Oldham News | Main News | Controversial part of new £27m police IT system is to be scrapped

Date published: March 22, 2022

The Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police has confirmed that part of their new £27million IT system has to be scrapped after feedback from staff.

While two-thirds of the iOPS (Integrated Operational Policing System) was implemented without major incident, the “PoliceWorks” section was a disaster, according to personnel using the system.

PoliceWorks software was used by officers in their day-to-day operations, but many employees had complained that system failures posed a threat to officers and the public.

Many said they were unable to log into the system and once inside were unable to retrieve essential information.

iOPS was implemented in July 2019, overseen by then Chief Constable Ian Hopkins.

His successor, Stephen Watson, promised to review the system and has now confirmed that PoliceWorks should be scrapped.
CC Watson said it was clear there were “underlying issues” “undermining our work performance”.

He continued: “It was clear from listening to staff feedback, from the independent assessment commissioned by the Mayor and HMICFRS, that PoliceWorks did not meet our requirements and hindered our ability to perform essential policing tasks. Moreover, the contract for the system was signed in 2016 and is due for renewal in June 2023, so we have reached a favorable moment to consider a change.

“After a lengthy review process involving technical evaluation and rigorous options evaluation, I am confident that we have considered all options available to us. I have concluded that although two-thirds of the iOPs system original systems work effectively, PoliceWorks cannot be adapted or fixed to fully meet the needs of our organization, so we intend to move away from the PoliceWorks system and replace it with a proven product already used by others strengths, rather than through the development of bespoke technology.”

The police chief said the decision marks and important milestone for a “resurgent GMP”.

He concluded, “I strongly believe this move will provide lasting benefit to the public, victims and our employees and, based on an assessment of the current market, will likely be more cost effective than staying with PoliceWorks.”

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Gordon K. Morehouse