Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services


Huddle is helping to ensure secure and efficient collaboration between police, fire and rescue services, and the organisation that inspects them.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) independently assesses the effectiveness and efficiency of police forces and fire & rescue services. Covering 43 police forces in England and Wales, and 45 fire and rescue services in England, HMICFRS conducts hundreds of inspections each year. Every inspection involves the collection and detailed review of hundreds of documents. With a focus on making sure all parts of an inspection are as efficient as possible, HMICFRS turned to Huddle to solve their document collaboration needs.

"Tasks that would have taken several hours can now be completed in under a minute."

Rebecca Sims, Digital Manager, HMICFRS

The challenge

Recognising the importance of providing a simple, secure solution for gathering inspection documentation from regional police forces, HMICFRS concluded that the process of sending and receiving documents from forces (and later from fire and rescue services) could be made more efficient.

Another focus area for HMICFRS is collaboration on multi-agency inspections, such as the protection of vulnerable people. It was on one such an initiative that Rebecca Sims, Digital Manager at HMICFRS, and her team identified a potential solution to their inspection collaboration needs.

The Solution

"Another inspectorate we were working with on a joint inspection used Huddle," explained Rebecca, who at the time, had already identified the need for a common document management platform that could be used across inspections.

"It ended up being a great opportunity to trial a potential solution. Because Huddle is in the cloud, it is easily accessible and doesn’t come with the challenges of trying to provide access to each organisation’s locked down internal systems. We saw Huddle would be really useful for us."

A critical requirement for HMICFRS was to make the transfer of inspection documents easier. Security was also a huge consideration, not only for HMICFRS, but also for the police forces who would be using it.

"We recognised immediately that Huddle would help to address the challenges we faced in delivering files, and we worked very closely with the police forces to address any concerns they might have had about security," added Rebecca. "In fact, Huddle were very supportive in providing all the security information needed."

The Outcome

Huddle has been in use for inspections across police forces for several years, and with Fire and Rescue services more recently.

"Huddle is simple to learn and easy to use."

Since rolling out Huddle for police force inspections, HMICFRS has taken on responsibility for inspections across fire and rescue services, and Huddle continues to play an important role.

"Users were quick to adopt Huddle and needed very little help to get up and running. It is simple to learn and easy to use. Feedback has been very positive. Tasks that would have taken several hours can now be completed in under a minute. Huddle has made a real difference to the efficiency of our inspections and the time spent on the transfer of documents," finished Rebecca.