techUK’s Strategic Partnership with PDS: An Interview with Georgie Henley

Following the announcement that techUK launched its strategic partnership agreement with the Police Digital Service (PDS), Housing Industry Leaders sits down with Georgie Henley, Programme Manager – Justice and Emergency Services at techUK.

The agreement has been put in place to increase industry awareness of the remit and objectives of the PDS and techUK among the policing and supplier communities.

Speaking to Housing Industry Leaders, Georgie Henley said: “The Police Digital Service (formally Police ICT Company) has been a key partner of techUK for many years and this agreement formalises that relationship.”

Georgie Henley, techUK

Existing to support a more transparent and accessible market for technology and policing, the agreement aims to strengthen the relationship between policing and the private sector. It will also empower the sharing of public safety responsibilities.

“This agreement highlights an important step-change for more strategically aligned and collaborative commercial arrangements where solutions are developed together and underpinned by innovation,” Georgie explained.

“We want to increase industry awareness of both the support techUK offers to industry, and the remit and objectives of the Police Digital Service (PDS),” she continued.

Committed to their work with the PDS, techUK, Georgie said, want to “develop a plan for closer collaboration and engagement throughout 2021 and beyond.”

In order to develop a transparent and accessible market for policing tech, techUK recognise the need to provide opportunities for industry and policing to come together.

Why do the police need to digitalise?

There has been “a change in crime landscape,” said Georgie. With more crimes taking place online the existing ways of delivering services are becoming outdated.

“To respond to these new crime types, police forces need to digitally transform,” Georgie told Housing Industry Leaders.

To respond to these new crime types, police forces need to digitally transform

Georgie explained that the vision for digitalising the police force is clear. It is now a case of “delivering on this vision and navigating the challenges surrounding digital adoption across Policing and the Criminal Justice System.”

It is vital they become digitalised as technology has the ability to improve public safety outcomes and enable police officers to better protect the communities they serve. The introduction of new technologies such as CCTV, drones, artificial intelligence has already shown that digitalisation can make it possible to enhance public safety.

Warning there is still a way to go concerning the adoption of certain technologies, Georgie said: “A number of forces are excelling on their digital transformation journeys, some are still lagging behind.”

Hoping “to act as the critical friend to police forces on their digital transformation journeys” techUK will work with tech suppliers to help them navigate procurement processes by acting as a sounding board for industry feedback and expertise.

techUK is “committed to bringing industry and police forces together to collaborate, to provide opportunities to access the latest tech and innovations and to harness the art of the possible.”