Keeping officers on the beat

With officers spending a large proportion of their time completing incident-related paperwork, Wiltshire Police needed a mobile solution that could keep officers on the front line in the fight against crimeFormed in 1839, Wiltshire Police is the UK’s oldest county police force. It serves 635,000 residents across 1,346 square miles and employs over 2,200 people. Its motto is simple: to be the first, the best and to provide safe, satisfied and confident communities.
Orange worked with Wiltshire Police to keep 1,200 officers on the beat, productive and focused on reducing crime by providing them with the tools to perform traditional desk-based tasks on the go.

Who is Wiltshire Police?
Wiltshire Police is led by a dedicated team of around 1,200 police officers and 1,000 police support staff. Serving diverse communities that span the urban centres of Salisbury and Swindon to the rural towns and villages across the county, Wiltshire Police also provides support for major events in the UK’s calendar, from Glastonbury and WOMAD to the bi-annual Solstice at Stonehenge.
Regulated by the Wiltshire Police Authority, which scrutinises performance and reports to the community on how the Force is performing, Wiltshire Police prides itself on its strong relationships with local communities and the county’s position as one of the top five safest areas in the UK.

What was the challenge?
As part of its Policing Pledge, Wiltshire Police is committed to keeping officers on the front line in the fight against crime. Having highly visible officers engaging with communities, and being readily available, plays a key part in supporting this vision.
But with officers spending a large proportion of their shift at the police station completing incident-related paperwork, Wiltshire Police needed a mobile solution that could help save officers’ time, keeping them productively on the beat.
Any chosen solution would need to provide secure, mobile access to critical data from a range of Government sources, including the Criminal Records Database and the Police National Computer.

What is the solution?

Although officers still use their Tetra Radios as part of their daily communications, they can now perform traditional station-based paperwork from any location over the Orange network.
Nine hundred front-line staff from Wiltshire Police have been issued with HTC P6500 PDA devices, providing secure and reliable mobile access to essential databases.
Access to images is also enabled on the devices, allowing officers to perform more detailed personal and roadside checks – without needing to contact the control room. The handset also provides access to up to date law and procedure information together with duties whilst on patrol.
Officers have access to work emails through their mobile device, which is becoming an increasingly popular way for them to quickly and easily interact with residents, colleagues and management.
As a result, officers now have access to the intelligence they need to make more informed decisions when on patrol, and conduct station-based administrative tasks from their mobile devices. However, should the device be lost, they can be immediately, and remotely, disabled making it impossible for any information to be compromised.
“Wiltshire Police has particular challenges to other forces around the country, in that we have diverse communities scattered across both rural and densely-populated urban areas,” said Marc Pulverman, project manager (Mobile and Remote Working) at Wiltshire Police. “We need to ensure that officers are always available and able to support these communities. Visibility of officers plays a central role in communicating this message to residents. By mobilising station-based applications, such as the Police National Computer, we’re able to ensure that our officers’ time is best spent supporting their communities and preventing crime,” he continued.  
Keeping on the beat
Peter Carthew, corporate business manager for the public sector at Orange UK said: “Wiltshire Police is testament to how mobile technology can facilitate a modern approach to policing. By reducing paperwork for officers, they can stay highly visible to the public, and make the most of when they are on patrol.”

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