do but you also get conflicting targets, particularly with CSPs and external agencies… they’d probably say anti-social behaviour and violent crime. (Police)

Stakeholder interviews identified different cultural norms, conflicting performance targets and also definitions of success at a local, regional and national level as factors which influenced target setting. This was often an extension of the debates evident in PPO programmes where targeted offenders varied across and within programmes. Respondents also reported enthusiasm for IOM was leading it to be perceived as a panacea for all offender management processes, often guiding local wishes for expansion and diversification.

Anything is suitable for IOM with the rider that there may be some things that’s better dealt with in a different way like domestic violence, dangerous offenders and anti-social behaviour. (CSP)


Selection/de-selection processes

Whilst selection processes were inevitably influenced by local policing intelligence at any given time, all schemes had agreed selection criteria, some adapted from existing PPO schemes, some refreshed to incorporate the wider targets envisaged by IOM. One characteristic evident from the fieldwork was IOM involved a wide range of agencies as part of that selection process including the voluntary and community sector (VCS) at some sites. The following methods for selection/de-selection were identified as being common, to some degree, to all sites:

  • police intelligence – bringing offenders to the notice of the schemes was central to the decision-making process in all pioneer sites. Using such intelligence on the ground helped start a process of identification and then selection;

  • RAG schema determining day-to-day actions driven by knowledge of intelligence concerns;

  • tasking meetings, usually police-led, on a daily basis to determine priorities for action that day, particularly where disruption activities were being considered and ensuring co-ordination between IOM and beat police officers; and

  • regular review meetings conducted within a multi-agency forum were indicative of the way decisions were made regarding offender positioning on the RAG schema. These were informed by the provision of intelligence from all agencies including in some instances the VCS.


The rigour of the multi-agency meetings was seen as important to counter balance an over reliance on police intelligence, as well as to feedback to the intelligence process itself. The research team noted some very good examples of regular multi-agency case discussions which guided future actions. The One Day One Conversation (ODOC) in the West Midlands and the Multi-Agency PPO Meetings (MAPPOM) in Nottingham were examples of this approach. In addition, during the research the impact of the PPO Refresh (Home Office, 2009a) was evident in a more dynamic selection/de-selection process. This was identified in stakeholder interviews and workshops as key to ensuring the right offenders were targeted. The dynamic nature of selection/de-selection is illustrated in table 3.1 using data from one site. In summary this offers an estimate that 8.3% of all IOM offenders were de-selected over a one month period.11 This dynamic process ensured there was clear evidence either the offender was no longer an immediate risk in the community, they had entered a different scheme, or been recalled to custody. This meant work allocation could be reprioritized and transferred to other offenders at higher immediate risk of re-offending.

It’s as important to de-select as to select and it’s keeping that focus on a cohort of people who are actually active and who we can actually work with. (Police)


Table 3.1: Illustrative example of de-selection



% of offenders de-selected less than 1 month after start on IOM

Non-PPO non-statutory




Non-PPO statutory




PPO non-statutory




PPO statutory










Strategic stakeholders argued targeting and selection was constrained within the parameters of national indicators (NIs) and public service agreements (PSAs) to which their work had to be aligned. This impacted both at a local level with different agencies having targets and priorities at odds with each other and at a national level where there was no consistency of approach.

It’s very difficult because there isn’t one measure for IOM, what you have got is national indicator 3012 that measures a cohort for PPO, there is NI 1813 that measures the statutory offenders on probation books but there is nothing that covers non-statutory IOM offenders… we are ending up with a patchwork of national indicators for this. (CSP)

Areas have attempted to set up performance frameworks encompassing a range of NIs and other indicators, but to date have had problems collecting the data to populate them. The exception is West Yorkshire that has adapted NI 30 as a measure for IOM as well as the PPO cohort and has been able to track the results of the full IOM cohort.


Support for a single, nationally shared and negotiated indicator around ‘reducing re-offending’ was frequently promoted by respondents.

It’s just very difficult being NI 18 is not very mature and it’s very difficult because there isn’t one measure for IOM, what you have got is national indicator for 30 that measures a cohort for PPO, there is NI 18 that measures the statutory offenders on probation books but there is nothing that covers non-statutory GOM14 offenders so there my advice has been that we should be using NI 1615 which is serious acquisitive crime we have also got NI 4016 which is the people in drug treatment and we are ending up with a patchwork of national indicators for this. (CSP)



3.2 Characteristics of IOM in the pioneer sites

The nature and level of resourcing, the local context and the impact of pre-existing schemes and relationships all affected how the pioneer sites developed. These will be dealt with in turn. Information on distribution of offenders by site and offending histories is also discussed.


Nature and level of resourcing

Pioneer funding was directed by local priorities not the construction of a single vision of IOM. West Midlands used their funding (£450k 2008/09 then £250k 2009/10) to develop a data management system. Avon and Somerset (Bristol) and Nottinghamshire with only £50K each in 2009/10 used this for project management. West Yorkshire (£550k 2008/09 then £395k 2009/10) implemented a countywide initiative investing in local hub arrangements in each area. Lancashire (£200k 08/09 then £300k 09/10) invested in seconded staff from a range of organisations including VCS in their IOM hub in Burnley. Nottinghamshire and West Yorkshire secured additional funding through local CSPs and at other sites HO, National Offender Management Service (NOMS), European Social Fund and other funding was accessed.


