Joint inspections

We carry out joint inspections with a number of partners.  These inspections focus on, for example, services for children and young people, criminal justice social work services and health and social care services for adults and older people.  We will inspect delivery across local areas, or we may look at how services are being delivered nationally.  This means a number of scrutiny bodies will have a duty to scrutinise elements of the service.  It makes sense to inspect these services in a joined-up way.

Associate assessors for strategic inspections

We deploy Associate Assessors to our Strategic inspection teams. This includes:

  • joint inspections of services for children and young people in need of care and protection
  • joint inspections of adult services
  • inspections of justice social work services.

Associate assessors are professionals from across statutory and third sector services with significant practice or management experience in services for children, adults or justice. They work as part of the inspection team for the duration of the one inspection. The benefits of this approach are two-fold: associate assessors bring specialist skills, knowledge and recent strategic and operational experience into the inspection and in return, are encouraged to share their learning and to build capacity for self- evaluation and improvement within their own local partnership or service area.

We believe that the inclusion of associate assessors brings current practice perspectives to our strategic inspections. They can help ensure we are partnership-orientated and contribute to our understanding of the contemporary picture of service planning and delivery. At the same time, this involvement provides an ideal opportunity to help build capacity for joint self-evaluation and improvement in local partnerships.

Associate assessors are deployed, by agreement with their employer, for a period of between 4 and 12 days during a strategic inspection. See “frequently asked questions” for more information.

If you are interested in finding out more about becoming an associate assessor, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to arrange an informal discussion with a member of the relevant strategic inspection team.  

We are not currently seeking nominations.

Find out more about our joint inspections below.