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File #: 42043    Version: 1 Name: MPD contract with Winscribe (sole source)
Type: Resolution Status: Passed
File created: 3/4/2016 In control: BOARD OF ESTIMATES (ended 4/2017)
On agenda: 3/15/2016 Final action: 3/29/2016
Enactment date: 4/4/2016 Enactment #: RES-16-00234
Title: Authorizing a contract with Winscribe USA Inc. and Winscribe Inc. Limited for electronic police report dictation software, equipment and support
Sponsors: Paul R. Soglin
Date Ver.Action ByActionResultAction DetailsMeeting DetailsWatch
3/29/20161 COMMON COUNCIL AdoptPass Action details Meeting details Not available
3/21/20161 BOARD OF ESTIMATES (ended 4/2017) RECOMMEND TO COUNCIL TO ADOPT - REPORT OF OFFICERPass Action details Meeting details Not available
3/15/20161 COMMON COUNCIL ReferPass Action details Meeting details Not available
3/4/20161 Police Department RECOMMEND TO COUNCIL TO ADOPT UNDER SUSPENSION OF RULES 2.04, 2.05, 2.24, & 2.25 - REPORT OF OFFICER  Action details Meeting details Not available


Fiscal Note

Funds are available in the Police Department Capital Budget, Records Management System, project #10728.



Authorizing a contract with Winscribe USA Inc. and Winscribe Inc. Limited for electronic police report dictation software, equipment and support





Since 1999, the City of Madison Police Department has utilized an electronic dictation and transcription system from Dictaphone/Nuance. The number of police reports that are dictated and transcribed through this system each year has continued to reflect an upward trend, exceeding 28,000 reports in 2015.


The increasing operational needs of the department as well as advancements in technology have highlighted the growing inefficiencies of the current Dictaphone system. These issues center upon deficiencies within its core operational elements: report processing/management, reporting (and lack of dashboard tools), hand held recording equipment options, and system administration. This is further compounded by the inability to improve and enhance the current system due to the end of service life for server and system hardware, no inclusive application upgrades/maintenance, and limited support from the vendor.


In the process of finding a replacement solution that would meet the needs of the Madison Police Department, the Winscribe dictation system was recommended and then researched by MPD supervisory and technology staff. References for this system were obtained through a site visit to the City of Racine Police Department, as well as via a phone conference with the City of Lincoln Police Department in Nebraska. Both departments reported to be very pleased with Winscribe due to its ease in use, options, maintenance, technological advances, as well as the high level of customer support they receive, all of which are lacking with the current system.


WHEREAS, the current dictation system’s server and related hardware is no longer under warranty, risking the ability for the processing of reports and therefore placing officer reports and evidentiary audio files (interviews) in jeopardy; and


WHEREAS, the hand held recording equipment associated with the current system is no longer manufactured and the current inventory within the City of Madison Police Department is depleted. This leaves no options for supporting the current devices nor for the expansion of mobile dictation as well as limits the abilities for offsite interviews. With the advancement of technology, so does the need for Madison Police Officers and Detectives to efficiently document incident reports and recording of interviews in the field; and


WHEREAS, Winscribe provides for multiple mobile dictation options as an application that can be utilized on desktop computers, laptops, a variety of third party hand held recorders, and Smartphones; and


WHEREAS, the City of Madison Police Department’s current police report dictation system is aged, inefficient, and recently experiencing instability issues where police reports can be interrupted or may be lost. Timeliness is a factor as this system is pivotal in the 24/7 reporting and interviewing process of City of Madison Police Department. Due to the operational demands of the department, and need to fortify this critical system, the Madison Police Department is seeking the approval for the sole source purchase of the Winscribe dictation system; and


WHEREAS, Winscribe has proposed a contract that includes software, installation, project management, and training, for the price of $34,100 and recurring annual maintenance fee of $21,600; and


WHEREAS, MGO 4.26 requires the Common Council to approve service contracts exceeding $25,000 if the contractor was not selected through a full competitive selection process and the police department desires to use Winscribe for this technology for the reasons explained above; and


WHEREAS, MGO 4.26 also requires a contract for more than three years to be authorized by the Common Council; and this contract has the potential to be renewed on an annual basis for as long as the Police Department wishes to continue using this vendor for these services; and


WHEREAS, funding for this purchase has already been approved under current capital project #10728 for Records Management Systems;


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Mayor and City Clerk are authorized to sign contract document(s) as needed with Winscribe USA Inc. and/or Winscribe Inc. Limited for the purposes and at the price described above, and the Council further authorizes annual renewal of the subscription based license for the useful life of the software as long as funding is available in the approved budget.