Many stakeholders recognised termination of pioneer funding would impact (albeit differently) on each site. They recognised the need for projects to work closely with CSPs and other funders to secure longer term development of the programme. Both in preparation for this and as part of the development of IOM, the sites had attempted to re-shape existing resources. Many stakeholders reported the diversion of existing resources through changing priorities and realigning staff was the way to resource IOM. For example, for the police this was a shift from ‘catch and convict’ activities towards investing resources into wider reducing re-offending activities.

[IOM involves] taking resources away from the response side of the business that turns up to deal with the reporting of crime for example or dealing with an incident, and as crime is coming down, trying to scale the resources around from those activities into this preventative and reducing activity and keep it mainstream. (Police)

CSPs likewise sought to use their resources to support agency engagement, such as in Nottinghamshire where substantial funds were made available to fund probation service officers to engage in offender management with non-statutory adult offenders. Many stakeholders reported the key aim was efficiency, using the same resources with better impact and effect.

I don’t think it’s actually about more money, I think it’s actually about using the resources that are out there more effectively… I think there’s an awful lot of wastage in the system at the moment. (Probation)

There was considerable variation in costs between sites, with reported overall set up costs ranging up to £190,000 and annual running costs ranging up to £530,000.


Local context

Apart from West Yorkshire which developed a force-wide approach, the evaluation has focused on sub-county areas in each of the sites. Bristol and Nottingham had a city focus, though the latter began to expand throughout the county during the evaluation. Although Lancashire had recently expanded the development of IOM beyond the Pennine police division, this evaluation focused on Burnley, Rossendale and Pendle local authorities (LAs). West Midlands IOM was the last to develop, located in two LAs, Walsall and Wolverhampton. Across West Yorkshire each of the hubs located in five LAs developed in unique ways. This compendium of different approaches across the sites limited the ability to closely compare each separate initiative.


Impact of pre-existing schemes and relationships

Across the sites stakeholders reported IOM was built on pre-existing schemes and approaches. Nottinghamshire had a strong countywide scheme for PPOs which formed the core of the initial approach though this was adapted later. Lancashire had a history of multi-agency partnerships going back to the Tower Scheme in 2006 and earlier initiatives. Leeds had a strongly developed DIP scheme. The Bristol scheme worked from the outset with an integrated relationship with prisons, a result of close engagement in previous projects.


Distribution of offender categories

Although there were no common performance data systems in use across the areas, NOMS collected aggregated data on IOM caseloads in each of the five sites. This was broken down by whether the offender was under statutory supervision or not, and in a PPO scheme or not.17 Table 3.2 shows the proportion of IOM offenders in each area by supervision arrangement as at the end of December 2009.


Table 3.2: Distribution of supervision categories by Probation Trust Area Total number of offenders




Total number of offenders

Percentage on statutory supervision

Percentage in PPO scheme

Avon & Somerset












West Midlands




West Yorkshire









It is important to note the variation between sites. Lancashire had the lowest proportion (34%) of cases under statutory supervision. West Yorkshire had the highest proportion (74%). In relation to PPOs, Lancashire had the lowest proportion (22%) in the scheme, and Nottinghamshire had the highest proportion (70%). The additional prioritisation of the non-statutory adult offender group was clearly more pronounced as a proportion of the workload in Lancashire. IOM has been identified most closely as targeting non-statutory adult offenders18 released from custody (Home Office, 2009a). However, in practice concentration on this group varied considerably across sites. Nevertheless, all the sites have extended their reach beyond PPO cohorts to work with a larger group of statutory and non-statutory persistent adult offenders. In West Yorkshire and the West Midlands, agencies included young offenders as a prime target. The other three sites developed policies focused on that transitional group of 18 year olds moving out of YOT provision into adult services. Decisions to focus on NSOs took place at different points in the timelines of each pioneer site and this may partly explain variations across the country. Resourcing of NSO management varied too and partly reflected the capacity of probation to draw down resources. This also encouraged innovation in who was to act as the lead professional for NSOs which is discussed later in this report.

Some of the differences reflected different histories in the evolution of the schemes. For instance Nottinghamshire grew directly out of its PPO scheme so tended to show much higher proportions of PPOs in its earlier period. Police-led projects in Lancashire and West Yorkshire used their funding to extend their reach to NSOs where probation was unable to find sufficient resources. Where funding could be garnered from local sources (such as CSP funds) this enabled probation to offer offender management engagement, as happened during the life of the Nottinghamshire project.


Offending histories

Table 3.3 below shows the offending histories of the IOM cohort which demonstrates the targeting of persistent prolific offenders across the sites. This shows both the high re-offending records and number of breaches of individuals, illustrating the chaotic and active natures of their criminal records.


Table 3.3: Average offending histories of IOM cohort




Number of PNC offences / occasions 

Number of previous primary offences

Number of breaches of orders

Age at first conviction

Age January 2010

West Yorkshire (n=1152)






Nottingham (n=349)






Lancashire (n=1072)






Bristol (n=420)






West Midlands (n=205)








3.3 Governance

Layers of interest

The governance of IOM developed within a complex set of layers:

You’ve got things like police, probation, you’ve got the LCJB that operate across the whole criminal justice area, you’ve got CSPs which are local…youth offending services are part of the locality, you’ve got things like the NTA [National Treatment Agency] which are regional. (Probation)

The following four dimensional tracks of governance arrangements illustrate this complexity:

  • national – MoJ/NOMS, HO, Youth Justice Board (YJB), other government departments;

  • regional – Directors of Offender Management (DOMs) including prison estate, Government Offices (GOs)/Home Office Regional Deputy Directors (HORDDs); NTAs, YJB;

  • countywide – LCJBs, probation trusts, police forces; and

  • local – CSPs, local strategic partnerships (LSPs), LAs, basic command units (BCUs), area offices, YOTs, etc.


