We are of the opinion that overall, the Police Assistance Line (PAL) has contributed to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of NSW Police. Through civilianisation of call taking, NSW Police reports that the cost of handling a minor crime report has been reduced by 65 per cent, to around $21 per call. It is also estimated that PAL has contributed to the release of over 200 police to operational duties. There has also been an improvement in customer service since PAL commenced, with the average time taken to answer a call reduced from over two minutes to 42 seconds. However, performance is still outside NSW Police’s goal of answering 80 per cent of calls within 27 seconds. In addition, waiting time increased over the last six months of 2002.
Parliamentary reference - Report number #110 - released 5 June 2003