A NEW working partnership between Warwickshire Police and West Midlands Police has today been announced which will see Warwickshire benefit from the latest technology to enhance its policing within the county.
Since October 2018 when West Mercia Police took the decision to end the current strategic alliance arrangements with Warwickshire, the force has carefully considered all options available to delivering services.
It was always recognised that there would be a small number of business areas which would remain hugely complex to separate by this date and therefore would require more time and consideration as to how these services would be delivered in the future. These areas are:
- Transactional services (including payroll and HR service centre)
- Forensic services, and
- Detained property and evidence storage
Chief Constable Martin Jelley said: “Warwickshire has taken a holistic approach to looking at all options available for how these services could be best delivered, taking advantage of the latest developments in technology and new collaborative arrangements to the benefit of the public of Warwickshire.
“Having evaluated all of our available options, looking in detail at other providers of services, it is clear West Midlands Police has made considerable investments in its IT and transactional services. We have now taken the decision that collaborating with West Midlands Police in these two areas will enable us to take full advantage of their cutting-edge technology which we see will deliver major improvements for Warwickshire, ultimately resulting in more effective service to the public.”
Under these new collaborative arrangements West Midlands Police will deliver a range of shared services for Warwickshire from April 2021 under a cost-effective and affordable commercial agreement that ensures that Warwickshire Police can benefit quickly from improved technology. These include things such as payroll and systems supporting human resources and IT services.
As the agreement relates mainly to the technology and systems which underpin how the force delivers business functions, staff will still be retained locally within Warwickshire to deliver on-the-ground support, such as within Human Resources and IT. These remain vital functions which Warwickshire needs in order to operate.
Warwickshire is also discussing an option to purchase some Forensic Services from West Midlands Police while retaining its own local Scenes of Crime Officers within the county.
Chief Constable Jelley added: “West Midlands Police is widely known as a leading force on technology and we are excited to now be in a position to maximise and gain from this. We fully anticipate this agreement will bring significant and quick time technological advancements to Warwickshire.
“In total this would see around ten per cent of our overall services being delivered in a collaborated manner or through existing regional arrangements with the remaining being stand alone in Warwickshire.
“These new collaborative beginnings and modern technology advancements, coupled with the increases in police staff we are seeing as we rebuild the force’s own business areas and our uplift to more than 1,000 police officers in the county, all highlight an exciting future for Warwickshire Police.
“We are extremely proud of our 163 year history and are now looking forward to being at the cutting edge of policing and protecting the public from harm for the coming decades.”
By 8th April the majority of business areas will be re-established within and under the direction and control of Warwickshire and there has been much good work delivered by many people to enable a smooth transition while ensuring public safety.