Stakeholders often had a very distinct view about the relationships both within each level and between them. These were dependent on the particular configurations in each pilot area, on historical arrangements and acceptance or otherwise of each role as relevant to the delivery of IOM. Each IOM site sought to resolve these relationships in different ways. For example Bristol had links between the CSP and the LCJB through strategic personnel sitting on each group and an active IOM Board supporting delivery. However, these stakeholders were aware of the complexities of governance in the roll-out from the city to the rest of Avon and Somerset with multiple CSPs.

At a regional level, there was little evidence that either GOs/HORDDs or DOMs were central to the strategic shaping of the local schemes. Regional figures were seen as supportive of the initiatives but their further engagement was relatively limited. There were secondees in West Yorkshire from the Government Office for Yorkshire and Humber and from the DOM’s office which represented a good example of engagement. In the West Midlands there was a greater level of involvement from the regionalGO, the regional NTA and Office for Criminal Justice Reform. In part this was due to a more directive approach to the initial development of IOM driven by the desire within this site to secure pioneer status and funding, but which had continued through a commitment and interest in the potential for IOM to deliver results on reducing re-offending.19

Some sites moved beyond the pre-existing governance structures to reflect new directions. For example, West Midlands focused on problem families and had representation from a senior manager from Children’s Services at the local delivery board level. Others included prison representatives and, at board level, agencies such as Job Centre Plus and Primary Care Trusts. In Bristol, the private sector was also evident.

Responsibilities between LCJBs and CSPs

Across the five sites CSPs exercised significant influence on the shape of strategic IOM priorities. This was strengthened by the new statutory duty to ‘reduce re-offending’ under the Policing and Crime Act.20 However, stakeholders reported difficulties between CSPs and police and probation areas, and between CSPs and LCJBs.


Two tier non-metropolitan authorities with a mixture of county and district accountabilities demonstrated particular difficulties. Often the differing needs of individual CSPs conflicted with a desire to maintain a single, county approach to IOM.

Seven CSPs in the city want eight different things and that is where it will all fall down if we give control to the CSPs we will have eight separate models. (Police)

Some stakeholders asserted LCJBs had a significant role to play. However, the dual but often parallel responsibilities between LCJBs and CSPs confused the governance arrangements with little agreement or clarity about who held the key site of power. In some sites the police were keen to exercise leadership.

I think there are some problems of leadership which are structural, there’s always been a problem of how the LCJBs can work effectively with CSPs, like there are issues with how the LCJBs work with region, the police are another iteration of that…it is quite tricky. (NTA)

In other sites, there was a more equal and shared leadership involving probation, police and the CSP. The most successfully functioning arrangements incorporated the following features:

  • balanced engagement and clear lines of responsibility between the three key statutory agencies (and where relevant the youth offending services) – police, probation and prison;

  • clear lines of accountability and responsibility between LCJBs and CSPs;

  • a board structure where each key partner – LCJB, CSPs, statutory agencies, VCS – were appropriately represented and strategic direction was owned and shared, and lines of communication understood and observed;

  • active links between strategic and operational delivery; and

  • co-location of the core agencies and open links to all other agency involvement.


Strategic leadership and operational delivery

Working relationships between strategic stakeholders appeared most productive when that strategic leadership was closely aligned to operational delivery. This was evidenced where strategic management were co-located with delivery teams and where delivery teams were able to articulate the strategic policy imperatives. Where there was a gap between these two elements stakeholders reported concerns about appropriateness and clarity of governance.



3.4 Joined up working

The effective delivery of IOM in the pioneer sites relied on multi-agency participation and a willingness to resolve sometimes conflicting inter- and intra-agency agendas. Stakeholders expressed a desire to work beyond silos at all the sites but achieving consistency, clarity of expectations, positive communication and co-ordination on the ground was challenging.


Role of the police

Stakeholders recognised the police force was the largest organisation numerically in the IOM partnership approach and the one with the resources and direction necessary to drive forward the success of IOM. Nonetheless, their predominance created tensions in both strategic and delivery leadership:

It feels like a police project not a board project, we talk about OCUs [Operational Command Units] not divisions or boroughs…if everybody attends we have something like eight police reps including the team, and then the reps from OCU are all police reps, that whittles away at any sense of this being true inter-agency activity and it also over time saps the enthusiasm of other partners. (Regional)

However, the leadership and management of IOM delivery were significantly shaped by the changing role of the police. Across the sites the police extended their roles beyond the traditional ‘catch and convict’ into four role profiles, intelligence gathering, pathways support, enforcement, and disruption/attrition. These were shaped locally by how schemes evolved out of pre-existing schemes and how leadership was originally negotiated.


These roles were combined and delivered by IOM designated police officers or beat and neighbourhood police officers. The latter were often engaged primarily in enforcement and disruption activities. All these roles were central to the effective delivery of IOM and linked the police to other professionals delivering offender management such as probation staff, DIP/CJIT staff, VCS, health, prison officers, YOT workers, and those delivering housing, employment, drugs and alcohol, and family interventions.


