Microsoft and the Durham Constabulary have been working together to offer police officers state of the art technologies to aid in their investigations as well as department restructuring. Police forces are adapting to the rapid pace of change in technology and incoming data. Officers today are being indoctrinated with oceans of information from various sources consistently. Many police departments are finding it increasingly difficult to maintain budgets dedicated to 'keeping the lights on' or maintaining antiquated IT infrastructures. Rather than pour money into a leaky bucket, some police departments are looking to more iterative, agile and use experience-led technologies to power their needs at their desk and out on the streets.
Microsoft Dynamics is helping the Durham Constabulary successfully migrate their police infrastructure into a new age of technology. The Durham Constabulary is the only Police Service in the U.K. that obtained an “Outstanding” rating for their criminal investigations, thanks in part to their use of Microsoft Dynamics. By utilizing Microsoft Dynamics, the criminal investigation unit of the Durham Constabulary has found an improvement in the quality and usability of information in their inquiries. This level of reliability affords the police force more time on the streets rather than slugging through mountains of paperwork in an office. Many police agencies, Durham included, rely on a set of policing applications for Case, Crime, Intelligence and Custody management. They also need these applications to store efficiently, retrieve, and track data coming in from officers on the streets. For most offices, these applications were handled as standalone apps that resulted in crippling cases of interoperability. In order to avoid situations like that, offices would input the same data into multiple systems. 'Chain-like' data entry can lead to uncertainty in the accuracy of information as well as gobble up quality investigation time. This reality compounds when HR and office budget cuts contribute to shrinking workforces, as in the case of the Durham Constabulary.
Fortunately, Microsoft Dynamics offers a much more efficient alternative. “Microsoft Dynamics helps officers enter records more efficiently, track connections and solve cases using a simple, intuitive interface. It tracks records of engagements and actions, providing social insights and intelligence to investigators. Cases are being solved more quickly, even with fewer officers, thanks to this Crime and Intelligence management system,” according to Microsoft.
The Durham Constabulary also found that using Microsoft Dynamics helped them reduce cost and made the officers more productive while budgets were being cut. The use of Microsoft Dynamics also saw Durham consolidating a mix of semi-redundant applications, which led to more accurate reports and tracked information. What Durham found even more impressive was the easy to use drag and drop interface. Once again, this ease of use contributes to the time-saving training the Constabulary have to dedicate towards officers. This level of comfort helps to keep more officers out on the streets and less of them sitting through training and online courses. Aside from the cost and time-saving features, Microsoft Dynamics also offered Durham government grade security with multifactor authentication that coupled electronic credentials with usernames and passwords. This all amounts to “more criminals are being captured, making the streets safer,” according to Durham assistant chief constable, Dave Orford.