Office of Police and Crime Commissioner for the county awards strategic IT partner contract with police force to technology wing of aerospace and defence company
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) in Staffordshire has awarded a 10-year contract to Boeing to become the strategic IT partner for Staffordshire Police.
It is believed by the PCC to be the first partnership of its kind involving a UK police force, and has an estimated value of at least £110 million.
Boeing won the deal – which follows the announcement in January that it was the preferred bidder – from an original field of 52 companies.
The partnership will involve the creation of a policing IT “centre of excellence”, a collection of IT specialists and approaches.
Staffordshire’s police and crime commissioner, Matthew Ellis (picutred), said: “The ambition I set out in 2013 for Staffordshire Police to be the most technologically advanced local police service in the country is already on track, but the partnership with Boeing will take the progress made to a whole new level.
“Policing in Staffordshire, and across the country, has fallen short of providing their officers with the right technology to do the job. As crime becomes more complex with borders for criminals swept aside because of the internet and social media it is essential that we ensure police have the right technology to tackle crime locally and wider.
“Doing that requires closer working, co-ordination and communication with the wider public sector in Staffordshire but also the ability to share appropriate information more effectively with other police and security services nationally. In Staffordshire I am confident we are well placed now to meet the changing needs for the future.”
Back office integration
In a recent blog, Ellis highlighted a desire to integrate the back office support for the police and fire and rescue services, with the aim of reducing duplication and freeing up resources for more officers in both services.
He also spoke of introducing a Staffordshire Smart Alert app for the public and investment in Neighbourhood Watch.
Jane Sawyers, chief constable of Staffordshire Police, said that its officers had been hampered by outdated technology and a lack of real time information, but that over the past two years it has worked with the PCC on improving the force's capabilities.
In recent months this has involved the roll out of mobile data devices to police officers, an increased use of body-worn video cameras, and the roll out of the SPIRIT GPS system.
“This IT partnership with Boeing takes us to the next level and will see our officers and staff equipped with state-of-the-art technology, which will put them at the forefront of policing in the UK,” she said. “It will have a number of benefits for communities in Staffordshire including increasing the visibility of officers on the streets.
“Technology will also allow people easier access to their police officers. People will have a better experience when they interact with Staffordshire Police as officers will have access to more information wherever they need it, whilst in communities.”