DBS News Dec 2014 / Jan 2015

January 16th, 2015 by Jonathan Bazely

A Year in Review for the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

In the first DBS News of 2015 they have looked back at 2014 and celebrated 2 years since the DBS was formed, producing some interesting statistics:

  • 8 million Disclosure Certificates were issued
  • 735,000 barring referrals were processed
  • 300,000 applicants signed up to the DBS Update Service
  • 500,000 status checks were carried out
  • 45,000 people made use of the DBS e-guide tool

The DBS also report that they have been involved in some important events over the last 12 months, including:

  • Investigating and subsequently de-registering a company that was found to be fraudulently submitting volunteer applications to the value of £60k. For more information read the DBS News Mar / Apr 2014.
  • Providing evidence to support the conviction of a former school teacher who was found to have committed 97 historic child abuse offences, 40 years ago.
  • Fast tracking applications for volunteers and medical staff working on behalf of the charity ‘Save the Children’, to support work in West Africa with sufferers of Ebola.
  • Assisted with the first prosecution for Operation FALCON as mentioned in the DBS News Oct / Nov 2014.

Working to improve the service through communication with partners

The DBS report that they have worked hard to improve turnaround times for applications by working with the Local Police Forces. For example the DBS reviewed the North Yorkshire Police Force’s processes and provided recommendations which led to a 90% improvement in turnaround times, and a reduction in their backlog of applications by 88% over 12 months. This approach is currently being rolled out to the 53 networks that the DBS work with.

Whilst the number of complaints made to the DBS has risen, they are now resolving 99% of these at the first point of contact which is a positive statistic.

The Future for the Disclosure and Barring Service

The Disclosure and Barring Service had planned to introduce a digital modernisation project (termed ‘R1’) in early 2015 however this has now been postponed until 2016. This decision has been made after an in-depth assurance and risk analysis process concluded that more time was required to give greater confidence in the new system. In conjunction with Home Office Technology and Tata Consultancy Services,  this development has progressed. When launched, the system will look to improve certain aspects of the DBS services including:

  • Improvements to the Update Service.
  • Addressing some of the current process-based inefficiencies to reduce turnaround times.
  • Application progress notifications.
  • Online barring referrals with case progress information, together with the ability to make representations through the web.
  • Individuals able to apply online through Registered Bodies, via a new website with options for web chat or text message notifications.

This delay does not affect the DBS Strategic Plan as they look to continue to develop new products and work with partners at every level.

To view the full DBS News please go to the .gov website