The force has seen detection rates rise from 19 per cent in 1999 to nearly 26 per cent at the end of 2003 since it centralised its control room functions and introduced two new Police Enquiry Centres (PECs).
The TIBCO Staffware Process Suite provides the BPM tools for crime reporting and recording, as well as for tracking and updating court orders, bail and warrants. The solution was extended in 2005 to support missing persons and abandoned vehicles processes and be upgraded to further crime reporting and updates procedures.
"We were in a situation where constables were spending 33 per cent and sergeants 57 per cent of their time in the office," said Paul Duffy Infrastructure Products Analyst, ICT Group, Thames Valley Police. "To improve officer visibility and accessibility we had to significantly reduce time spent on paperwork in the station and get them back on the beat."
Duffy explained: "Two key areas of concern were identified â poor call handling and low crime detection rates. The force previously had 54 phone numbers, 17 fax numbers â many of which were only active during office hours and backed up by answer phones at night â as well as â999â. Detection rates were down as a result of data communication failure from one part of the force to another. Crimes were detected but not recorded."
To tackle these issues â and inherent public dissatisfaction â Thames Valley Police opted to centralise its communications systems to make better use of resources and improve crime-recording methods.
Thames Valley Police implemented two PECs at Kidlington and Windsor to record crime and answer non-emergency public calls, and it reduced the number of Control Rooms handling 999s from seven to two, centralising these functions in Abingdon and Milton Keynes.
Duffy added: "Integrating the TIBCO Staffware iProcess Engine with our applications has enabled the ICT Department to support the force in its program of major changes and improvements to the recording and investigation of crime within Thames Valley".
Ram Menon, senior vice president, Worldwide Marketing, TIBCO Software Inc., commented: "The advantages of a centralised approach using BPM are far-reaching. The processing time for crime reporting has been reduced dramatically, which means that investigations get underway much faster than the previous paper-based system. Also, when an incident occurs, the system ensures that operational information is received by the right member of staff as they need it. As the investigation progresses, information is made available to all relevant parties concerned. The time and cost savings to the force will be significant."