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Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) and Police Records Management (RMS): The Importance of Integration

Law enforcement officers regularly rely on Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) in their day-to-day operations. While responding to emergent situations, CAD is necessary for dispatching first responders, conveying information, and ensuring that officers can act quickly and efficiently.  

Computer Aided Dispatch Software (CAD) is a powerful tool used by law enforcement agencies to help manage and respond to emergencies. CAD systems are used to track and manage calls for service, dispatch officers to respond to incidents, and provide real-time information to officers in the field. 

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security further explains that  

“Emergency responders in the field can receive messages initiated by CAD systems via their mobile data terminals (MDTs), radios, and cell phones. CAD systems may also interface with a geographic information system (GIS), an automatic vehicle location (AVL) system, a caller identification (ID) system, logging recorders, and various databases. A unified CAD (UCAD) system interfaces with multiple agencies and/or computer systems that serve law enforcement, fire, and EMS and provides communication across multiple agencies and jurisdictions.” 

CAD systems are typically integrated with other law enforcement systems, such as records management systems (RMS) and crime mapping software. This allows officers to access data from multiple sources, such as criminal records, incident reports, and other information, which helps officers to respond quickly and accurately to calls for service.  

CAD systems also provide officers with real-time information about the location of other officers. This allows them to coordinate their response to an incident. This helps to ensure that officers are responding to the right place at the right time. 

In this blog post, we will explore how CAD systems are used by law enforcement agencies and the benefits they provide. We will also discuss how CAD systems are evolving to meet the needs of modern law enforcement agencies. Finally, we will look at how CAD systems are helping to improve officer safety and efficiency. 

CAD and RMS: Why Integrations Matter 

Whereas CAD is an active, time-sensitive tool, a record management system (RMS) helps store, record, and concisely track incidents and information for organized documentation and reporting. Both are essential tools for law enforcement officials, but both, also, present different functionalities.  

By integrating CAD and RMS platforms, law enforcement officials can access and share critical information quickly and accurately. For example, when an officer responds to a call for service, the CAD system records the location of the officer and the type of call they are responding to. This information is then shared with the RMS, which stores it in a secure database.  

Integrating CAD and RMS also helps law enforcement officials improve their efficiency. By having access to the same information in both systems, officers can quickly and accurately assess the situation and respond accordingly. This helps them save time and resources, which can be used to respond to other calls for service. Additionally, integrating these two systems allows officers to access information from both systems simultaneously, which helps them make better decisions in the field. 

A strong CAD and RMS integration helps law enforcement officials improve public safety. Integration allows officers to access the same information in both systems and, therefore, quickly and accurately assess situations and respond accordingly. Time is of the essence when responding to emergency calls, and quicker turnarounds can help reduce time and improve public safety.  

Additionally, and importantly, integrated CAD and RMS systems give officers detailed information and data from both systems simultaneously, which helps officers make better decisions in the field. This is essential when promoting improved trust between law enforcement officials and the general public, particularly as citizens demand increasing transparency from law enforcement agencies. Too, modernized RMSs reduce user error through streamlined report validation, which also furthers community trust and justice. 

computer aided dispatch software and CAD systems

Choosing an RMS—One Size Does Not Fit All 

There is a wide range of RMS to choose from, but when you’re looking to integrate your CAD and RMS, there are a variety of aspects you should consider.  

Modern Technology  

While some software companies provide an expansive suite of products for every potential need, it’s important to consider quality. In our current day and age, technology is constantly evolving, so there’s no need to settle for older platforms that will quickly become obsolete. Consider, also, that the older tech you choose, the sooner you’ll encounter tech problems, which will minimize a quality RMS’s ability to maximize users’ time.  

Cloud-Based Storage 

Cloud-based storage software is an example of a modern feature that all RMSs may not offer. Particularly, cloud storage is vital for sharing information across devices and allows users to access it anywhere, anytime. This functionality also lends itself to data-sharing across jurisdictions, which both promotes officer safety and helps improve community safety outcomes.  