Agency engagement

The nature of the organisation of IOM was explored in a series of workshops with each site. These demonstrated the evolving nature of relationships between agencies and perceptions on the distribution of power and authority. Whilst many respondents pointed to the added value of joined up working, the cultural tensions between agencies were also emphasised as a recurring theme impacting on co-operation. Joined up working did not just happen, inter-agency tensions needed to be identified and resolved for effective working to develop. It was reported at some sites successful resolution of such tensions was a healthy sign of effective joint working.

West Midlands and West Yorkshire had integrated YOT provision effectively into their IOM delivery; this remained an unresolved issue for the other sites. This was partly driven by the nature of previous relationships and whether IOM was conceived as a scheme primarily for adult offenders. Some YOTs reflected that their model of integrated practice was already well developed and did not see the need to respond to this agenda.


In relation to the non-statutory adult offender cohort in particular, sites recognized the importance of links with prison but also the difficulties of incorporating an agency which often had wider constituencies of offenders returning to disparate locations. In Bristol, the local prison was closely engaged in IOM at the outset. During the course of the fieldwork other sites began to improve their relationships with prisons. Nottinghamshire had a prison liaison officer located in their Multi-Agency Intelligence Team (MAIT). In West Yorkshire, pathway based assessments for short sentenced prisoners were being undertaken in local prisons. Another frequently missing player in the IOM ‘partnership’ was the court system. It was suggested courts may begin to be more involved if LCJBs exerted an impact upon the strategic development of IOM.

Engaging with the courts and CPS is difficult given the need to recognise, respect and for them to maintain themselves their autonomy and lack of statutory obligation. (Police)

The joining up of the key agencies was an essential feature of all IOM sites. Balanced centres of power between agencies were not always achieved within sites but respondents recognised the key roles played by all agencies and the central task of making this happen. At project level key individuals, experienced and committed to multi-agency working, were often significant drivers of good working practices on the ground. There was evidence too, where strategic individuals did not share a common view, relationships could become tense and counter-productive. At the root getting a good balance demanded core staff were willing to think and work beyond agency boundaries. This became evident in co-location arrangements where agency differences could be addressed and overcome.

In terms of involvement courts, police, prisons, probation have all got different day-to-day core tasks and starting to see how those core tasks can fit together and those prime concerns and constraints around resource allocation and so on can be moulded to get something that is more than the sum of the parts, I think it’s a challenge, whether it’s an obstacle I don’t know. (Probation)



Though each site had different configurations of co-location reflecting local arrangements and the availability of suitable accommodation, most respondents felt it helped to create a joined up service. The Pennine Division in Lancashire featured a large number of staff including VCS agencies co-located in a police station. Bristol co-located its small core central team in a police authority building but offenders were seen in various locations across the city. West Yorkshire had co-located hubs in local authority districts.

There were particular concerns relating to being co-located in a police station highlighted by, mainly, VCS respondents. One issue related to the vetting procedures which could inhibit some agency personnel actually being located in a police building. A second concern was around offenders having to come to the police station to receive support and intervention. Police respondents tended to underplay these concerns though many could also see the benefit of a neutral venue.

Wherever staff were co-located, there was concern about the clarity between the line management relationships of staff located in an IOM unit to their parent organisation. It was emphasised strongly by many stakeholders IOM should not become its own silo as its strength lay in its interactional qualities of bringing different agency perspectives together. Indeed this was contrasted to the experience of some YOTs where agency staff appeared to lose effective links to their parent agency.

There was substantial agreement among stakeholders concerning the core agencies which should be involved in a multi-agency partnership and therefore in a co-located unit. They generally included police, probation, prison representatives, DIP/CJIT and, where they were part of the scheme, YOTs. Other agencies could be co-located for part or all of their time but it was recognised this could create too unwieldy a unit, which could bring its own management problems. Figure 3.1 below highlights key learning which was seen as crucial by respondents in workshops and interviews when discussing co-located teams.


Figure 3.1: Co-location: key messages


Process Evaluation of Five IOM Pioneer Areas - figure 3.1.jpg


Information exchange

Stakeholders reported on the formal mechanisms for data sharing and the human interaction which co-location and joined up working engendered. A single, centrally driven case management system shared by all agencies was strongly supported for easier data sharing and monitoring. Across the sites, case management systems could not be uniformly accessed by all agencies and there was no successful example of integration of data management systems. In West Yorkshire, the CSP funded the development of Mi-Case, a shared case management system to be available to all partners (though this is not yet fully used). The demands of double entry would necessitate additional resources and this could be a practical barrier to integration. The different priorities of NOMS and the police were also highlighted as inhibiting this co-ordination process and this was combined with a proliferation of systems of varying use in practice. In Bristol, the information officer described 17 databases they had to track individuals through the systems. Even in the West Midlands, which had made the greatest investment in an IT system to deliver shared data management, there were concerns as to whether the key features had been adequately addressed before the system was designed.

We decided that the answer was an IT system before understanding what the problem was we were actually trying to fix in terms of this is the business process. (Regional stakeholder)

Cultural differences between the agencies involved in IOM, particularly in their attitudes towards offender management, were also identified as inhibiting data sharing. Breaking down these cultural inhibitors was facilitated by both co-location and joined up working. At a delivery level the information exchange between workers on the ground enabled the multi-agency partnership to grow and prosper.

