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Thames Valley and Hampshire police merge IT services

They already share an ICT director

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Two neighbouring police authorities have signed a legal agreement to create a single IT department

Police staff working at both forces will work together in one department managed by Thames Valley police.

The forces said that the collaboration builds on other successful shared services projects in the south east region, and added that it will provide "real opportunities to enhance and improve the services delivered to the public".

Hampshire IT staff became employees of Thames Valley police at the beginning of February, but have not changed their work location. The constabularies said that work will now continue towards one department serving both forces.

Amanda Cooper, director of information science and technology at Thames Valley, said: "The signing of this agreement is the culmination of considerable hard work and commitment by everyone involved in combining the two departments.

"We have built on the success of the first joint ICT project between the two forces – the IT service desk, which went live in May 2009. Joining together our ICT support department and our ICT infrastructure will provide the forces' financial savings and a foundation upon which to build further collaboration."

The constabularies have a history of sharing services. In November 2007 they announced the appointment of a joint ICT director after conducting a study on how they could collaborate more closely.

This article was originally published at Guardian Government Computing.

Guardian Government Computing is a business division of Guardian Professional, and covers the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register, email james.longhurst@guardian.co.uk at Guardian Government Computing.

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