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Interfacing GUARDIAN RFID With Our Jail Management System

Three keys to innovating, integrating, and dominating with GUARDIAN RFID and your enterprise software.

When you manage inmates, you need as much information about them as possible. This data is often stored in your jail management system or third party systems, such as an electronic medical record.

By automatically sharing data from these sources with GUARDIAN RFID, you can more effectively manage, monitor, and track inmates because you know more about these inmates without having to duplicate workflows. At the same time, you can extend new value to your enterprise systems and capture more data than before.

Here are three key considerations to maximizing your success with GUARDIAN RFID by interfacing with your jail, offender, or case management systems and other third party solutions.

1. Standalone vs. integration

Deploying GUARDIAN RFID integrated with your jail management system vs. standalone delivers several benefits:

  • Time savings: Eliminate double-entry by instantly reusing data that already exists, such as booking information, mugshots, keep separates, restrictions, scheduled events, etc.
  • Reduced errors: By relying on a single source of information to manage certain responsibilities, such as cell assignments and booking information, you can reduce errors and miscommunication, and increase workflow efficiency.
  • Improved data collection: Dramatically accelerate your data collection efforts by activating inmates’ RFID wristbands and RFID cards linked to existing booking numbers from your jail management system. This enables you to collect data such as inmates movements, cell checks, and a wide range of activity logging with handheld scanners, such as SPARTAN without having to rely on paper logs or manually keying information into your jail management system.

2. One-Way or Two-Way

Jails often ask whether GUARDIAN RFID data is sent back to your jail management system. The short answer is: yes, it can. GUARDIAN RFID supports two-way interfaces (meaning that data captured by the GUARDIAN RFID platform can be shared with your enterprise software.) GUARDIAN RFID Certified Integration Partners, such as JailTracker, TriTech Software Systems, and Zuercher Technologies, support two-way interfaces with GUARDIAN RFID.

But, do you need a two-way interface?

Most jails may not realize the advantages of a two-way interface, especially facilities with a small average daily population. Medium and large jails will consider deploying two-way interfaces because they’re trying to standardize on a single reporting platform as much as possible. Even then, there are reports unique to GUARDIAN RFID, such as Compliance Monitor-based reports, that jails use frequently to manage cell check and security round performance that deliver usage and analytical data that are not supported within your enterprise software.

Consider allowing experience to dictate whether a two-way interface is necessary and worth the investment. Also, bear in mind that there are additional fees that you may incur by your enterprise software vendor and GUARDIAN RFID to build and deploy a two-way interface. Evaluate how much time staff may save by having a two-way interface, and whether the time savings or labor increase can be justified by the investment in a two-way interface.

If you choose a one-way interface, consider how to effectively divide your inmate management responsibilities between GUARDIAN RFID and your jail management system. For example, you may maintain support for scheduled events within your jail management system, such as court appearances. Then, use GUARDIAN RFID to log when inmates move to court using Mobile Command and the inmates’ RFID wristbands or ID cards since this data collection workflow is faster than it is to log in your jail management system.

3. Cost Considerations

Your public safety software vendor will likely charge a fee to license an existing interface to GUARDIAN RFID or assess a fee to build the interface. Some vendors, such as Tyler Technologies, have an API that allow your IT department to build the interface without vendor involvement, which can save time and money. (GUARDIAN RFID has a number of ways to interface with enterprise systems. Let us collaborate in choosing a path that’s fast, effective, and saves you money.)

What does an interface fee cost?

The price range for a one-way interface from your jail management system to GUARDIAN RFID can vary from $1,000 to over $5,000. If your software vendor is quoting you a price of over $5,000 -- don’t accept. This amount isn’t commensurate with the amount of time and effort to build a one-way interface. After all, the data you want to share with GUARDIAN RFID is your data. Often times, GUARDIAN RFID can assist in building your interface, or coordinate technical discussions with you and your vendor to help build the interface efficiently and affordably.