"How Have Different Public Sector Organisations Developed Their Strategic Approaches To Countering Fraud"?

2306 words - 9 pages

What is a strategy? What is meant by strategy and do all parties have the same concept of what is meant"Strategy is a process, a constant adaptation to shifting conditions and circumstances in a world where chance, uncertainty and ambiguity dominate..." (Murray, Grimsley 1994 Pg1))Criminal Justice (ICJS 2002 Pg81)) states that strategy is about vision and the process of strategy planning and management is how that vision is realised.There are three components to the strategic planning process, namely:Strategic analysis:Strategic choice: andStrategic implementation. (ICJS 2002 Pg82)It is not, arguably, until this process has been undertaken that it can be said an organisation has developed a strategic approach to dealing with their problems. We will now go on to attempt to show how this process has, or has not, been done within the context of anti-fraud activity within the Public Sector.To finally arrive at a stage where an organisation can say, "This is our strategy" takes a lot of hard work, soul searching and not to mention analysis. On top of this is the willingness of an organisation to accept the results of this process and have the fortitude to apply this magic strategy. As mentioned above there is a great deal of misunderstanding over the concept of a strategy and once it has been formed it then becomes a holy grail, a panacea for all ills. This is not the case. This magic strategy is ethereal in nature, ever changing in line with developing trends and if it is not treated so it can be counter productive. It is in this light that we will look at first the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and it's strategy for countering fraud.There have been two major reports/studies in recent years, which have shaped the D.W.P.'s anti fraud strategy. These are the Scampion Report, compiled by John Scampion working in conjunction with Professor Michael Levi, Professor of Criminology at Cardiff University. (Scampion 2000) This report mainly deals with organised fraud and how it is tackled, but he also looks at the relationship between the two arms of the investigative process within DWP, these being Counter-Fraud Investigation Division, now known as Programme Protection Division and Counter-Fraud Investigation Service and where they sit in relation to one another and counter- fraud activities. The other report was that produced by Lord Grabiner Q.C. that dealt in the main with the informal economy (Grabiner 2000). Initially both these documents had a profound effect on the attitudes and practices of both the fraud practioners on the ground and those tasked with producing a fraud strategy within DWP. Here was an opportunity to build on the work being done to improve the professionalism of the investigators through the P.I.N.S. programme. Grabiner's report extolled the virtues of "joined up Government", no longer would government agencies work in isolation of each other. He recognised that although it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to truly...

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