Going mobile for ‘maximum effectiveness’

A multi-million pound investment in mobile technology has “modernised the way officers work, helping them to operate with maximum effectiveness”.

Nov 15, 2017

A multi-million pound investment in mobile technology has “modernised the way officers work, helping them to operate with maximum effectiveness”. West Mercia police and crime commissioner John Campion says it has allowed police officers to be more visible in communities, leading to better policing. Officers across Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin are now equipped with smartphones and laptops, enabling them to work on the move and spend more time with the public. As officers no longer have to frequently return to police stations to do administrative work, on average, an extra hour per officer, per shift, is being spent out and about in the community, says Mr Campion. West Mercia Police Assistant Chief Constable Richard Moore said: “The alliance investment in technology is modernising the way we work, helping us to operate with maximum effectiveness. “The rollout of 2,600 laptops and over 3,000 smartphones means officers can achieve much more without the need to return to base to complete paperwork. These developments are helping us to improve efficiency, quality of service, and to protect the most vulnerable people from harm.” He said a number of practical real-life examples of how the technology has benefitted officers and communities have been reported, including: •Being able to complete paperwork for collisions at the roadside; •Using apps to check suspects against their photographs; •Speaking to translators over the phone; •Contacting missing people to ensure they are safe and well; •Time saving by being able to check logs with crucial information; •Locating officers in remote locations; and •Using a scanner app to file information. Mr Campion said being able to update victims and witnesses on the go and access local systems out of the force area was also improving efficiency. In one instance in Kidderminster, an officer was mobile working when he spotted a vehicle that he had coincidently just been researching. As a result he was able to stop the driver, and three people were arrested for money laundering and drug supply. “I promised to back the force with the investment and resources it needs to become more responsive to changing demands and this is exactly what I have delivered,” said Mr Campion. “Our communities asked for our police to be more visible and I have delivered this through this technology. Along with the extra time, officers have far more capabilities than they did previously, helping them to provide a better service to the public. We’ve caught up, and now I promise to keep up, to ensure this ordinary technology continues to have an extraordinary benefit for our communities.”

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