Importance of quality, timely, and detailed incident data: Lessons from the Seattle Police Department
The use of timely and accurate localized data to drive law enforcement operations toward more efficient and effective resource deployment is the benchmark for 21st-century policing.
For today’s law enforcement and public safety chief executives, high-quality, detailed data is paramount for effective decision making. In addition to open source data, law enforcement agencies have records management systems (RMS), incident-based reporting systems, and information sharing tools that provide data on crime incidents, suspects, victims, and arrests. Together, these resources can be assessed to identify local and regional trends, to effectively deploy resources, and to support data-driven policing initiatives. In today’s environment when agencies are confronting budgetary and staffing challenges, it is especially important that law enforcement executives continually leverage data to improve and expand decision making and to maximize available resources.