Choosing the right software for your agency is essential for your organization’s success. In today’s increasingly technology-driven world, police agencies are looking to improve their scheduling efficiency by leveraging the benefits offered by scheduling software. This being said, just like police agencies, no two scheduling systems are built the same.
Before purchasing a new scheduling software, make sure you carefully weigh all information regarding your potential software. Assess the features, compatibility, reviews and more to determine if this scheduling software will improve your agency’s scheduling efficiency and solve current scheduling problems.
- Is the software scalable?
- Does it have assisted implementation?
- How’s the customer support?
- Is it configurable to your agency’s needs?
- Does it have good reviews?
Is the software scalable?
Most police agencies experience growth at some point or another. Make sure the scheduling software can grow as your agency grows. Make a point of establishing a clear understanding of your immediate needs, as well as your future needs. Your new scheduling software should be able to expand to meet your changing needs in the long run.
Does it have assisted implementation?
The main purpose of scheduling software is to make your scheduling easier. For this reason, you should choose an easily adaptable and straightforward scheduling software system. Your officers and employees should be able to quickly grasp and understand its key features.
Before you buy police scheduling software, look into the implementation options. If you’re purchasing a more complex software system with multiple features and modules, look into what their assisted implementation looks like. The last thing you want is to have access to a complex software system, but be unable to understand and use it. Assisted implementation will ensure you get the software up and running quickly and smoothly. Remember to coordinate specific implementation dates with the software company so you know what training to expect and when to expect it.
How’s the customer support?
This is one of the most important factors to keep in mind before buying any software. Support can play a huge role in whether your scheduling software is a success or a failure for your police agency.
Be sure to be aware of the support hours offered by the software company. This is important for police agencies in particular, who run 24/7/365 operations. If your software goes down in the middle of the night, you want to make sure you have a support team available to help you.
Remember to also review the type of support provided. Is there a ticketing system with a specified service level agreement (SLA) response time? Or, will you need to wait on hold for hours for someone to explain why your expensive software isn’t working? Unfortunately, it’s difficult to predict the level of support and service your agency will receive ahead of time. This is why it’s important to read online reviews and testimonials from other police agencies.
Is it configurable to your agency’s needs?
No police agency is built the same. Before purchasing scheduling software for your department, make sure you’re able to configure the software to your agency’s needs and rules. Due to the nature of policing, you should look for software that offers built-in rules. Built-in rules will automatically create your shift schedules while factoring in agency rules related to hours worked, fatigue risk, training requirements and more.
A great bonus to any scheduling software is its implementation with other software. Closed software systems may cause more problems than solutions. Be aware that some scheduling software is only compatible with specific HR and payroll software, meaning you must also purchase the software company’s additional solutions to maximize the benefits of their scheduling software.
If your police agency is looking for just scheduling software, make sure you look for scheduling solutions that provide an option to link with your existing payroll software and more
Does it have good reviews?
Last but not least, you need to research the reviews of your prospective software system. Did this software work for other police agencies? How was the feedback on the modules and features? Look for reviews from every rank in the agency—constables, supervisors, administrators and more. You want your software to be beneficial to everyone, not just your administrators.
There’s no such thing as reading too many reviews before purchasing software. Reviews and customer stories are the best way of seeing how police agencies similar to yours have dealt with issues that you may be currently struggling with and the extent to which the software mitigated those issues.
The bottom line
Research is important when it comes to purchasing scheduling software. Your research should include looking into the software’s scalability, assisted implementation, customer support, customization and reviews.
Contact our team to learn more about InTime’s robust scheduling software built for police departments.