Find out what each of the roles at NABIS do.

The Head of NABIS provides professional leadership and direction covering all aspects of NABIS service delivery. They build strong working relationships across Law Enforcement and NABIS Stakeholders to enable firearms criminality to be tackled across the UK, working with forces for the submission of firearms and ballistic material in line with the NABIS MOU. They also provide strategic support and guidance to the NPCC Criminal Use of Firearms portfolio holder and are responsible for delivering operational decision making and leadership in relation to tactical and strategic operational activity carried out in partnership with police forces and other agencies to tackle gun crime at all levels. They personally lead in the development of partnership working with key stakeholders including the Military, Security Services and HM Government, and influence legislative change where necessary. They fully contribute to the development of risk assessments focusing on the threat posed by illegal firearms to the security of the UK and the safety of its citizens.


The Head of NABIS oversees and prioritises the preparation of intelligence products at both a tactical and strategic level and ensures that NABIS products are given appropriate priority within national tasking and coordination processes. They formulate and maintain a forward work plan to ensure that NABIS has clear objectives in line with the needs of its stakeholders, and that these needs are met. They have oversight and accountability for the forensic capabilities delivered across the NABIS Forensic Hubs and for compliance to UKAS accreditation ISO 17025.

They operate with credibility and practical experience at a senior level with Detectives tasked with overseeing the investigation of the most serious of crimes involving the criminal use of firearms nationally and internationally, providing leadership where necessary.


The NABIS Chief Scientist strategically leads and develops the delivery of the ballistic forensic services element of the National Ballistics Intelligence Service in the UK.

They represent NABIS at International and UK forums, where specialist scientific input is required, whilst also promoting NABIS nationally by providing operational advice, where necessary, to a broad range of law enforcement agencies.

They provide strategic advice to UK Law enforcement, Home Office, CPS etc. on all aspects of forensic firearms examination.

They oversee and provide advice on all technical aspects of NABIS in respect to forensic examination of ballistic materials at the NABIS hubs.

They need to ensure that the equipment utilized within the hubs is fit for purpose and will advise on improvements necessary.

They are responsible for developing and implementing common operating procedures and service delivery at the NABIS Forensic Hubs and for delivering the NABIS performance framework with regard to the forensic science aspects.

The position involves overseeing the delivery of training programmes for all staff working in NABIS hubs to facilitate career development needs and ensure staff are appropriately trained to fulfil their role.

Another responsibility is developing and overseeing a Business Continuity Management process that ensures contingencies are in place to cover threats to the NABIS hubs’ operational ability.

The NABIS Chief Scientist advises and develops policy on scientific standards, data integrity and security, and promotes continuous quality improvement across NABIS forensic services.

They work with the Forensic Science Regulator to ensure the quality of work conducted within the NABIS hubs reaches approved industry standards and meets the Forensic Science Regulator’s Codes of Practice (FSRCoP).

Furthermore, they ensure that Quality Management Systems are set up in order that accreditation by UKAS to ISO 17025-2005, and ultimately ISO 17025-2017, can be achieved across all NABIS Hubs.

Keeping up to date with changes in legislation and advances in technology that affect NABIS is a key part of their role and they will advise the service of any relevant changes, nationally.

The NABIS Quality Manager is responsible for maintaining ISO 17025 accreditation at the hubs. They also help to develop the ISO 9001 quality management system within the NABIS Central Team, and ISO 17025 & 17020 accreditation for partner forces.

They liaise with UKAS in arranging surveillance visits, processing all improvement actions arising for the NABIS Hubs after such visits.

The role involves supporting the NABIS Senior Leadership Team by developing and maintaining a quality management system in accordance with recommendations from the Forensic Regulator and alongside host forces’ Quality Managers.

They regularly update and maintain the NABIS Quality Management Manual and the Standard Operating Procedures for the Hubs in Birmingham and Manchester whilst developing appropriate procedures and policies to ensure compliance with the Forensic Regulators Codes of Practice, feeding these into the NABIS Quality Manual and systems.

In order to ensure that the NABIS Quality Systems are compliant they liaise and negotiate with the quality departments in the five Police Forces where the Hubs are situated.

