U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Planning Helps Agencies Embrace Technology

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2011
2 pages
This article discusses how law enforcement can successfully manage new technology.

This article discusses the importance and characteristics of careful planning and analysis when law enforcement agencies are evaluating, choosing, implementing, and managing a new technology. The process requires careful planning and analysis, especially for small agencies with limited resources. Included is a list of suggestions that any law enforcement agency should take into consideration when contemplating new technology: assemble a management team and ensure the team includes whoever is going to actually use the technology, whether a patrol officer, dispatcher or records support person; research all the issues and ask many questions; conduct a needs assessment to determine if the department truly requires the technology; review all the needs and try and consider the projected outcome; evaluate how the technology will integrate with other technologies the department is currently using or planning to use; weigh upfront and ongoing costs; review funding for purchase and be creative in researching grants and other funding alternatives; evaluate long-term impact to determine if there is a larger impact down the road besides obtaining the product; and evaluate long-term costs to determine the ongoing costs and replacement strategy should the equipment fail or need to be replaced.

Date Published: August 1, 2011