The College of Policing has been forced to apologise to hundreds of police officers who were due to take their inspectors exam today.
After months of preparing and studying, thousands of police-sergeant-to-police-inspector hopefuls logged onto the relevant website to take their exam.
However, a ‘computer glitch’ – believed to be related to the server capacity of the third-party supplier – meant that students had to shut down their sessions with the prospect of sitting the exam at a later date.
Deputy Chief Constable Bernie O’Reilly, from the College of Policing, tweeted to say:
“We sincerely apologise to all candidates affected by the issues with today’s Inspectors’ exam.
“We have been working with our supplier to understand and address connectivity issues experienced by a large number of the candidates. We initially thought this issue could be overcome by extending server capacity.
“However, we have subsequently been informed that the issue is broader than the College exam and is affecting delivery across a number of organisations.
“As we are unable to provide candidates with assurance around the functionality of the system, we have decided to suspend the exam sitting. If you have experienced issues or are currently experiencing disruption, please log off and do not try to complete the exam.
“If you have not yet started the exam please do not attempt to access the system today. If you are currently sitting the exam, without any issues, the system should allow you to complete it.
“We understand that candidates have put in an extraordinary amount of work in preparation for today’s exam, sacrificing their time during what is an already challenging and demanding time for policing.
“We apologise for the stress and anxiety caused by this delay, and we will work hard to make sure that those who have been unable to sit the exam without disruption are able to do so fairly as soon as possible.
“We will ensure all candidates are provided with further information specific to their experience today, and we will be exploring other support in respect of the wider impact on candidates’ personal circumstances.
“Further updates will be made available on our social media and on our website as they become available.”
John Apter, Chairman of the Police Federation of England & Wales, tweeted to say:
“Been made aware of this issue, already a stressful time for colleagues and this technical problem is deeply unhelpful.
“We are talking with the @CollegeofPolice to understand what’s happened, why it’s happened and what’s the fix. We are all over it. This should not have happened”.
A former police officer and policing analyst Graham Wettone tweeted:
“This isn’t good & having taken this exam more than once….its a very stressful day….theory based exam for an operational role?
“Time to rethink the process?
“Too many questions & not relevant to the job?”