Record number of police forces sign up to CIPFA's finance improvement programme


The new follow-on programme of Achieving Finance Excellence in Policing (AFEP) has launched, with more than 85% of UK police forces participating, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) has announced today. AFEP II has been developed in response to needs within the police sector established during the first phase of the programme.

Its focus will shift to fostering talent in police finance teams and spreading financial awareness across organisations. The core purpose of the programme remains to encourage collaboration and best practice across UK police forces to support the Home Office drive for greater efficiency and more effective processes. Thirty nine of the 45 UK police forces will be participating in AFEP II.

Rob Whiteman, CIPFA CEO, said: "In the current climate, it is more important than ever to ensure that frontline responders and the teams that support them have the tools needed to get the job done efficiently.

"The AFEP programme was created with police, for police. The programme’s flexible approach to training and people development will be crucial in developing the next generation of leaders in police finance. We look forward to continuing to provide valuable tools to help forces manage their resources, which will in turn ensure that local communities are kept safe."

The first iteration of the AFEP programme launched in 2019 with 35 forces participating. It addressed three areas in policing: data, financial management and people. AFEP participants have access to a long-term programme of professional support, including data dashboards, events, training opportunities, publications and content tailored specifically to their needs.

Alison Dewhirst, Police and Fire Network Advisor at CIPFA, said: "We are thrilled that the launch of AFEP II has been such a resounding success. The award-winning AFEP programme was the first of its kind, and we are happy to continue supporting UK police forces toward reform. Financial awareness across organisations is incredibly important, not just within finance teams.

"The focus on people development will be critical in developing modern police forces that make evidence-based decisions and foster collaboration across their organisations. Only by developing the best people can forces meet future challenges, make the most of the opportunities ahead and address the issues facing the police sector."

Notes to editor

  • the AFEP programme was designed by CIPFA in partnership with the Finance and Coordinating Committee of the NPCC and supported by the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) and the Police and Crime Commissioners Treasurers Society (PACCTS)
  • AFEP I received the silver award in the Best Learning and Professional Development category at the Association Excellence Awards 2019
  • there are 45 total police forces in the UK, including the Police Service of Northern Ireland, Police Scotland, Ministry of Defence, Civil Nuclear Constabulary and British Transport Police
  • to learn more about the AFEP II programme, visit the CIPFA website or contact Amie Bridson at


CIPFA, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, is the professional body for people in public finance. CIPFA shows the way in public finance globally, standing up for sound public financial management and good governance around the world as the leading commentator on managing and accounting for public money.

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