Scottish Police: Securing the Future of Policing with Talent Assessment

Talent Assessment

Scottish Police: Securing the Future of Policing with Talent Assessment

PeopleScout developed a bespoke assessment process for the Scottish Police Authority to identify top leadership talent.


The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) was faced with the challenge of hiring an elite group of leaders into the roles of Assistant Chief Constable (ACC) and Deputy Chief Constable (DCC) for Police Scotland. Police Scotland had undergone a wave of change, instability and uncertainty, and they needed a strong leadership team to work collectively and deliver a significant transformational agenda.

They wanted candidates who not only had the operational policing experience, but also the leadership capability to drive a challenging journey of accelerated growth, intense scrutiny and accountability.

The SPA engaged PeopleScout as a strategic talent assessment partner to help them do it.


A Robust Process

The SPA wanted our Assessment Team to design and deliver a robust process to recruit a number of ACCs and DCCs into Police Scotland. We measured each candidate’s strengths and potential areas of development against indicators from the College of Policing Competency and Values Framework.

A Two-Staged Approach

In stage one, candidates completed an online critical reasoning test and a series of personality assessments. This was followed by an in-depth validation interview with a highly experienced organizational psychologist.

For the second stage, all candidates were invited to attend an assessment center. They were tested by a team of independent, highly experienced assessors across four exercises.

Bespoke Reports

Our assessors collated all the candidate performance information and developed detailed reports on each individual. These also included a set of unique questions that the interview panel could use in the final stage interview to dig deeper and give candidates a final opportunity to demonstrate their capability in a specific competency.


Successfully Appointed Leaders

This robust approach enabled the SPA to successfully appoint three individuals into ACC roles and two individuals into DCC roles as key players in the Police Scotland leadership team.

Confidence in the Future

Our tailored, best practice-based assessment process gave the SPA confidence that the selected individuals would make a significant contribution to the development of policing in Scotland in the years ahead.

At a Glance

  • COMPANY: Scottish Police Authority (SPA)
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing
  • ABOUT SPA: Scottish Police Authority (SPA) is the independent governing body for policing in Scotland, created to promote, support and oversee improvement in policing.