Technical Surveillance Unit Head of Unit

Job Family Intelligence
Job Sub Family Surveillance
Code INT-SUR-ME-Technical Surveillance Unit Head of Unit v1.0

Role Purpose

The TSU Head of Unit strategically manages the provision of covert technical surveillance capabilities for serious and organised crime operations.

Key Accountabilities

  • Manage the covert technical surveillance and specialist capability provision at a strategic level in force or across a region in support of tasking and coordination processes.
  • Manage an operational response at force or regional level for the technical surveillance collection of evidence and intelligence.
  • Authorise and approve operational plans, where appropriate, for the deployment of technical surveillance equipment.
  • Prepare, agree and manage technical surveillance budgets and specialist capability provision expenditure to ensure the best use of available resources.
  • Identify, develop and manage strategic partnerships with internal and external stakeholders and provide effective solutions to operational requirements.
  • Approve and manage policies for the purchase, retention and disposal of all technical surveillance assets.
  • Manage operational and capability gap analysis to develop partnership working and collaborative arrangements to enhance capability and capacity.
  • Lead, motivate and engage TSU staff, taking strategic and individual responsibility for professional development.
  • Manage quality assurance systems to force or regional standards for technical surveillance operations to ensure the reduction of risk.
  • Present strategic reports, position papers and policy documents on operational and strategic issues to Executive and Chief Officers in support of the business area.


All roles are expected to know, understand and act within the ethics and values of the Police Service.

The Competency and Values Framework (CVF) has six competencies that are clustered into three groups. Under each competency are three levels that show what behaviours will look like in practice.

It is suggested that this role should be operating or working towards the following levels of the CVF:

Resolute, compassionate and committed

Inclusive, enabling and visionary leadership

Intelligent, creative and informed policing

Education, Qualifications, Skills and Experience

Prior Education and Experience:

  • Must be professionally qualified in at least one technical discipline relevant to technical surveillance activity.
  • Must have a project management qualification or proven ability and experience of managing large projects.
  • Please refer to the College of Policing Surveillance Authorised Professional Practice Manual (Restricted) for more information.


  • Able to plan to short and medium-term cycles, to coordinate a range of activities appropriately within the function, to match these to available resources, and to identify and mitigate known risks to delivery.
  • Able to develop and motivate a team and create strong engagement of individuals with their personal and team objectives and with Force values, behaviours and strategic priorities.
  • Able to develop and implement an effective stakeholder relationship plan which develops trusts and enables contributions.
  • Able to engage a variety of audiences through a range of media to inform and/or persuade.
  • Skilled in setting, monitoring and enabling high performance against team and individual performance objectives.
  • Able to identify potential applications of new or improved practices related to own area of work to improve ways of working.
  • Able to contribute to resource planning, to manage financial budgets and utilise commercial acumen to make risk-based decisions that deliver effective outcomes within the resources allocated.
  • Able to seek out and identify a range of information to identify patterns, trends and options, to solve multifaceted and complex problems.
  • Skilled in coaching and mentoring to enable appropriate career and professional development.
  • Able to manage the delivery of change initiatives within own team.
  • Able to maintain personal resilience and wellbeing in complex and challenging situations and enable others to develop their own personal resilience and wellbeing.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

  • Maintain currency of College of Policing Guidance, best practice and any local policy applicable to the operational police context and leading and managing teams.
  • Maintain and update key knowledge, understanding and skills relating to legislation policy and practice across all functional policing areas of operational responsibility.
  • Maintain knowledge and understanding of new approaches identified by evidence based policing research, problem solving and team working and synthesise these into working practice.
  • Maintain a working knowledge and understanding of new and evolving crime threats and priorities; and current best practice to tackle these in order to enable a pro-active and preventative approach.
  • Complete all annual and mandatory training including for example, fitness tests, personal safety training, first aid, and protecting information.
  • Maintain knowledge and understanding of performance management and assessment process and ensure they are implemented effectively when leading and managing teams.
  • Keep up to date with guidance and best practice on health, safety and welfare.

Professional Registration/Licenses

Not applicable.

Links to other Profiles

Technical Surveillance Unit – Operative

Technical Surveillance Unit – Team Leader

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