Law enforcement agencies are a crucial part of our communities, but they’re not just responsible for serving the people and protecting public safety. They also need to protect the officers and investigators who do an often difficult and dangerous job, which means they need to equip them with mission-critical equipment, supplies and training while also remaining accountable for the tax dollars they spend.
That’s a big challenge, particularly when law enforcement has so much to deal with in terms of criminal behavior as well as social, political and community issues. And it’s why our team at Collective Data has worked closely with law enforcement over the years to create a comprehensive tool to help police departments manage their assets, assign equipment, and track officer training and certification with digital efficiency and accuracy.
In partnership with law enforcement, public safety and government agencies, we created a software solution called collectiveQuartermaster. It provides a comprehensive tracking, record keeping and reporting solution so you can easily manage all your important inventory such as portable radios, weapons, electronics, computer equipment, and cameras.
Our software also offers tools to manage employee records, including required licenses and certifications and tasks that are due or in the pipeline, such as weapon qualifications or active duty training. But the best way to understand collectiveQuartermaster and what it can do for law enforcement is to see how it works in the real world.
That brings us to the Tennessee Department of Public Safety (TDPS), which uses our software to track equipment, supplies and training for approximately 900 officers. Before it switched to our solution, the department was using another asset management system and relying heavily on Excel spreadsheets to track its inventory. But it was struggling with numerous inventory errors and an inability to see what equipment and assets were in use out in the field, and by which officers.
As Gary “Lane” Phillips, the department’s stores keeper says, “The system we were using was mainly for procurement. We tried to use it to complete our warehouse inventory, and it just didn’t work out very well.”
According to Phillips, there were high error rates in tracking assets such as personal equipment and troopers’ uniforms, and there was no visibility into where equipment was once it left the TDPS warehouse.
Ultimately, the department decided to look for a quartermaster system that would solve these problems and was designed specifically for law enforcement, and that’s what led the TDPS to collectiveQuartermaster.
Once our solution was deployed, Phillips and the department’s management were able to digitally track and maintain a detailed item inventory for uniforms, weapons, cameras and all the items issued to troopers. Every item could be checked out or checked in with a complete record and history of who was issued the asset, and detailed reports and an audit function were available to see and sort everything by location, asset category, assignment and more.
Using barcode capture technologies such as Zebra mobile computers, tablets, scanners and desktop or mobile label printers, each asset could be identified, scanned and tracked with automated accuracy and efficiency. And there were no more spreadsheets to maintain or error-prone manual processes to get in the way of accurate inventory and asset management.
CollectiveQuartermaster was a completely digital and largely automated system that allowed Phillips to quickly locate information on assets, personnel and even vendors, all with easy access to information and data on screen or in print or email formats. He could instantly know the location, return date, and availability of any equipment, and when items were due to be returned or needed scheduled servicing or repair. Automated email alerts notified him of what deadlines were coming up, what tasks needed to be completed, and what was in process.
Additionally, with collectiveQuartermaster’s budget and planning reports as well as its ability to track grants and funding, the TDPS had tools at its fingertips to better manage asset financials, which was a huge win in terms of eliminating unnecessary spending as well as budget oversight and compliance. But the department also unlocked additional benefits beyond inventory and asset management.
When evaluating collectiveQuartermaster against other asset management solutions, Phillips and TDPS team were won over by the software’s additional capabilities as well, including being able to track employees and their licensing, certification and training.
“Because it has capabilities beyond tracking equipment and uniforms,” Phillips says, “that’s what really sold my higher-ups. The system can also do fleet management and ordinance, so the Department of Safety can expand on using this program.”
To learn more about collectiveQuartermaster, visit our solution page or law enforcement page for more details and to request a free demo, or contact us right now at 1-800-750-7638. We’re here to help our law enforcement agencies keep themselves and the public safe!