Five Considerations for Elected Officials Evaluating Policing Solutions

Accountability is a challenge for a police officer—or an elected official overseeing law enforcement. But quitting on the public’s trust is not an option.

Elected officials naturally want to focus on what’s most important to constituents, but confronting today’s law enforcement challenges with the wrong solution can lead to complaints—and even lawsuits.

Below are five recommendations for satisfying police departments, oversight boards, and an anxious public demanding better accountability and transparency from law enforcement.

1. Consider value rather than price

Price is important when considering agency management systems, but so too are functionality, adaptability, and accessibility for anyone involved in police management and oversight.

Better hiring procedures, professional training, and certification monitoring of police officers are often at the top of the public’s wish list.

While individual management systems can assist some of those functions, investing in a system that does all three (and more) will pay for itself in the long run.  

Even while being budget-conscious, some cities, such as Sacramento, are increasing law enforcement spending but shifting where that money is being spent. Instead of more guns, equipment, and armor, the funds are allocated to training, technology, and social services.

Increased spending on solutions that directly address public concerns about police conduct will illustrate to the community how seriously their elected officials are taking the issue.

2. Strong public safety features are a must

One-size-fits-all may work for some things, but when evaluating innovative technology systems designed to make law enforcement more accountable and efficient, look for robust features with the capability to track everything from certification to equipment.

An intelligent agency management system enables law enforcement supervisors—and the elected officials to whom they answer—to track an officer’s history from hire to retire, intervene when necessary, and weed out officers with a pattern or history of misconduct.

3. Beware “single-issue” software solutions

Choosing a software program based solely on a specialty niche can prove disappointing at best and expose a department to lawsuits at worst.

Many of the nation’s police departments are using facial recognition software because of the promised accuracy by its software creators.

Yet, in reality, the veracity of the results depends largely on other factors like lighting, image resolution, angle, and distance.  

Consequently, facial recognition software offers limited benefits due to both its accuracy in live police situations and the software’s narrow aim of purpose. For example, facial recognition software does nothing to address public concerns about officer training, certification, and accountability.

4. Don’t shortchange security

Earlier this spring, CNN reported that the Washington Metropolitan Police Department was victimized by a ransomware attack. The Babuk group claiming responsibility threatened to weaponize data they stole from the department’s database if the department did not respond within three days.

CNN reported the cyberattack on the Washington police department was the third known ransomware incident on an American police department in six weeks.

In addition to external security, an agency management system with suitable security protocols also manages oversight internally, such as only allowing authorized access to separation and disciplinary cases. Police data is sensitive data, and a breach puts officers at risk.

Systems that offer each customer a separate cloud hosting solution help ensure total data protection.

5. Seek out intelligent solutions

As mentioned in an earlier article about metrics measuring public safety, most urban residents oppose efforts to defund police or cut police funding.

Metro areas like New York City and Los Angeles have cut millions from police funding and have seen a substantial increase in homicides, shootings, and other major crimes since announcing those cuts.

Conversely, in early May during National Police Week, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced $1,000 bonuses for all first responders in the state, including 49,405 law enforcement officers.  

Smarter hiring, better training, and more vigilance at weeding out ill-fitting personnel are the top of the list for many overseeing police departments today, but defunding the police does none of the above.

There are better solutions with today’s technology to satisfy constituents’ desire for safer streets, less violent neighborhoods, and more accountability from local law enforcement.


Every police department and the community it serves may be different. Still, all have one thing in common: Having fewer police officers means more hours of duty and longer shifts, and that’s never a good way to enhance effectiveness.

There are proven and effective ways of improving police performance and transparency that are state-of-the-art and can reassure citizens demanding transparency and accountability from police oversight boards.

Adopting an intelligent agency management system and pairing that with appropriate analytics can help police departments track whether officers have completed the mandatory courses and earned the certifications needed to perform their duties effectively.

It can also improve hiring and training practices in general, enhance internal communications by standardizing case processes, and help departments better maintain administrative workflow to avoid costly liability cases.

If you’d like an evaluation of your existing law enforcement environment, let’s schedule time to do that and demonstrate how the Acadis® Readiness Suite can streamline your police administrative process and enhance organizational mobility.

Posted on May 27, 2021