Boeing has won a whopping £110m contract with Staffordshire Police, becoming its 'strategic IT partner' in a 10-year contract. The deal was awarded to Boeing by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) for Staffordshire.
According to Staffordshire Police, the deal, which includes running IT systems and a number of new projects, could exceed the £110m headline figure stated. The contract is intended to improve the capability and capacity of the force and to reduce IT costs.
As part of the contract, a ‘policing IT centre of excellence' - a collection of IT specialists and approaches - will be created for Staffordshire.
"The ambition I set out in 2013 for Staffordshire Police to be the most technologically advanced local police service in the country is already on track, but the partnership with Boeing will take the progress made to a whole new level," said Staffordshire Police and crime commissioner Matthew Ellis.
Policing in Staffordshire had "fallen short" of providing officers with the right technology to do their jobs, according to Ellis.
"As crime becomes more complex with borders for criminals swept aside because of the internet and social media, it is essential that we ensure police have the right technology to tackle crime locally and wider," he said.
Staffordshire Police chief constable Jane Sawyers added that officers had been "hampered by outdated technology and a lack of real-time information to help them do their job".
She claimed that the new contract will equip officers and staff with "state-of-the-art technology".
This technology will increase the visibility of officers on the streets and give citizens a better experience when interacting with officers as the police will be better equipped with information.
The force will, in fact, have better information than criminals, leading to earlier intervention, according to Sawyers. "This will help officers spot warning signs earlier due to the information they will have access to," she said.
The statement issued by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire contains no further information in regard to the new contract including the exact IT services that Boeing will be providing.
The 10-year contract period may raise some eyebrows as public sector departments have been asked to halt major outsourcing contracts, particularly those that leave the departments locked into one vendor for a lengthy period.
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