Vodafone announced today that it has won a major four-year contract to supply the Metropolitan Police Service with all its communication requirements.
The deal is part of a new National Police Framework Agreement for which Vodafone is the sole supplier. The framework is potentially worth millions of pounds more to Vodafone as any police authority can join the framework if they so choose.
Vodafone was an existing supplier to the Met along with several others, but won an EU procurement competition towards the end of last year for the National Police Framework Agreement.
Peter Kelly, director of enterprise at Vodafone UK, said: ‘It is a simpler framework agreement with more aggressive commercial offers within that. We’ve taken a longer term view of what other police forces will need and any of them can sign up to the framework.’
Although the value of the contract was not available, Kelly said the savings expected from the deal were broadly in line with the Government’s target of 25%. The deal covers voice, text and mobile broadband, but Kelly explained a key part of its offering was to help police forces become more efficient by enabling new ways of working.
He said the deal provided the Met with a more cost effective communications solution, better services to citizens and better job satisfaction for the police force.
By equipping the police with mobile phones officers can spend more time on the front line. They can access services such as the national crime database, check addresses or vehicle number plates, distribute photos of missing persons and input new information without having to go back to the station. Productivity rises as police can stay on the beat for longer.
Kelly said Vodafone was already talking to the Met about wider savings that more mobile ways of working can provide. With officers on the beat more, fewer fixed desks and back office systems may be needed, potentially releasing big savings on the amount of property required.