Earlier this month techUK hosted an event looking at how frontline police officers view their tech. The focal point of the event was CoPaCC's recent Police ICT User Survey, which assessed the views of officers from every UK Police Force on the provision of ICT by their force. This event explored the results of the survey, and discussed what insights for suppliers the findings reveal. The panel consisted of a very strong line up of speakers who gave a 360-degree view of the police ICT market.
The session was chaired by Neil Beet, Director of Blue Lights Digital and member of techUK's Justice & Emergency Services Committee, who opened proceedings by sharing his reflections, both as a former officer and now an industry supplier, on technology supplied to the frontline. Bernard Rix, who as the CEO of CoPaCC, conducted the survey, then presented his key findings and explained a bit about the methodology.
The panellists shared their thoughts on what Bernard had presented. Simon Kempton, Police Federation lead for ICT, gave an operational front-line perspective, and spoke about the critical importance of end-user engagement in specifying requirements. Lord Wasserman, a Government Adviser on Policing and Criminal Justice, provided his view of policing and technology over the past few years, and gave some valuable international comparisons. And Clare Elford, the MD of Clue Computing, an established supplier of investigative technology, gave the industry view, highlighting what industry could learn from the survey, and emphasising that there are two sides to the provision of technology, and there are certain things that policing could do to improve the process too.
Some interesting points arose from the panel discussion and Q&A. The imperfection of current procurement mechanisms was acknowledged by both industry and police. And it was posited that there seemed to be a gap in chief officers communicating their technology visions to the frontline. The sense in the room was that the survey revealed that the critical importance of technology transformation was not being fully communicated across the entirety of forces.
Ultimately, the conclusion was that only by close partnership working between police and industry can the provision of technology be optimised for the safety and security of us all.
This event is part of a series of activities leading up to the Mission Critical Technologies conference in June. Find out more about this major industry event.