Cheshire Constabulary has signed up to the Cheshire and Merseyside Public Services Network (PSN) via a contract with Updata worth £2.28 million.
The deal will see Updata provide fully-managed wide area network (WAN) services to the force for at least five years.
Cheshire Constabulary estimated that joining the PSN, which acts a communications infrastructure ‘backbone’ connecting public sector bodies across the region, will allow it to save £117,000 a year.
The overarching regional deal with Updata was signed in March this year with 13 founding partners including Cheshire West and Chester Council, Cheshire East Council, Wirral Council, Merseyside Police, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service and Cheshire & Wirral NHS Partnership Trust.
The WAN provides connectivity to over 600 public sector buildings across Cheshire and Merseyside, facilitating greater collaboration, shared services and service transformation in the area.
Cheshire’s Police & Crime Commissioner John Dwyer said: “The new communication infrastructure will help to provide a more streamlined and flexible way of working not only for the Constabulary but for our partner agencies as well.
“In these times of austerity it’s vital that we can save money where we can, which we can then put to good use on the frontline, providing an efficient and effective police service.”
Updata’s sales and marketing director Isy Bizaoui said: “This is a key milestone for Cheshire and Merseyside PSN, extending its reach to include a major client in the police sector.
“Closer collaboration in the public sector is essential for police forces, as they look to create efficiencies by working with third parties across all sectors, from fire and rescue services to councils and the health service.”
Cheshire Constabulary announced plans to set up a communications technology framework worth approximately £140 million earlier this week.
The successful bidder for the contract will be responsible for providing a ‘Force Communications Solution’ for up to 10 years from the start of the agreement in 2015.
Updata is a firm providing internet and broadband services to mainly public sector customers based in Reigate. It was acquired by Capita in April 2014 for £80 million and will eventually become part of Capita’s IT Services Division.