Real-Time Access to Technical Support Teams 

There’s nothing more frustrating than a Tech Support team that’s comprised of robots, answering machines, and, well, anything but an actual human. Consider what support services an RMS software provides—and whether you’ll have access to the support you need when you need it.  

CivicEye is proud of our 24/7/365 Technical Support, and it’s at the heart of everything we do. Additionally, our team will provide continued training services to make sure your team is confident in how to implement your RMS and maximize its potential.  

CAD, RMS, and JMS Integration  

When your officers are in the field, they shouldn’t have to spend valuable minutes, or even seconds, digging for outstanding warrants. When investigators are narrowing down suspects, they shouldn’t have to spend hours, or days, searching for a suspect who’s sitting in jail. By integrating CAD, RMS, and JMS (Jail Management System), officers can instantly access all of the data they need, directly when they need it.  

Additionally, this is where data-sharing across jurisdictions becomes vital. When trying to solve cases, it’s important that officers can access records of neighboring counties. By sharing data, agencies can effectively work alongside one another to solve cases more efficiently.  

How CivicRMS Aptly Integrates with CAD and JMS Partners 

At CivicEye, we’re proud of our RMS’s seamless integration with existing CAD and JMS platforms. CivicEye has partnered alongside GeoConex and BluHorse to offer some of the most cutting-edge integrations, combining the powers of best-of-breed RMS, CAD, and JMS platforms. 

CivicRMS 

CivicRMS is more than just an application; it’s a powerful architecture engineered for the unique requirements of law enforcement. Powerful search tools allow officers to search hundreds of millions of records in less than a second. Simultaneously, active validation checks streamline NIBRS-compliant reports and allow officers to spend less time writing reports and more time protecting their community. Interactive dashboards provide real-time information, alongside CivicRMS’s interactive modules for incidents, citations, warrants, arrests, evidence, and/or property.  

GeoConex 

GeoConex’s CAD offerings are comprehensive dispatching tools that allow dispatchers to easily distinguish the status of active calls, while simultaneously recording various status times, radio communications, history, and historical calls. Dispatchers can implement these tools for scheduling purposes (home checks, alongside pre-planned events such as funerals, and wrecker dispatch). GeoConex features both a Next Generation 911 (NG11) CAD and a Mobile CAD, both of which are designed for specific users.  

GeoConex’s Mobile CAD is already designed to be NG911-ready and is a tool designed for both dispatchers and supervisory personnel. In addition to the features of the NG911 CAD, Mobile CAD allows dispatchers to provide emergency personnel with street directions, describe hazardous situations, and/or recall medical histories related to the caller’s address. These tools effectively allow users to print reports and messaging logs from each dispatcher’s shift.  

computer aided dispatch (CAD)

BluHorse 

BluHorse Inmate Management System features modules carefully designed to streamline and organize information. Each of these modules can be added and implemented as needed and provide a variety of features. Some module examples include Document Management, Medical, Booking/Release Base System, Law Library, Incidents, and several others.  

By providing specialized modules, BluHorse helps officials organize their documents and information all in one modernized, secure location.  

The Takeaway 

CAD is a vital law enforcement tool, and it shouldn’t exist in isolation. By choosing an RMS that integrates with your CAD and JMS, you’re better protecting your officers and their time and improving community outcomes. An RMS that promotes data-sharing, such as CivicRMS, allows agencies to communicate with each other while solving crimes, while also promoting transparency and trust with the general public.  

Implementing modern technology is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. With updated software, agencies can multiply their task force by maximizing officers’ time, while also retaining current officers by minimizing their burden of repetitive, time-consuming reports. 

Additionally, by selecting an RMS that utilizes cloud storage, you can better protect your data and access it anywhere, anytime. 

Don’t rely on outdated tech to solve modern problems; reach out to our team at CivicEye today to learn about how CivicRMS can revolutionize your agency and how it can integrate with existing CAD and JMS platforms.  

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