They maintain all IT systems relating to Quality Management within NABIS, including spreadsheets detailing competency and proficiency tests. They supervise NABIS internal auditors during the auditing process and conduct training and development of auditing staff in quality management.

In addition, they will identify all non-conformances and implement a corrective action system that will improve NABIS’s operational effectiveness and performance.

It is the duty of the NABIS Lab Manager to oversee the daily functioning of the lab, ensuring the delivery of NABIS services in line with customer Service Level Agreements and national performance criteria.

They require technical skills in order to provide expert ballistics knowledge in the delivery of products and services by using tool mark comparison systems, Microscopy and IBIS technologies, and must keep up to date with current firearms legislation and ensure staff working in the hub are aware of legislative changes and are adhering to and applying the changes when necessary.

It is their responsibility to ensure safe working practices within the hub, which includes making sure submitted firearms are made safe, and monitoring the storage, movement and destruction of firearms at the hub.

They are expected to continually develop forensic best practice in the NABIS services and liaise with firearm experts from forces, other agencies, and defence experts as required, and to keep up to date and monitor the firearms industry to anticipate crime trends, and to monitor criminal firearms use for national policy recommendations.

In regards to quality, they ensure that ISO accreditation standards and the Forensic Services Quality Management Systems are adequately maintained and continuous improvements are implemented.

This involves participating in annual quality reviews, ensuring that dip sample audits, technical audits and quality management audits are facilitated, and the findings of these are dealt with appropriately and to the specified timescales, investigating non-conforming work, determining root cause analyses, implementing corrective actions, and ensuring that all the required quality documentation is completed.

The Ballistics Expert identifies investigative opportunities and produces high quality intelligence reports, including the examination and photography of firearms and ammunition for identifying marks and modifications.

They are highly skilled, using tool mark comparison systems, microscopy and IBIS Technologies in line with defined independent standards, to ensure scientific integrity.

They undertake evidential test-firing of firearms for classification and ballistic comparison. They also undertake the classification of all types of firearms and ammunition whilst preserving forensic evidence including DNA, fingerprints, and fibres.

They are responsible for safety, certification and storage of all firearms and associated exhibits / documentation submitted to NABIS, and for the production of expert witness statements for the Certification of firearms and ammunition, in line with current legislation.

They also attend court in the capacity of a Ballistics Expert and present evidence as required.

The NABIS Ballistics Technician has the responsibility for safety, certification and storage of all firearms and evidence submitted to NABIS, including making safe firearms to prevent unintentional discharges, ensuring compliance with national protocols and ensuring safe working practices.

They are responsible for meeting demanding deadlines and performance targets whilst remaining flexible and responsive to changing operational circumstances.

Working with the NABIS Ballistics Experts they ensure that the delivery of NABIS services is in line with customer Service Level Agreements and national performance criteria.

They are also responsible for liaising with firearms experts from outside agencies, other police services, and defence experts, as required, to discuss casework.

The NABIS Ballistics Technician carries out other duties which are consistent with the nature, responsibilities and grading of the post.

Duties after Completion of Level 1 Training

  • Required to provide knowledge and services for firearms and IBIS technologies and maintain quality technical processes in line with independently verified standards.
  • Undertake the classification of all types of ammunition whilst preserving forensic evidence including DNA, fingerprints, and fibres.
  • Undertake the examination and photography of ammunition for identifying marks and modifications, and ensure the efficient and effective use of IBIS technologies, realising early investigative opportunities and maintaining a high quality database.
  • Using and updating the NABIS database.

Duties after Completion of Level 2 Training

  • Undertake the classification of all types of firearms whilst preserving forensic evidence including DNA, fingerprints, and fibres.
  • Undertake the examination and photography of firearms for identifying marks and modifications, and ensure the efficient and effective use of IBIS technologies, realising early investigative opportunities and maintaining a high quality database.
  • Undertake the evidential test firing of firearms for classification and ballistic comparison to national standards, as required.
  • Required to manage and assist in the development of data standards and of intelligence reports.
  • Completion of report writing.

Duties after Completion of Level 3 Training

  • Carrying out manual microscopy comparisons of ballistics items against the open case file system.

The Service Delivery Co-ordinator acts as a customer service contact for forces serviced NABIS Hubs, ensuring safe receipt and continuity of exhibits, and the safe handling and storage of submitted items. This involves maintaining accurate records and updating computer systems as required.

