Police call system overhaul hit by extra cost and delays again

A stock photo of a call handler in Northamptonshire Police's Force Control Room
A stock photo of a call handler in Northamptonshire Police's Force Control Room
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A MAJOR overhaul of a system handling calls to police and the deployment of officers has been delayed and gone over budget again.

The cost of the contact management platform, shared between Hampshire and Thames Valley police forces, has hit £32.1m.

As reported, the IT project’s cost had already gone from £27m to £30m earlier this year.

At that point Hampshire police commissioner Michael Lane signed off paying £1.5m extra.

A TVP statement said: ‘The contact management platform (CMP) has now been developed. The next stage is to move the platform into our force IT environment to enable the transition from the current systems to take place. This work has now started.

‘As we have said from the outset it would need to undergo rigorous testing before being implemented.

‘CMP is a cutting-edge system for policing that has been developed by Thames Valley Police and Hampshire Constabulary in conjunction with Microsoft.

‘It will replace over 20 systems across both forces and help us to work more closely together in meeting the needs of our communities.’

Chief constable Francis Habgood said he had to be ‘confident’ in the system.

Hampshire police and crime commissioner Michael Lane said: ‘The agreed joint budget was last approved at £30.6m.

‘Overall budget allocation has now been set at £32.1m and a review of the project and its milestone costs is being undertaken so that I can, should it be appropriate, allocate any addition funding to complete the project to a standard that meets the go-live criteria.

‘The testing of and training in the new system is going well and there is real enthusiasm for the programme to go live. However, this must be done with complete confidence in the resilience of the carrier systems and the detailed resolution of any remaining bugs.

‘There remain some steps yet to be completed. Although the planned date for Hampshire go-live was set for July, as August is one of the busiest policing months of the year, any delay would need careful planning to set a new best date to go live.’