NEWS RELEASE: Winnipeg Police Service and Solvera Solutions Named Project Management Award Finalists
Winnipeg - The local chapter of the Project Management Institute Manitoba (PMI) has selected an innovative and highly successful Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) project as one of three finalists for its prestigious 2020 Project of the Year Award.
The Court Notification System (CNS) project, completed in 2019, was designed to address process deficiencies involving fax and paper-based notifications of court appointments and related cancellations that resulted in significant overtime expenses and inefficient use of officer time.
The project team, comprised of WPS staff, local IT consulting firm Solvera Solutions and members of Manitoba Justice, exceeded all of its objectives, reports Inspector Chody Sutherland: “Our business case identified the opportunity to reduce overtime expenses, improve work/life balance and re-allocate member time to higher value work addressing WPS’s strategic goals: Less Crime and Victimization, Engaged Communities, Healthy Organizations and Efficient and Effective Service.”
In its first year, the new electronic CNS has enabled the redirection of more than $750,000 dollars of savings to other critical services in our city, with an additional $900,000 of projected savings per year going forward. It’s one of our most successful projects ever.”
PMI Manitoba President Michael Hanna notes that “the CNS project reflects a suite of project management best practices, including well-defined project scope, effective stakeholder engagement, solid risk management and organizational change management. These are just some of the important criteria that will be evaluated among our three finalists in selecting our Project of the Year.”
Juan Saldivar, Vice-President of Operations of the PMI Manitoba chapter, has been accountable for the awards committee for more than six years: “The chapter recognizes Solvera’s continued support in our shared goal to make an impact in the local project management community. By submitting the CNS project and making the final round, Solvera and the Winnipeg Police Services have shown a commitment to excel and demonstrate their superior performance in the application of project management practices. We would like to congratulate Solvera and the Winnipeg Police Service on their continued success.”
WPS Court Notification System Backgrounder:
Members of the WPS are required to attend court trials as part of their duties. When court attendance is scheduled outside of normal working hours, this results in overtime pay for members. When court attendance is required during normal working hours, it takes members away from their regular duties. Before the launch of the project, the court notification process consisted of these steps: Government of Manitoba Department of Justice sent the WPS their court appearance notifications via a dispatch process using Commissionaires. If the WPS’s attendance was no longer required for a court appearance, Justice sent a cancellation notification to the WPS by fax. These cancellations were then communicated to the member involved.
This process sounds simple enough, but there were numerous inefficiencies associated with the dispatch and fax-based cancellation process. Faxes regularly went missing, were sent to the wrong fax number, or were not received and processed in a timely manner. Consequently, members of the WPS often did not receive their cancellation notices, resulting in unnecessary court attendance and overtime costs.
WPS and Justice saw an opportunity to streamline and automate the court notification process and were ready to work together to develop an automated Court Notification System (CNS). CNS replaces the current process with enhanced electronic notifications, improving the efficiency, reliability, and timeliness of court appearance and cancellation notifications.