They receive, record, and ensure continuity is maintained for, ballistics exhibits submitted to the NABIS Hub liaising with external forces to ensure that all firearms and ballistics material are transferred to the NABIS Hub as required by the Association of Chief Police Officers Guidelines.

They must check that all weapons submitted to the Hub have been ‘made safe’ and that they have the necessary documentation attached.

They will then securely store, within a controlled system, all firearms, ammunition, and ballistic material received into Police hands by court action, voluntary surrender, found property, or seized as forensic evidence that is submitted by forces.

It is their responsibility to ensure the continued safe storage and control of all firearms, ammunition, and firearms related material submitted to the NABIS Hub by making sure that the Firearms Store is kept in an orderly manner and in compliance with published procedures and work instructions.

They are also responsible for assisting in the implementation of, and ensuring user compliance with, a fully traceable exhibit movement system in order to safeguard all firearms exhibits submitted by forces.

The Service Delivery Co-ordinator deals with ballistics related enquiries from various sources including Senior Investigating Officers from forces serviced by the NABIS Hub and staff from external and internal forensic providers, and are also responsible for managing the flow of exhibits back to external police forces once the required ballistics and forensic processes have taken place.

They are responsible for maintaining computerised records of exhibits and, where required, updating the National Ballistics Intelligence Database (NABID) and other local work management system databases whilst ensuring an efficient and effective filing system is in place to enable documented records to be located in respect of all work undertaken with the NABIS Hub.

The Head of International Development provides professional regional capacity, building capability, advice, mentorship, leadership and direction in support of the UK Regional Advisor to the Western Balkans on all aspects of law enforcement firearms intelligence and ballistics coordination in the Western Balkans region, to enable firearms criminality to be tackled in the region to seek to reduce the flow of illegal firearms to the UK and wider EU.

They are the Project Coordinator for the NABIS Western Balkans Project. Acting as Mentor and advisor to the HO Western Balkans Regional Coordinator.

Carrying out Firearms scoping assessments across six Western Balkan countries, presenting to international audiences on Western Balkans Firearms Issues.

They liaise at strategic level with law Enforcement Partners and Government Partners in the region, along with Europol and the European Commission

The Head of Intelligence for NABIS provides professional leadership and direction covering all aspects of NABIS intelligence unit delivery, and builds strong national and international working relationships with Law Enforcement partners in the UK and abroad, to enable firearms criminality to be tackled across the UK.

The NABIS Intelligence Cell Deputy role requires effective management of a team of staff consisting of Analysts, Intelligence Officers and Researchers working within the NABIS Intelligence department.

The Deputy Head of Intelligence will be required to perform elements of the Head of Intelligence role to cover for periods of abstraction whilst they are away on international duties.

This is predominantly a strategic role requiring an extensive intelligence and technical knowledge concerning the criminal use of firearms.

They need to have a good understanding of the scale, nature and threat of firearms criminality affecting the UK and to be able to communicate this effectively within the UK to law enforcement partners and other agencies including HMG and the Home Office, whilst also engaging effectively with international partners.

NABIS Intelligence Analysts undertake all analytical functions within NABIS in relation to the preparation of National Intelligence Model products, for all issues relating to Gun Crime, in accordance with nationally agreed principles.

They assist in current intelligence operations by collating, researching, and analysing information and intelligence from all relevant sources for the preparation of Strategic Assessments.

They use crime pattern analysis techniques to determine patterns, trends and links within crime and incident information, and identify areas where further information must be collected.

They prepare briefing notes, deliver presentations for audiences outside of NABIS and liaise with staff and senior officers across the UK and internationally to obtain and/or share intelligence information.

They develop and maintain knowledge of current intelligence together with the crime trends and patterns relevant to the understanding of firearms crime nationally.

They provide support for the performance analysis and database function within NABIS by researching and analysing performance and organisational information available from the assessment of Force Performance Metrics & the NABIS Database.

The Information Assurance Officer ensures a high level of information assurance across the organisation by working across force systems and locations to identify areas of risk in relation to secure and appropriate information management processes, and advises on improvement activity as a result of their findings.

They provide data for statutory obligations including Freedom of Information requests.

