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back to article MPs label police IT 'not fit for purpose'

The Home Affairs select committee has branded police service IT as "not fit for purpose" and claimed it is damaging the police force's ability to prevent crime and disorder. In a report titled New Landscape of Policing, the committee calls on the Home Office to revolutionise police IT as a top priority. It says IT is the one …

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Holmes

MPs label police IT 'not fit for purpose'

Bit of a typo there. Someone added "IT" by accident.

<-- Proper copper.

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The words "label" and "police" might also been seen to be unnecessary.

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Anonymous Coward

Maybe 'label' was a typo for 'and'?

Bit of a stretch, but given the general competence it's possible.

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Anonymous Coward

Seems cheap

... in both costs and manpower given the volume of video data they're supposedly collecting and sitting on at Hendon. Perhaps they are just sitting on it for now though, without the ability to actively use it in regular investigations in which case "not fit for purpose" might be read as "not netting the low hanging fruit"?

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Anonymous Coward

As someone who used copper IT

Perhaps the big problem is that we are still using very old systems, like (shock horror!) Lotus Notes 6.0.

Which is not helped by the IT departments and bosses who are very technophobic, such as using Excel often used to make important databases, rather a proper databases.

AC - I could be fired if I showed an opinion.

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Anonymous Coward

the computer's fell down the stairs ...

... ven beat vemselves on their bleedin' dual-heads wif fone books!

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IT Angle

Quite right

What we need to do is develop a national IT program for the police force to sit proudly alongside our NHS one.

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Beaten to the punch!!!

That was exactly my comment. Just replace NPfIT with "IT police company" and you have a disaster all over again.

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Happy

@Thomas 4

"What we need to do is develop a national IT program for the police force to sit proudly alongside our NHS one."

Exactly.

Show them what *real* pain feels like.

£1.2Bn/yr. That's at least *tenfold* too low for a start.

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Deja vu, all over again

> the 43 forces in England and Wales use a multiplicity of different IT systems

Sounds like they need to take a leaf out of the NHS book and centralise and consolidate all their computer systems. That way they will get the benefits of a single, standard system and reduce the cost .... sorry. I can't go on, I'm laughing too much.

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Is there any

Government IT that *is* fit for purpose.

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Trollface

Governmental service 'not fit for purpose'?

That's news?!

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Anonymous Coward

"police currently spend £1.2bn on IT each year, and this did not represent good value for money"

I wonder how much of that figure was spent by SouthWest One on their project?

(http://www.liddellgrainger.org.uk/ian/MOGGTHEBLOG.html)

"In February the agency reported that it would exceed the £25m target set by the Home Office and deliver savings of nearly £30m."

SouthWest One were promising some savings in that range - none of which have ever been seen.

AC because they really don't like people highlighting what a piss poor job has been done on that project - and I'm up for an interview shortly

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Facepalm

shock horror

What? 43 forces working in isolation "locally" is not efficient?

Not to be too much of a pun... No shit Sherlock!

Now isn't "localism" the future of NHS IT? Shurley Shome Mishtake...

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Stop

Obviously a government quango would know all about this kind of thing... after all, successive governments have proved beyond doubt that they have a clear understanding of IT, and have managed to implement many large-scale systems on time, within budget and up to spec.

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The public sector: putting the IT back into shit since time immemorial.

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Paris Hilton

The government will probably see this as a good excuse to buy them all ipads.

Somehow

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N2
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Like most things

It took the politicians eons to suss what weve known for a long time,

Their lack of efficiency beggars belief - once my wife tried to report a hit & run accident but the computer was down. OK wheres the map? she asked but they diddnt have a map, something I find hard to believe & what followed turned into a 50 mile wild goose chase to be fobbed off & re-directed to report the incident at another station, then redirected from there to another.

Time is long overdue that the ivory towers these muppets perch in, were felled.

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Anonymous Coward

not ipads but

iPlods, surely

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I can see it now....

Old street cop bouncing down the street with a coffee in hand: Y-----M----C----A

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Not YMCA!

If we are talking pork barrels, then it should not be YMCA.

Instead lets try

Ayyy Ceeee Peee Ooooohhhh

:-)

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Mushroom

In other words

Let's hire Accenture and EDS/HP, give them a big bag of taxpayer's money and watch them piss it away.

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Anonymous Coward

Sounds like the civil servants are at it again.

Remember it was the civil service who wanted a single and impossibly large IT system for the whole of the NHS and they convinced the previous government that it was a good idea and that it should be implemented.

This report smells as if they are now trying to convince MPs that exactly the same is true of the police.

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Anonymous Coward

Interesting.

Several years ago, I was interviewed by Scotland Yard, and was told that they thought I might get bored so they gave it to the second best candidate.

Three months ago, while sitting outside an amphitheatre in France, I had a telephone interview with a guy in a Northern force who could only be described as quite brilliant. Alas, even though I was happy to cut my rate to as low as I could go, and commute up there out of my own pocket, they couldn't offer the job, as I'd be earning more than the Chief Constable, and as such it was politically unacceptable to pay a guy that much money. Their next move was to send it off to HR, and they'd attempt to find someone cheaper, which they won't be able to do, so they'll end up Tendering, and a big consultancy will win it, thus crippling his ability to do good work, cheaply.

It's no wonder there's problems. HR really haven't got a clue.

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Anonymous Coward

I was there when

SOCA was formed and SERCO, Fujitsu and CAPITA were all told to work nicely together as they moved 3 seperate parts to one site......I left less than 3 months after as none of them would investigate any problems claiming it was the other ones PC's/ cables/ switches at fault.

Police IT would work better if the police took it back in-house and trained their own staff, the cost of keeping contract staff DV cleared alone must be £30million per year

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WTF?

Oh the irony!

Politicians telling someone else they're not fit for purpose! In the words of the great Edmund Blackadder, I'm glad I'm wearing my corset, otherwise I'm sure my sides would have split with the laughter!

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Meh

£30m saved on a bill of £1.2Bn

That's 2.5%.

At this rate the deficit will be lceared in no time.

Hurrah.

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National or Local

The advantage of haveing 42 different police forces using 42 different combinations of IT systems is that you have competition, and you can sustain a market for those systems. The cost of an individual system failure is low, and it can be replaced by a better one from the experiances gained by other forces, or they can take a risk and do different. Change and Innovation can be distributed, and best practice evolve at a reasonable pace.

Go to a national procurement and you'll hve your systems supplied by one of the big SIs using Microsoft, Oracle or SAP and a few niche players. System selection will be low risk, change and innovation will be centrally driven, and complex. Large COTS implementations will not be able to evolve quickly, or at all depending on the whim of the vendor. The cost of changing direction or failure will be huge.

We need national warehouse systems and coordination, but not for everything. Locally we need the flexibility to focus on areas of local import. By locally I mean not only individual forces, but also the specialised national units.

Wholly national police systems would be a victory for criminals because they will be able to evolve faster than any national system, the beuracracy needed to run national IT in government is unbelievable.

This is the usual politicians making statements that seem great to people who know nothing of the reality. Daily Mail readers.

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