Met Police hires internal comms expert from Rolls-Royce

Katie Deeble is taking on the challenge of communicating the reshaping of the Metropolitan Police to its near-50,000 staff.

Met Police: Deeble to communicate changes (credit: Met Police)
Met Police: Deeble to communicate changes (credit: Met Police)

Deeble is currently head of internal comms for the Rolls-Royce's engineering division. She will join the Met as head of internal comms in August, replacing Ruth Shulver, who left in April to take the head of comms role at Surrey Police.

The Met’s leadership is pursuing two major initiatives Deeble’s 20-strong team is tasked with explaining internally.

It is in the first year of a three-year reorganisation called Met Change, which coincides with a budget reduction of £500m from £3.6bn and an ongoing reduction in headcount for support staff that will see nearly 500 roles disappear by April 2014.

A separate cultural change programme called Total Professionalism is focused on improving the conduct of individuals and delivering a better service to the people of London. 

Deeble’s experience of change comms, gathered from internal comms roles at Shell and Tesco, appealed to director of media and comms Martin Fewell. 

‘We need to engage our staff so they can understand what it is we’re trying to achieve,’ he said. ‘That’s why it’s so valuable for us to be able to bring someone into the organisation who has experienced change across some really interesting private sector organisations.’ 

Met Change includes a shake-up that aims to redeploy officers from back offices into neighbourhoods, with the closure of 63 of 136 police station front counters, the creation of new contact points and a different approach to using technology. 

Total Professionalism is an initiative championed by commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe partly as a reaction to the force being caught up in the phone hacking scandal and a number of allegations of racism against individuals. 

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