In addition, they carry out dip samples / audits of Force systems, as required by legislation, and other national or local requirements in order to ensure appropriate use of systems and to identify any information management concerns.

They also support external training to forces and as such will be expected to have facilitation experience or be prepared to be trained to deliver courses on NABIS systems.

It is the responsibility of the Head of Policy and Strategy for NABIS to provide leadership, management and oversight of NABIS policy and strategic development, including leading the NABIS Strategic Co-ordination Team and supporting the NPCC Criminal use of Firearms (CUF) governance.

This includes: leading the future direction of Strategy and policy development at NABIS in terms of latest thinking, innovation and approaches; providing strategic advice & guidance to the Head of NABIS and senior leaders on the full range of strategic planning issues and firearms developments; being accountable for the design, development and implementation of the NABIS governance and performance framework; identifying service improvement issues across the function; and leading on the development of NABIS IT&D.

The NABIS Performance Lead is responsible for management of the NABIS Performance Management Programme and the NABIS Force Performance and Inspection (Quality Assurance) Programmes. They also provide support to the Head of Business Support, when required.

They manage the NABIS performance function to ensure that forces are complying with the NABIS Memorandum of Understanding with regard to the recording and submission of ballistic material to NABIS, whilst also overseeing completion of force audits and challenging and escalating performance issues within forces and agencies to assist in improving force performance.

It is their duty to manage and lead the NABIS Liaison function to maintain the key strategic and operational interface between NABIS and Law Enforcement in the UK, and they will also prepare comprehensive, complex, written organisational strategic reports as part of their work.

The NABIS Performance Analyst provides a performance analyst function identifying, researching, and analysing known and emerging performance and organisational threats, issues and trends.

They use a creative and innovative approach to understanding and communicating performance issues both internally and externally. It is their responsibility to develop data collection strategies with internal departments, external Police Forces and agencies in order to create products to support senior decision makers. They also provide analytical support to the three areas of NABIS (Business Support, Intelligence Cell, and Forensics) and carry out projects, reviews, assessments and evaluations as required.

The NABIS Liaison Officers provide the UK force liaison and force performance compliance function between NABIS and the forces, and agencies served by NABIS.

They support the NABIS performance framework to ensure that forces are complying with the NABIS Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which relates to the recording and submission of ballistic material to NABIS.

They support In-Force Performance and Inspection (Quality Assurance) Programmes by assisting forces in managing internal compliance and inspection programmes. Furthermore, this helps forces and agencies to develop their processes and exploit existing opportunities in the areas of forensic science & intelligence to improve force and NABIS performance.

Another responsibility is providing the “investigative and intelligence bridge” to assist forces and agencies to investigate and tackle high risk firearms activity.

They work as part of a national liaison team with geographic responsibility for each one of the three law enforcement regions in the UK (currently North, East and West).

The NABIS Systems and Information Manager must ensure that the ICT tools and systems in place across NABIS reflect the business needs of NABIS and our user community, and are monitored and reviewed, identifying opportunities to improve.

As NABIS Information Asset Owner the post holder will be accountable for ensuring confidentiality, integrity and availability of information held by NABIS. A key aspect of this role is ensuring that NABIS governance is operating to ensure delivery of the strategy and delivery plan.

They manage the national NABIS forensic and intelligence database, and develop coherent strategies, policies, processes and Standard Operating Procedures, and will prioritise database developments. In addition, they are responsible for the delivery of the modular database training programme nationally.

The role involves collecting, understanding and transmitting business requirements for NABIS systems and translating these into functional specifications and detailed options, whilst also testing solution and resolving relatively complex problems and issues through their own knowledge or liaising with Law Enforcement Agencies and third party suppliers.

The post holder is responsible for effective financial management and budgetary control on behalf of the Head of NABIS. This requires liaison and negotiation with 43 UK Police Forces to ensure costs attributable to NABIS are accurately identified and recovered from forces.

They work with West Midlands Police (WMP) Finance & HR departments to lead on and manage complex National Contracts & Procurement Tenders with WMP & the Home Office, and they provide support to funding papers, national agreements and national projects to deliver NPCC funding, S22A Collaboration Agreements and support Police Transformation Fund bids to the Home Office for NABIS.

A key aspect of the role is to negotiate and influence engagement with WMP (Host Force) to ensure NABIS Business Services are delivered efficiently and effectively.

