Cardiff Council and South Wales Police are one of the five regional partnerships between police forces and local authorities that are involved in the first wave of the SNEN roll-out. Cardiff Council has been commissioned by South Wales Police to host the system based on a proven successful model using integrated Mitel IP telephony and contact centre technology. The new contact centre will provide the public with reliable advice and action on non-urgent crime, policing, community safety and anti-social behaviour issues.
Crispin O’Connell, Chief ICT Officer at Cardiff Council, said: “The single non-emergency number is a significant development towards improving the quality of life for residents, whilst also taking the burden of non urgent calls off police 999 services. Its success depends on highly skilled advisors having immediate access to multiple sources of information which requires an extremely reliable and integrated data and voice infrastructure. With Mitel IP communications integrated with our knowledge management systems, we’re confident that we’ve got the best possible solution in place to provide an excellent level of service.”
A brand new contact centre, staffed by over 50 new SNEN employees, contains two Mitel 3300 IP Communications Platforms (ICP), which fully integrate with the Cardiff Council’s main Mitel contact centre system. Customer service representatives (CSRs) use a new version of the Council’s CRM known as the SNEN Portal. Fully integrated with Mitel Commander, CSRs can send electronic information directly to the relevant service provider’s database via a standard XML data exchange. Advisors can also access a comprehensive GIS system that provides information such as street lamp and traffic light locations. In addition, a dual desktop enables the use of police command and control systems as well as access to the Police National Computer allowing the direct reporting of non-urgent crimes.
When the system goes live this summer, callers in the Cardiff area will be automatically identified by their location and intelligently routed to the new SNEN contact centre. Highly trained CSRs will either resolve the query immediately or will refer the incident to a new joint Police Tasking Unit or to other relevant service agencies.
Mark Mathias, Superintendent South Wales Police, said: “A high percentage of calls to the 999 number are not actually emergencies and often result from people simply not knowing who to call. The SNEN is designed to link service requests with the relevant service providers, whilst allowing the emergency services to respond more effectively to real emergencies. Cardiff Council has already proved to have exemplary contact centres and we’re confident that the service will run highly efficiently.”
Prior to the implementation, a detailed business benefits analysis involving Mitel, Cardiff Council and South Wales Police took place to obtain user acceptance and identify the critical success factors. The results pointed to multiple benefits including 24-hour access to non-emergency services, improved citizen confidence and better use of information.
Graham Bevington, managing director, Mitel UK, said: “Mitel has worked extremely closely with all the parties involved in getting the SNEN up and running in the Cardiff area and we’re confident that the service will be well received. Cardiff Council has already made a huge impact on improving local community services through its innovative use of the Mitel multi-media contact centre and we expect the SNEN facility to be equally successful.”