An app and website to break down communication barriers

Making it easier for police officers to break down communication barriers with the public.

Nobody wants our police officers spending too long on paperwork, we want them on the beat.  But it’s also incredibly important for our police forces to be open and tells us what they are doing in our communities. Tantrwm helped Dyfed-Powys Police solve this problem by changing the way they communicate with the public, making it quicker to do and accessible to everyone with an internet connection. Through a website and an app.

We created the new website for DPP in 2009.  We decided that the most efficient way of building a complex website which is updatable by someone with minimal I.T. skills, whilst keeping costs down was to use an Open Source Content Management System (CMS).  Dyfed-Powys Police are the first force in Wales to go Open Source.  Within 3 years every police force in Wales had an Open Source website.

We chose a simple to use CMS that meant police officers could update the website themselves.  We trained 250 bobbies how to tell their local communities what their monthly priorities are.  Meaning vital policing information could be made public within minutes of being actioned. The Dyfed-Powys Police website was the first and at the time of writing is still the only truly bilingual website for a police force in Wales, allowing Welsh speakers to access information in the language of their choice.

DDP is the geographically the largest police force in the UK, with most of it’s jurisdiction covering vast rural areas.  Our website meant that people from the remotest corners could see exactly what their police force is doing, without having to travel to public meetings.

One of the challenges of managing a website for an organisation like Dyfed-Powys Police is that you can very quickly become front page news.  In 2012 a crime occurred that resulted in the website getting 100,000’s of hits over a period of days.  The incident and it’s aftermath was actually the fifth most Googled item of 2012 in the UK.  And all this at a time when the information being published on the website was of critical importance.  Tantrwm worked around the clock getting everything in place to ensure that our servers could cope with this added strain.

Tantrwm and Dyfed-Powys Police’s partnership hadn’t finished innovating.  We created a mobile app, available on iOS and Android, that made it even easier for the public to read what the police are doing in their communities.  The app allows the public to find the nearest police station, as well as keep up to date with all of the policing priorities for their local area and see when their next public meeting is being held.   Again, we were this first police force in Wales to have such an app, again totally bilingual.

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