In many professions, law enforcement included, generic technology just doesn’t have what it takes to get the job done. We know the law enforcement technology is out there – but sometimes it takes more than just a simple piece of hardware to get things up and running. Unfortunately, many types of businesses and organizations have jumped aboard the technology train without being advised on the ideal technology set-up for their specific profession, wasting plenty of precious time and money.
Case in point, a friend of mine was recently telling me about the new technology system that was being implemented in her place of work, a medical office. She explained that the doctor insisted that the technology was a good thing, and would help the office run more efficiently. However, as my friend discovered, the new system was creating more work – and plenty of frustration – in the office. The problem was that the technology was not customized to meet the specific needs of this particular type of medical office.
So jumping back to law enforcement…Are the benefits of technology worth it? Yes! The advantages are numerous and definitely worth considering. In the case of the Buffalo Valley Regional Police Department (BVRPD) and many others nationwide, technology improvements have resulted in increased revenue, which the department, government, and community tax-payers reap benefits from.
BVRPD’s answer to the technology question was found in a customized eCitation solution. Tailored to meet the needs of backend administrative personnel and patrol officers alike, the eCitation solution was developed using a holistic “design thinking” approach; that is, taking in the broad view of operations and assessing the agency’s needs as a whole. This is what the department’s solution involved:
- Front Lines: Automated barcode scanning technology enables officers to quickly and easily enter data into the system.
- Back End: Administrative personnel receive legible, type-written citations that are easily processed.
- Judicial System: The court office automatically receives the reports from the agency for processing.
The BVRPD system has been shared with agencies across Pennsylvania and continues to meet similar successes. You can read the whole story here.
Wondering how your agency can move forward in updating its technology systems? Here are some starting points.
Remember that friend I mentioned from the medical office? If only her office had taken advantage of a cohesive “design thinking” model before implementing its ineffective system. Working with a collaborative partner pays off!