On a day-to-day relationship works really well… police, probation, the prison service, they’re all in the same building, they all work together as a team so a lot of those barriers have been broken down. (CSP)

The input of police intelligence into managing individual offenders was an aspect of information sharing which was especially highly valued by all stakeholders. Respondents frequently referred to the fact shared working arrangements made this intelligence no longer simply a one-way route from the police to the OM. Feedback loops were created which informed the efficacy of the original intelligence and guided subsequent practice. This, at its most successful, impacted very positively upon day-to-day policing.

We have almost got to check and balance and almost a QA [Quality Assurance] process because we can now QA that police intelligence against whatever probation say about this person you know what the drug treatment service is you know what's Group 421 telling us about their behaviour you know and its just building up that holistic image that maybe we could have. (Police)



3.5 Managing the offender

At the core of IOM was the delivery of a managed set of interventions, sequenced and tailored to respond to the risks and needs of the individual. These interventions had the key aim of disrupting the offender’s criminal activity and thereby reducing their re-offending. PPO schemes had been constructed around a 3-tier model of deter, catch and convict, and resettle and rehabilitate. Whilst those terms were still in use across IOM sites, a more integrated and holistic approach to working with individuals was emerging and was noted by strategic personnel, operational staff and offenders. The IOM model revealed a more co-ordinated approach to service delivery and a more reciprocal approach to decision-making amongst agencies.


A core area of fieldwork addressed the way in which the management of offenders was reflective of current approaches to case management including the ASPIRE22 model from NOMS (Grapes and NOMS, 2006) and the NTA ‘models of care’ (National Treatment Agency, 2006). Figure 3.2 below summarises the best practice principles drawn from across the sites which demarcate IOM as a ‘way of working’.


Figure 3.2: Best practice principles of IOM



Four key issues emerged through the fieldwork as being of particular significance in defining the distinctiveness of the IOM approach. These were:

  • using a ‘lead professional’ (explained below);

  • a continuum of support, intervention and disruption;

  • managing compliance; and,

  • intensity of engagement.


Lead professional

Both PPO and DIP programmes had started the process of widening who could operate as an OM. This was developed across the sites through IOM, with the lead professional role being undertaken by probation, police or drug and other VCS workers. This originated in part through resource constraints within probation particularly in relation to non-statutory adult offenders. Probation trusts were not funded for this group of offenders unless additional resourcing could be introduced such as CSP funding. This limited the capacity for probation to prioritise this group. Ultimately, this will impact on the way in which services to this group of offenders can be delivered. Respondents broadly welcomed this development as a more nuanced offender management model.

If they are non-statutory a beat manager or police officer should try and tie up with a CJIT worker if it’s drugs because they are trained in case management. (CSP)

However, there was still a degree of resistance to this approach expressed by police respondents and occasionally other agencies. One probation stakeholder argued a properly integrated approach to offender management involved the deployment of the ‘right skills at the right time to the right offender’. This meant crossing organisational boundaries and developing enough trust to contribute to the achievement of the targets of partner services. This was particularly sensitive when failure to achieve such targets could lead to financial or reputational costs.


The role of the police in managing offenders was an important part of the conceptualisation and practical delivery of IOM across the sites. It was argued, by some stakeholders, this police role was distinct from the role of offender management practised by probation staff. In some sites where there was a blurring of the police role into offender management this was reported as being problematic for police officers. Offenders themselves had particularly strong views about this. Involvement in IOM resulted in offenders working with police in positive ways which may have been counter-intuitive to their previous experiences.

Instead of having police coming and saying you’re arrested or throwing you in jail and roughing you up, it’s coming and they’re trying to help you and I think that makes a big difference in people’s lives ‘cause they’re actually coming to help you, not coming to stick you back behind the door. (Offender)

Almost all offenders reported their view of police officers had changed as a result of their participation in IOM, the key feature of this new relationship being increased trust.

Because I’ve only ever known police to lock me up and things, I never knew that side to ‘em where they’re there to help you as well, I didn’t give them a chance really. (Offender)

Although a negative view of police adopting a supportive role within IOM was reported by only a very small minority of offenders, the possible barriers to forging a productive relationship requires consideration.

I’ve had bad experiences in the past and I just don’t want them knocking on my door because this is the hard thing, you’ve got a police officer come round your house who’s locked you up in the past, smashed your door down while your kids are in bed, ransacked your house, put you in front of a court…then a couple of years down the line that police officer’s knocking on your door, coming into your house ‘hello how you doing?’ Why would you want that person in your house after they’d done all that to you? (Offender)


Support, intervention and disruption

The typical description of intervention activity emerging from workshops and focus groups showed a sequence of support, intervention and disruption (of potential further offending (see figure 3.3)). The objective of this was to ensure offenders received a high intensity of intervention as agreed through their selection and risk status determined at multi-agency tasking meetings. Integrated into this package was the idea that where offenders were not co-operating, enforcement activity may lead to ‘catch and convict’ strategies. The intention was to investigate the degree to which they could be re-engaged in supportive and pathway interventions. This was particularly relevant in the discussion of non-statutory adult offenders and offered a clear example of the added value of IOM.

The role of the police in the disruption visits, engaging with offenders who are not compliant and tying that in with an offer of a resettlement service in a way whereas traditionally there’s a hard line approach, there wasn’t any alternative to that, so within IOM there’s an alternative offer. (Police)

Recognising the boundaries of work with NSOs without the normative standards of statutory supervision was discussed in detail. A concern about proportionate engagement (recognizing the limits to engagement from a human rights perspective) was identified alongside the fact motivation remained a key signifier of engagement.

