Next-generation Data Management for Public Safety Organizations
Data Management Challenges in Public Safety
Today more than ever before, public safety organizations worldwide are challenged to deliver top levels of service with shrinking resources. The effective use of information technology can help law enforcement, criminal justice, emergency response, and other public safety organizations meet their goals efficiently. Yet many organizations still struggle to reach their most mission-critical technology goals, including:
• Enabling smarter insights, decisions, and actions. The ability to access and analyze relevant data quickly and easily is fundamental to criminal investigations, effective situational awareness, intelligence-led policing, and crime prevention efforts. When data is stored in multiple applications or data silos, it can be difficult or impossible to leverage this data to its full potential, hampering decision-making — particularly in time-sensitive situations.
• Increasing operational efficiency. Many legacy public safety applications are not user-friendly. Few integrate well with other applications, and they can be difficult to change, leading to operational inefficiencies and duplication of effort and data. Operational applications should accommodate the way that users naturally want to work; ease of operations streamlines workflows and reduces errors and delays. This is especially important in public safety. Officers and first responders should spend their time in the field instead of struggling with rigid, inefficient, and non-intuitive applications.
• Increasing agility. Public safety organizations need to be able to develop and deploy new internal-facing and public-facing services quickly; integrate services and data with other agencies’ and departments’ systems; and incorporate new value-adding technologies and data types (for example, smart devices, wearables, video, etc.).
• Ensuring reliable operations — especially during crises. Mission-critical applications must operate continuously — even during power outages and the network failures associated with natural disasters, civil disorder, terrorist attacks, and other disruptive events. Data must be encrypted and synchronized across potentially thousands of geographically distributed precincts and agencies.