Policing is under pressure: demand is at unprecedented levels, crime is rising, public confidence is diminishing and resources are stretched. To top it all, a new wave of leaders in policing in 2022 is younger and less experienced than ever before.

It’s a lot to think about, and as with most challenges faced by the public sector, there is no quick fix. But next generation cloud technology is providing a new opportunity to make a real difference – and quickly.   

However policing has a tendency to brand technology – and especially communications technology – as yet another problem to overcome, rather than opportunity to solve existing challenges. Yet there are dozens of technologies out there which would have an instant and dramatic effect on policing as we know it.

They are readily available, easy to implement and don’t rely on changes to existing police infrastructure. These cutting-edge solutions comes in the form of a cloud layer that overlays existing systems and has the power to integrate disparate data and separate departments. A small but growing number of forces are using such technology to transform the area of public contact: one of the biggest challenges for policing, though crucially important. 

Content Guru is working with a handful of forces who are paving the way in implementing omnichannel technology. Shifting from outdated non-cloud telephony systems to offering the full mix of communication channels drastically improves efficiency and the citizen experience.

Meanwhile, enabling operators to service demand through several channels simultaneously significantly reduces queues of frustrated – and potentially endangered – callers waiting to get through. The omnichannel approach gives the public more choice – routing more routine enquiries to digital and social channels frees up operators to deal with more complex, serious issues over the phone. 

There’s also a requirement for data processing capabilities that simplify the available information without overwhelming the operator. This technology is available and highly beneficial. It makes the intense workload more manageable by reducing the number of interactions and therefore opportunities for frustration. It allows for more positive user experience: simpler workflows, less tabbing between databases and more scope to monitor employees and support them through stressful interactions in real-time. 

These solutions are affordable, secure, reliable, and easy to implement and maintain – so there really is no excuse not to embrace them. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to start viewing technology as an opportunity, rather than a problem, for policing.  

Content Guru is a sponsor at Digital Justice & Policing on October 13 at the University of Strathclyde’s Technology & Innovation Centre