Edward Claughton, President
PRI Management Group
February 2017

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Investment in a records management system can range from as low as $35,000 for a very small agency up to millions for a large one.  So with this expenditure, why do so many agencies not use the system as it should be?  Does your department utilize all of the RMS features? Worse yet, are you printing reports from the system and filing them? STOP!  TODAY! Such a practice is a complete waste of time, energy and money.  But let’s talk tech and wise stewardship of the public’s money.

In addition to police incident, accident, supplemental and arrest reports, your RMS may have a whole lot of features and modules that aren’t being utilized as they should.  Case-in-point: one recent agency we did some work for was a large Sheriff’s Office with a robust mobile field reporting, CAD and RMS system.  Said agency spent a lot of money on the system over six years ago.  To this date, less than half the system’s features which they paid for are being used. And, many of their business processes are still built around paper records management procedure.  A simple cost analysis would reveal that the investment is not being spent wisely and in fact likely would reveal a loss.

So, are you using all the features of your system? Many offer quite a few features that can significantly improve operations and eliminate the need to have various records in various systems.  RMS really can be the one place to manage most, if not all of your agency’s records:

  • Warrant management
  • Seals/expungements
  • Criminal intelligence
  • Crime analysis
  • Case management
  • Bar coding
  • Inventory management
  • Training files
  • Fleet management
  • Personnel files
  • Racial profiling
  • Court filing
  • Watch orders
  • Document/image attachment
  • Link analysis

Every RMS has a master name index, property index, vehicle index and so on. What this means is that every inmate/defendant, agency employee and all departmental forms related to these entities, and others, can be attached to and managed in RMS.  Inmate forms, property forms, personnel files and more can all be managed within one system- how nice would that be?

So if you’re going to spend the money, use what you paid for.  Otherwise, yours may be on the “just another government agency” list- one not spending wisely or maximizing efficiency. And, your work life could be a lot harder than need be.  Good systems make life easier.  Hopefully yours is one of them- and it’s being used as it should be.