How Each Role at Your Agency Benefits from an Integrated System
Every public safety agency is made up of different teams and individuals, all with unique responsibilities and challenges. With communities to protect and potential lives at risk, agency administrators know every agency role needs the best software solution available to them. The problem comes with the tendency to assume this means each role needs a DIFFERENT software solution to meet their specific needs. Not only is this “best of breed” approach expensive to law enforcement agencies, it also creates far more problems for each department’s processes, costing valuable time and manpower.
During critical moments that matter, it’s important to have data that is consistent and available throughout the lifespan of any given incident. From call-taking to reporting, and from investigation to incarceration, personnel should be working with the same information to help ensure data accuracy and integrity. Spillman Flex is a truly integrated public safety software solution that provides this kind of state-of-the-art technology for every department at an agency, allowing teams to work closer together with more accurate data. So what does that look like for each role?
When a call comes in, dispatchers have to work quickly to gather all the information crucial to making the call on which units will arrive on scene as fast as possible. If personnel have to enter information into one computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system to dispatch law enforcement and a different CAD to send out fire or EMS, not only does it take more time, but critical details can also be lost along the way. This doesn’t even take into account the additional time spent entering the data a third time if an agency has a separate records management system (RMS). Having one public safety software system to enter information into saves dispatchers precious time, and those preserved seconds can help save lives during critical moments.
Flex CAD allows dispatchers to only enter data one time and ensure all units on the ground have access to the same information. This is especially helpful for dispatch centers with multi-disciplinary responsibilities because dispatchers can easily share call information, add additional disciplines, and keep all parties up-to-date with the latest call information. When dispatchers want to supply additional information to an officer, they do not have to move to a separate platform to search for that data. With Flex’s Involvements® feature, all historical information is collected and available for the dispatcher to see and share immediately.
Dispatchers are not the only ones who benefit from an integrated, all-in-one system. True integration provides benefits for officers out in the field as well. First, when officers have access to real-time call data, they can see calls coming in and start en route before the call is even fully entered. Secondly, officers can use the details and notes entered into the system by dispatch to increase situational awareness of the call before they arrive on scene. Having immediate access to this information can be priceless from an officer safety perspective because it allows the officer to approach the situation or suspect in the safest way possible.
After responding to a scene, an officer has to gather testimonies and any evidence relevant to the incident. When working with an integrated system like Flex, the officer can fill out the necessary records and reports all from one system right there onsite while the details are still fresh in their mind. This feature also allows officers to spend more time out in the community and less time back at the office filling out paperwork. Once the information is entered, it can be accessed by all teams in the police department, including records.
Because the records team is in charge of responding to citizen records requests and submitting reports to concerned parties (such as city council, judicial courts, or the mayor’s office, as well as state and federally mandated UCR and IBR reports), having access to an integrated system with complete and accurate information is key. Using multiple platforms at an agency means that records managers and other personnel have to log into multiple systems to fill out a single report. It also means that users have to enter the same data over and over. With this process, things can get missed or changed along the way, decreasing the integrity of the data. Being able to work through a case in just one system can save users time and enable them to produce a more thorough report for detectives.
Flex provides records personnel with the Involvements® feature, enabling them to view automatically created relationships between related records, including names, vehicles, incidents, property, and more. This detailed history of each record is a quick and easy way for users to visually map out the information they need to gather for detectives or for reports to outside parties. It also shows related flags and warnings on associated records, which can help other departments, such as jail, to stay apprised of potentially dangerous individuals.
An integrated system continues to benefit other personnel long after an incident has occurred, particularly jail staff. When the suspect is apprehended, any related incidents to the individual become attached to their booking record, giving jail personnel the background information they need to know whether the inmate will be a safety risk for staff.
In addition, there is a lot of information collected in a jail setting. Using Flex’s fully integrated capabilities, other departments can easily look up the information entered by jail personnel, resulting in fewer phone calls to the facility. This saves time and energy on both sides and creates a more streamlined process from call to case closure.
Spillman Flex is unrivaled in its robust integration and data integrity. With more than 60 interconnected modules, customers receive products engineered for optimal integration and customization, while still benefiting from off-the-shelf pricing. Agencies in Weber County are a few of the more than 1,900 agencies across the nation that use Flex to better serve their communities. Hear first-hand from personnel in each role how it has improved their processes by visiting spillman.com/onesystem.