You’ve got to balance it against their human rights as well because if we say ‘ok this person is a non statutory prolific offender and we’re going to visit them every day for the next three months’ if there’s absolutely no intelligence or no indication that they’re committing crime you can’t really say that that is proportionate. (Police)


Figure 3.3: Support, intervention and disruption



Offenders themselves recognised the multi-layered approach within IOM and also recognised the differences from previous approaches.

You’re going to get a police officer come round your house and you’re going to go to probation every week and it’s going to be more tougher, it’s like probation but a more tougher probation. (Offender)

The vast majority of offenders interviewed viewed the disruption activity (termed ‘assertive outreach’ by one stakeholder) in a positive light, though the way in which it was regulated and managed was viewed negatively by a minority of offenders.

It was just threatening letters like basically if I didn’t do this then the police would drag me in and question me and stuff like that, get involved either way anyway so basically I got bullied into doing it ‘cause if I didn’t I’d be getting arrested here, there and there. (Offender)


Managing compliance

The disruption component of IOM as outlined above played a key role in achieving offender compliance.

There’s no rules as such but if I don’t turn up or I start ignoring ‘em then they’ll start doing things to punish me like putting stops on me methadone till I make an appointment to see them. Because they’ve got it all sorted out, they’re in charge of it really so I have to tow the line in a way. (Offender)

The voluntary nature of participation in IOM (for NSOs) was also identified by almost all offenders as being an important motivator.

I’m one of these people, I’m a recovering addict and offender and that, I don’t like being told and I would not go, if it was like every week I had to go and see [my key worker], I would never turn up once. Because it’s my choice and I benefit I enjoy it. (Offender)

It was acknowledged by offenders they needed to want to change for these agency activities to have effect.23

They could say I could do this or they could this or that for me but ‘cause I didn’t want to take it up it wasn’t working, if people don’t want to change their self then I don’t think, nothing’ll work for anybody. (Offender)

Some stakeholders reported communication breakdown between different parts of the police estate leading to counter-productive interventions by beat officers. However, lessons were being learnt, and integration of intended actions between IOM and operational police was recognised as desirable.


Intensity of engagement

The intensity of engagement which the IOM model offered was viewed positively by almost all of the offenders interviewed. This intensity of approach was recognised as a welcome contrast to difficulties previously encountered in accessing services.

In previous sentences I’ve come in, when I’ve come into jail I’ve sat down with somebody and they’ve done a sentence plan with me and it’s me telling them what I should do, it’s me asking for things like to work with CARATS24 and people but not much help really. But coming into jail this time it seems like a load of agencies, a load of people, load of help there if you want it. (Offender in custody)

The high level of interaction with the police was recognised as having a strong motivational influence and a positive impact on desistance from crime.

At first when I first come onto it I had officers for the first three weeks, every night I had police officers coming round checking up on me, making sure I was all right, making sure I’m good, but it was good because it wakes you up a little bit. (Offender)

However, it was also acknowledged by a small number of offenders, the level of intensity within IOM needs to be consistent with expectations on statutory orders.



3.6 Perceived impact of IOM

Throughout the fieldwork, the majority of stakeholders from across the partner agencies expressed a strong belief in the potential success and efficacy of IOM on the ground as a ‘way of working’. However, all respondents were conscious of the need (though also the inherent difficulty) of proving success in terms of reducing re-offending. While this remains the key measure for the majority of the stakeholders, ‘softer’ outcomes were also recognized and supported. Many agencies argued incremental success criteria, such as changes in offender's behaviour or reduced chaos in their lifestyle, should be measured. These improvements were ones schemes could promote and could impact on public confidence. Many respondents commented on some of the beneficial by-products springing from IOM including some encouraging case studies of individual offenders and gains in terms of multi-agency partnerships.

The VCS were evident at all sites offering important complementary services which helped sustain offenders in participation. For example, in the West Midlands it was reported the VCS were providing mentoring and assistance with employment, training and education (ETE) opportunities for offenders serving less than 12 month sentences. Agencies were providing culturally competent support and interventions to black and minority ethnic offenders and working with women at risk of offending and those already within the Criminal Justice System (CJS). In the co-located hub in Burnley the VCS were a key set of partners in delivering supportive interventions. Significant resources were secured via Leeds CSP to commission the VCS to case manage 200 offender per annum within IOM.

As detailed above the most significant agency which was involved in IOM arrangements was the police, strategically and at a delivery level. The commitment of their resources and the cultural change (though limited at some sites) both within the police and in their relationships with other agencies was perhaps the most significant organisational outcome identified by stakeholders.

At a more strategic level there were concerns about whether IOM could show reductions in re-offending as this would be necessary to justify resource investment. Indeed some police respondents working outside IOM believed failure to demonstrate reductions in re-offending would raise fundamental questions about continued police engagement. But there was a view that softer outcomes were also markers of effective interventions.

Offenders recognised IOM brought agencies together to offer a constant and co-ordinated level of support and intervention.

