How speech recognition can support the vision of policing of the future

By Daryl Green, Senior Business Development Manager and Employee Director, Voice Technologies

Posted on November 16, 2021

Voice-to-text software enables police officers to complete reports in real‑time, by voice, via their iOS and Android smartphones and tablets.

The pressure on public services such as law enforcement, health and welfare to provide effective, accessible and value for money services that can be trusted can’t be understated.

All these services are seeking ways to make best use of their resources and key to achieving this is harnessing new technologies to introduce efficiencies in the short and longer term.

Policing Vision 2025, for instance, sets out a plan for transformative changes in policing in the UK over the next ten years. Published by the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC) and the National Police Chiefs’ Council, the Vision refers to the need for “…a more sophisticated response to the challenges we face now and in the future” and acknowledges that “…if we are to meet our communities’ needs, the service must continue to adapt to the modern policing environment.”

The Vision also describes what the police service will look like in 2025, specifying specialist capabilities, a professional workforce and joined up delivery, as well as highlighting the shift to digital policing which will “…make it easier for the public to make contact with the police wherever they are in the country, enable us to make better use of digital intelligence and evidence, and transfer all material in a digital format to the criminal justice system.” It goes on to state its purpose, pointing to the use of technology in realising its objectives: “There will be a whole-system approach to reducing and investigating crime as well as providing effective services and care for victims of crime. Functions and processes will have been reviewed with a focus on efficiency and effectiveness with a key enabler being the innovative use of technology.”

Speech recognition software for police forces

One form of technology that has the potential to make a significant contribution to the transformational changes set out in the Vision is speech recognition software.

Voice-enabled technologies have been around since the 1950s but are increasingly prevalent in our personal lives with the rise of smartphones and other devices. Policing in the UK is beginning to embrace this new tech which can directly contribute to keeping up with reporting demands and providing accurate, timely evidence.

Specialised voice recognition software such as Nuance’s Dragon Legal Anywhere (utilised for hands-free incident reporting and back-office document management), Dragon Professional Anywhere (cloud‑based, Enterprise grade speech recognition software), and Dragon Anywhere Mobile (voice recognition software on the move allowing you to use your smartphone to dictate text) allow incident details to be captured instantly, eliminating the need to decipher handwritten notes or try to recall details from hours before.

Police officers simply speak what they’d normally type – using voice commands to create an incident and recording all the details.

The Vision refers to the importance of being part of the community. Using speech recognition takes a fraction of the time it would take to type and can be done from any location, so officers spend less time at the office and more time being visible in their communities.

The phrase ‘value for money’ appears throughout the Vision document. As well as direct time savings, speech recognition opens up the potential for lowering costs across the entire documentation workflow using complimentary solutions such as Nuance WinScribe Dictation to streamline and automate dictation and transcription.

Here at Voice Technologies, we see first-hand the transformative power of the voice-enabled technology we deploy. It’s particularly satisfying to see it in action in the public sector – not only because of the time savings, greater levels of situational awareness and value for money, but also because of the boost in morale that those improvements bring.

Voice Technologies is working with UK police constabularies, guiding them through the process by selecting equipment and software that’s appropriate to their requirements, installing, training and deploying systems as well as providing ongoing support so that users get the most out of their speech recognition system.

Contact us to book a demo for your team.

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