A look ahead into the enforcement industry
In the world of Parking Enforcement, it is inevitable that enforcement officers will be required to carry equipment that allows them to perform their jobs whilst, hopefully, taking efficiency into consideration.
We’ve all encountered those people. In fact, to some extent, I think we’ve all been one of those people, and maybe still are. You know, the ones who don’t want to alter the way things are done.
A day doesn’t go by around here without having to have a conversation with a prospective client regarding the limitation of one of their parking enforcement providers. It usually goes something like this:
Mobile devices are required to function as a mission critical component to city operations; all the while being dropped, rained on, subject to employee loss and theft, and sometimes, ingesting as much coffee as their operators.
For an efficient enforcement program to exist, software and hardware must work harmoniously…
Traffic and parking tickets, love them or hate them, are a way of life. Truly, you’d be hard-pressed to find a person who’s never had one. Yet, as the average person groans in frustration when they see a ticket on their car (or curses out the PEO), they often forget how that $100 fine would affect those who are not as apt to pay.
If there’s one thing that really gets people hot-under-the-collar it’s parking tickets. Parking enforcement gets a bad rap, and, believe it or not, so do the people that work for enforcement software companies, like those of us at UPsafety.
In the short amount of time I’ve worked here, I’ve already had several friends tell me that I’m “the enemy” for the sole reason that I work for a company that sells enforcement software.
We just finished compiling a bid for a mid-sized town in the US, and it was large. Are you ready? Two hundred and sixty pages with six copies required and oh, by the way, is this 2017? Seems to me we just used a tree to convey what we could have done just as effectively electronically. This got me to thinking; how much paper comes out of a tree anyway? (Hint; an “average” pine tree of 1,610 pounds, produces ~80,000 sheets of paper.)
In the more than 41 years I spent in law enforcement, I witnessed countless innovations that vastly improved police practices. When I first put on a uniform in 1972, things were very different; you might even say primitive by today’s standards. Calls for service were recorded in a ledger book. There were no Computer Aided Dispatch Systems in those days, fingerprints were rolled in ink, and traffic tickets were hand-written on paper in ticket books. Yes, that’s right, hand written in ticket books. Can you imagine anything so archaic?
In a fairly short period of time, I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with over a thousand municipal departments about their parking operations from enforcement, permit management, monitoring, timed spaces, meters, kiosks, pay to park and so much more. Always with the intent to provide value and benefit to the prospective departments, I strive to determine where United Public Safety’s solutions would fix a problem. I hear about a lot of parking enforcement problems in a day. This can mean uncovering a few critical facts, or really diving in and understanding current processes and what future objectives may exist within a department.
Being in the parking business always makes me feel a tad out of place at parties. Dinners with friends of friends seem to be perpetually anchored by the age old minutiae of “So, what do you do?” to the hum of the mundane “Oh, I’m a software developer” or “Oh, I’m an accountant”. I always start my introduction a little differently; “Have you gotten a parking ticket in the last year?”
I am the odd man out in these social settings, and, as a shareholder in a forward thinking parking business, things often interest me that make other people cringe…
From time to time United Public Safety will test and review equipment that we feel could be beneficial for use by Parking Enforcement Officers in the field. The hope is that the equipment we test and review will be rugged, improve efficiency and bring value to a department.
Recently, United Public Safety purchased a newly introduced product named the Nubrella. Join me while I test and review this product to determine if the Nubrella is a product that we would feel comfortable marketing to our clients.
I learned two key items from my trip to IPI in NOLA.
There are a few options available in today’s market for mobile enforcement devices. It comes down to three types:
QUALITY OF LIFE; what do these three words mean to you? For most of us, the answer is pretty clear. Are my basic needs met? Am I feeling physically well? Am I happy? For municipalities, however, there are more questions embedded in Quality of Life than answers.