An evaluation framework for the selection of a mobile policing information solution
conference contributionposted on 17.12.2009, 11:52 by Rachael Lindsay, Tom JacksonTom Jackson, Louise Cooke
The bureaucratic nature of UK policing is currently being challenged. Following a Government initiative to equip 10,000 police officers with handheld computers by the end of 2008, the Government has invested £50 million into implementing mobile information management systems (MIMS) into UK police forces. This presents challenges including how to appropriately identify and prioritise user requirements to select from competing solutions. The paper develops an evaluation framework to evaluate objectively the diversity of solutions available, in order to ensure that the chosen MIMS solution best meets the needs of police organisations. The framework was developed through an empirical study within the Leicestershire Constabulary. This involved collecting qualitative data regarding user requirements via a focus group with operational officers who already had experience of using a MIMS. Firstly, a stakeholder analysis technique was used to identify, evaluate and address competing user requirements. Secondly, a feature analysis technique was employed to evaluate various MIMS solutions in an unbiased manner. Finally, the framework was verified through interviews and observation. Findings from the verification stage suggested the use of the framework had contributed to a relatively successful implementation of a MIMS. This involved the use of mobile data terminals in response vehicles with full access to systems utilised in the station, thus allowing ‘anytime anyplace’ crime recording; the Constabulary is the first in the UK to do so. The paper contributes to the domain of evaluating information management solutions and user requirements by creating an evaluation framework that can used by police forces and other similar organisations looking to adopt, design and evaluate a usable mobile information system (MIMS).
- Information Science