Cities must overcome many complex, systemic challenges to provide short- and long-term resiliency. These problems are made even more burdensome when cities function with disparate operations, siloed processes, and older technologies. If a city wants to be safer, it must first build a unified front.
This means diverse organizations, especially public safety agencies, must come together to develop strategies with common objectives and adopt safe city solutions. These provide connectivity between systems, collaboration between teams, and greater intelligence in operations. While there is no quick fix or singular system that can guarantee a safer city, there are solutions agencies can leverage to build frameworks to execute their strategies.
Let’s explore what to look for in a safe city solution.
Greater Use of Data
Meeting growing demands and hazards with limited resources means making tough decisions. But without data, it’s hard to determine priorities or explain policy to the public or politicians. As the Association of Police & Crime Commissioners and the National Police Chiefs’ Council recently reported, “Most forces do not have a thorough evidence-based understanding of demand, which makes it difficult for them to transform services intelligently and demonstrate they are achieving value for money.”
To meet this need, a safe city solution must be able to unify, analyze, and leverage data. This helps improve individual agency operations by removing process disconnects across its functions. It also provides the basis for reliable and controlled coordination between organizations. If cities are unable to meet these key prerequisites, they won’t be able to develop the necessary framework to effectively respond to a constantly shifting public safety landscape.
Safe city solutions must foster collaboration without needing to replace back-end technology. For most cities, budgets are tight and resources thin. However, it is possible to adapt existing IT investments to take advantage of modern technology without completely dismantling current systems. For example, by leveraging web architectures to expand access to data and capabilities or moving to the cloud to scale IT investments with elastic platforms that reduce risks and associated costs.
Any safe city solution should modernize city engagement with key stakeholders to create a free-flowing, collaborative, proactive, and contextualized information loop. Although siloed initiatives can achieve many agencies’ desired departmental outcomes, extending information and engagement across stakeholders is what truly transforms cities. It gives the systemic insight required to address and collaborate on complex challenges.
For more information about safe city solutions, check out the new white paper from IDC Digital Transformation in the Platform: Unique Ways of Solving Complex Safe City Problems.
Interested in exploring safe city solutions? Check out the HxGN OnCall portfolio.