But I sort of watches and listens to offender management services and understands it’s all one body, that the prisons work with probation and the police and social services, just everything basically has all become one. (Non-statutory, non-PPO, offender)

The importance of creating a brand to publish and market IOM was discussed by a high number of respondents. Indeed during the course of the fieldwork three areas took on a branding exercise to aid scheme identity. Previous PPO schemes were seen to have benefited from such identities and were an important way to badge success stories, which was seen as crucial for public confidence. Respondents recognised the need for creative thinking around measuring and promoting success. Offenders often did not recognise the IOM brand but understood the scheme they were on either by reference to previous branding or a more colloquial recognition (of their status as ‘prolifics’ for instance). It was observed a number of non-pioneer areas were branding their IOM provision and this may be a key implication for future development and practice. As one respondent notes getting this right is not easy.

If you can give a hook upon which people can identify then that helps but you need to sort out all those issues, if it’s a brand at what level is that brand being pitched and what are you describing within it and for me it has to be that umbrella type approach where everything that fits the broad definition of multi agency offender management falls within it. (Regional)



4. Implications

This process evaluation faced a number of challenges. It was not possible to make whole entity comparisons between sites owing to lack of consistency in what constituted IOM at each site as well as across sites, difficulties in accessing reliable data for quantitative analysis, and developmental changes at the sites during the study. The analyses and recommendations within this report reflect this situation and assume an appetite for central prescription and direction prevalent at the inception of the IOM approach. Since then the political and criminal justice landscape has changed somewhat, and so this may not reflect current policy or practice. The enthusiasm and commitment to IOM from local stakeholders was critical to the development of IOM and encouraged the sites to develop local approaches free from national prescription.



4.1 Elements of good practice and barriers to delivery

This evaluation found the key mechanisms supporting early delivery of IOM were:

  • close links between operational and strategic leadership;
  • robust governance and delivery structures, including clear definitions of the roles and responsibilities of different agencies and agency staff including YOTs and prisons;
  • risk and need driven interventions, particularly for non-statutory adult offenders;
  • a heightened role for police intelligence in supporting offender management;
  • co-location as an effective model of operational delivery modulated by local needs and relationships;
  • effective operational links between prison and community intervention to ensure offenders could be tracked in and through their custodial experience and linked immediately on release to IOM services where warranted;
  • developing local models of offender management consistent with existing national models and where those presenting the highest risks and needs were prioritised through a RAG or similar prioritisation system; and
  • extending the nature and breadth of police engagement in managing offenders.


Conversely, the barriers that inhibited development and delivery were:

  • lack of shared understanding/definition of IOM;
  • confusion in governance arrangements and contested delivery leadership;
  • uncertain relationships with YOTs and prisons;
  • adequacy of resourcing including limited resources for probation to extend management of NSOs;
  • sustainability of IOM structures in mainstream business;
  • co-ordinating data management;
  • lack of capacity to co-locate;
  • competing agency agendas; and
  • mixed messages regarding targets.



4.2 Resolving barriers to delivery

To address barriers to delivery nationally, Government should support an agenda which enables local areas to:

  • define IOM, specifically the targeting of offenders based on high risk and high need irrespective of statutory status and the inclusion or non-inclusion of young offenders;
  • support probation and prisons to realign resources to focus on these offenders;
  • provide guidance on a case management model and data management standards which facilitates multi-agency working; and
  • encourage agencies to develop local strategies in response to local needs, fostering ownership and commitment.


Locally and regionally, agencies should:

  • establish shared leadership and governance with:
    • LCJBs taking a county level responsibility for strategy, consistent practice between CSPs and the resourcing of IOM by countywide agencies with direct assistance from regional agencies, and
    • CSPs taking responsibility for local strategy, operational delivery and local resourcing of IOM delivery, direct links and representation between them;
  • make initial investments to establish IOM to deliver at an optimal level and realign existing resources to sustain delivery;
  • involve prisons, YOTs and VCS agencies as strategic and delivery partners and ensure the goal of reducing re-offending is owned and shared across all agencies;
  • establish joint matrices and processes for dynamic selection and de-selection of offenders;
  • establish dynamic operational practices to enable sequencing of IOM interventions responsive to changing needs and priorities;
  • establish co-location arrangements built on existing arrangements and appropriate to the needs of any particular locality; and
  • deliver inter- and intra-agency training to ensure learning, cultural and operational change engendered by IOM is institutionalised in organisations.



4.3 Management of offenders transformed

The police gained an important foothold in the wider business of offender management. This is partly because the management of NSOs is not within the remit of NOMS, but also because the allocation of resources by police services has encouraged wider ranging police contribution than any previous scheme. Sustaining this investment will depend on the police service more generally regarding this expansion of role as appropriate for its officers, and the extent to which other ways to fund offender management can be successfully procured by probation in a difficult financial climate. The VCS have a developing role to play in supporting offender management work but this remains a distinctive contribution adding value to the core statutory services.


If possible, research providing robust evidence of the impact of IOM on re-offending would be useful. However, local variations in scheme construction and delivery do not make this an easily achievable agenda. Further exploration of the police role in the management of offenders will also be crucial in achieving integration of service delivery arrangements. Nevertheless, IOM goes further than any other scheme to achieve the end to end offender management concept envisaged by Carter (2003).