This particular role provides an efficient administrative or technical service for the NABIS Intelligence Cell, including the maintenance and development of systems and procedures, performance management, and the development and supervision of staff where required.

They support the intelligence research and administration function of NABIS, targeting firearms related criminality.

NABIS Business Support Officers provide front line support and advice on criminal use of firearms intelligence issues to law enforcement colleagues by performing National and International firearms tracing requests by liaising with Europol, Interpol, Firearms Manufacturers, UK Military, Border Force, National Crime Agency, and UK Police Forces.

They conduct research concerning firearms nominals utilising national systems including PNC and PND and in-house / local systems to provide information for nominal profiles and for data sharing with other law enforcement agencies including the NCA and internationally with Europol, in addition to keeping the NABIS database up to date with the results of search research where appropriate.

They support quality assurance assessments and monitor and report on requests, problems and anomalies within the NABIS Intelligence process.

They carry out administrative tasks in the delivery of the Criminal Use of Firearms portfolio, collating, managing, and disseminating intelligence reports.

They assist with strategic assessments, practice advice and doctrine relating to firearms crime for the law enforcement community and government, preparing reports and assessments, and delivering clear presentations where appropriate, ensuring that the medium used is suitable for the audience.

The NABIS Secretary provides an efficient and quality driven service on behalf of NABIS to the Senior Leadership Team as well as national and international law enforcement stakeholders, partners, and NABIS staff.

They arrange and co-ordinate high level and technical meetings, and produce detailed minutes in a timely manner. They have ownership of all event and conference arrangements. As the first point of contact for the public they need to effectively deal with any requests for NABIS information. They monitor and report on requests, problems and anomalies within the NABIS Business Support Team.

This role is responsible for managing and developing the Media and Communications Strategy for the ACPO Criminal Use of Firearms (CUF) portfolio and NABIS.

They deal with a wide range of complex media issues, and develop, inform, and advise on media issues relating to the ACPO CUF & NABIS media strategy. This also involves managing, developing and updating NABIS internal and external media content, including the NABIS website and other electronic media such as Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, to improve and enhance the image of NABIS. 

It is their responsibility to: produce and develop high profile PR and marketing campaigns for both internal and external consumption on a national basis; assist in the financial management and budgetary responsibility for large-scale/high profile PR and marketing campaigns; manage and develop the marketing of NABIS work strands to internal and external stakeholders; and develop communications working practices within the department.

The role holder is responsible for the day to day running and delivery of allocated business change projects, resulting in the successful delivery of the required business benefits. This involves the design, planning, co-ordination, facilitation and monitoring, and reporting of change projects; developing the capability required to embed service improvement tools and techniques.

They manage a team with responsibility for the identification of service improvement opportunities across the National Criminal Use of Firearms portfolio, with particular focus on NABIS, delivering support to the national programme of transformation in line with the NABIS Strategy, and ensuring value for money is achieved. 

It is their responsibility to define and agree business requirements for all areas across NABIS and to introduce solutions to meet these requirements; taking responsibility for the day to day running and delivery of the projects, resulting in new ways of working and identified business benefits being realised.

This role ensures the delivery of a number of transformational projects and change initiatives to attain improved service delivery against SLAs in line with the NABIS Strategy and delivery plan.

Ultimately, they are there to ensure continuous improvement of process, policy, and value for money across the criminal use of firearms national portfolio with particular focus on NABIS.

The role of the Business Analyst is to articulate business change needs, assess the impact of those changes, capture, analyse and document requirements, and then support the communication, progress, and delivery of those requirements to the Project Lead and all relevant stakeholders.

They support the Head of Policy & Strategy in undertaking reviews of functions to design new elements of the NABIS operating model ensuring alignment with the organisational operating model and developments in IT systems.

This involves conducting process optimisation exercises to identify areas of waste, value, and improvements to ensure the most efficient and effective use of resources whilst providing best value service to the customer.

Some of the key activities undertaken include: collecting, understanding and transmitting the business requirements for the project, and translating these into functional specifications and detailed plans; developing ‘as is’ and ‘to be’ states for business processes and operating model designs; and planning and guiding the delivery of small/medium sized projects, overseeing the work of in-house teams or contractors.