Special report: Diamond team bids to change South Yorkshire Police working ways

Deputy chief constable Andy Holt.
Deputy chief constable Andy Holt.
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The South Yorkshire Police team set up to save £49 million following Government funding cuts has so far saved £32 million.

Known as Operation Diamond, the team was established in 2009 to transform the way the force operates.

It has meant every single department has been reviewed and jobs cut.

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Departmental mergers with other forces have also resulted, including human resources and IT.

A number of ‘regional services’ have also been set up, including scientific support, procurement, imaging and forensics and underwater search.

A regional working group has been set up to review the possibility of merging other departments including armed response, roads policing and dog support.

Deputy Chief Constable Andy Holt said: “South Yorkshire Police, along with every other force across the country, is having to make tough decisions every day about the services we offer. This is set to continue in the coming years.

“The Diamond programme has yielded significant savings so far, but opportunities within our current structures are diminishing. The reality is our future savings will only be achieved by having fewer staff and changing how we operate.

“We are committed to maintaining a quality frontline service, and will continue to explore new ways of working to achieve this.

“Examples include mobile working with new IT, agile working with staff based away from police stations, and collaborating with other forces where we can.

“Senior managers across the force have more difficult decisions ahead, but people should be reassured we have a dedicated workforce, committed to serving communities and protecting vulnerable people, who continue to work tirelessly on a daily basis.”