1. A sixth pioneer site, the London Diamond Initiative was being separately evaluated.
2. Non-statutory refers to those offenders sentenced to less than 12 months in prison, who do not receive probation supervision.
3. This would include those identified through anti-social behaviour interventions and others who had come to the attention of the police but who had not been arrested for specific offences.
4. Assess, Sentence Plan, Implement, Review, Evaluate (ASPIRE) refers to the core features of the offender management model.
5. This was also based on an earlier review of sentencing by Halliday (2001).
6. HO sponsored Vigilance programme was a £4.4m package of support to ensure local areas had the tools, training and plans in place to tackle burglary and robbery before they became entrenched.
7. A sixth pioneer site, the London Diamond Initiative was being separately evaluated.
8. This included statutory partners – police, probation and prison, members of CSPs, a wide range of VCS organisations and other partners from health, employment and the private sector.
9. This would include those identified through anti-social behaviour interventions and others who had come to the attention of the police but who had not been arrested for specific offences.
10. RAG was a system for identifying categories of offenders used in a number of the pilots. Red – high risk and known to be offending; amber – incomplete intelligence picture with need to assess whether should move up or down; green – no offending activity evident over time period. Some areas also have blue for those in custody.
11. The data from one area allowed a detailed analysis of time to de-selection, which in turn allowed an estimate to be made of the number of offenders who were de-selected within one month of being on IOM: this figure was 8.3%.
12. NI 30: a national indicator that measures re-offending rate of prolific and other priority offenders.
13. NI 18: a national indicator that measures adult re-offending rates for those under probation services.
14. GOM: General Offender Management was the term describing IOM offenders in Nottinghamshire who were non-statutory less than 12 month adult offenders, not warranting the high intensity of PPO clients. This designation was only used in this area.
15. NI 16: a national indicator that measures serious acquisitive crime.
16. NI 40: a national indicator that measures the number of drug users recorded as being in effective treatment.
17. This, rather than the data collected, was used as part of the evaluation as the reports submitted to NOMS contain data for all areas whereas the evaluation data for West Midlands were incomplete. As the data are a snapshot of December 2009's data, these were compared to the evaluation data to ensure the same trends were apparent in both data sets.
18. Offenders sentenced to less than 12 months in prison and not subject to probation supervision.
19. The locally driven control of the pioneer site strategic development accords well with removal of the regional tier of government brought in by the in-coming government.
20. The Policing and Crime Act 2010 contained provisions to add probation authorities to the list of “responsible authorities” that comprise CSPs and extended the remit of these partnerships to explicitly include the reduction of re-offending.
21. Group 4 were the deliverer of curfew and electronic surveillance services in this site.
22. Assess, Sentence Plan, Implement, Review, Evaluate (ASPIRE) refers to the core features of the offender management model.
23. This is consistent with desistance research (Weaver and McNeill, 2007).
24. Counselling, Assessment, Referral, Advice, Throughcare.



Carter, P. (2003) Managing Offenders, Reducing Crime: A New Approach. London: Home Office.
Dawson, P. (2007) The National PPO evaluation – research to inform and guide practice Home Office Online Report 09/07. London: Home Office.
Dawson, P. and Cuppleditch, L. (2007) An Impact Assessment of the Prolific and Other Priority Offender Programme. Home Office Online Report 08/07. London: Home Office.
Grapes, T. and NOMS Offender Management Team (2006) The NOMS Offender Management Model. London: National Offender Management Services.
Halliday, J. (2001) Making Punishments Work: Report of a Review of the Sentencing Framework for England and Wales. London: Home Office.
Home Office (2004) Reducing Re-offending National Action Plan. London: HMSO.
Home Office (2009a) Prolific And Other Priority Offender Programme five years on: Maximising the Impact. London: Home Office/Ministry of Justice.
Home Office (2009b) Integrated Offender Management Government Policy Statement. London: Home Office/Ministry of Justice.
Home Office (2010) Prolific and other Priority Offenders: results from the 2008 cohort for England and Wales. London: Home Office.
Kemshall, H., Mackenzie, G., Wood, J., Bailey, R. and Yates, J. (2005) Strengthening Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPAs). Home Office Development and Practice Report 45. London: Home Office.
National Treatment Agency (2006) Models of care for treatment of adult drug misusers: Update 2006. London: Home Office and Department of Health.
Senior, P. (2003) Pathways to Resettlement: Regional Framework for Yorkshire and the Humber Region 2003–2006. Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University Press.
Skodbo S., Brown G., Deacon S., Cooper A., Hall A., Millar T., Smith J. and Whitham K. (2007) The Drug Interventions Programme(DIP):Addressing drug use and offending through ‘tough choices’. Home Office Research Report 2. London: Home Office.
Social Exclusion Unit (2002) Reducing Re-offending by Ex-prisoners. London: Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
Wood, J. and Kemshall, H. (2007) The Operation and Experience of Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA). London: Home Office.



Ministry of Justice Research Series 4/11

Process Evaluation of Five Integrated Offender Management Pioneer Areas

A qualitative process evaluation of five Integrated Offender Management (IOM) pioneer areas was undertaken to assess implementation of IOM, identify approaches to implementation and capture the lessons learnt. The findings indicated that IOM enabled structural changes, transforming the delivery of offender management. There was considerable commitment and enthusiasm for IOM at the sites, whilst acknowledging barriers to development such as definition, resourcing, governance and clarity of agency roles. Since the evaluation took place, the political and criminal justice landscape has changed somewhat, supporting a more locally driven approach which can draw on the learning directly from the pioneers which were shaped and delivered locally.

ISBN 978 1 84099 466 7

© Crown copyright Produced by the Ministry of Justice
Alternative format versions of this report are available on request.

You can download the PDF version of this webpage here