How we’re different than the competition

As an HR, IT, or City Manager, you need policy management software that meets the unique needs of your municipality.

July 14, 2021

Be confident you’re purchasing the right software

As an HR, IT, or City Manager, you need policy management software that meets the unique needs of your municipality. But it can be difficult to assess the pros, cons, and differences between solutions, especially if you’re new to the software. With the right vendor who understands your departmental and interdepartmental needs, you can be confident in solution efficacy and return on investment.

PowerDMS has 3,500+ customers in the public safety sector, including law enforcement agencies, local governments, fire departments, parks and recreation, corrections, and more. Our policy management platform was designed for your needs: it increases employee accountability, protects your crucial information against cyberattacks, and modernizes your policy manual and processes (that includes going paperless).

Unlike many of our competitors, we go beyond providing software. We equip you with the knowledge, training, and support needed to succeed. View this map to see other municipalities and public sector organizations using PowerDMS.

As you begin researching policy management software, you will discover that leading solutions have many of the same features. Here are common features and functionality you can expect from PowerDMS and other providers: 

  • Central repository
  • Access control
  • Electronic signature capture
  • Workflows
  • Version control
  • Reporting
  • Mobile
  • Integrations (Microsoft Office, OneDrive, Google Drive)

So what makes PowerDMS different from the competition? To help you evaluate us against other solutions, we’ve highlighted our key differentiators below.

What makes PowerDMS different?

It’s a platform, not just another piece of software

In your day-to-day work, policies, training, and accreditation don’t operate in silos. They connect and inform one another. Here are some examples:

  • Your employees need testing to verify they understood certain policies
  • Your employees need to be trained on new or updated procedures
  • You need to share a policy with the public, or update a policy that has been shared
  • You’d like to get employee feedback on an updated policy or procedure
  • Your police department’s policies (and other files) need to be measured against accreditation standards to prove compliance

Each of these examples include some combination of policies, training, and accreditation. And your policy management solution should be built for these realities. It should simplify processes and make your life easier.

With the PowerDMS platform, you get an ecosystem where your policy, training, and accreditation solutions connect and inform one another. In other words, they are seamlessly integrated to save you time and money on typical daily and recurring tasks. 

For example, our platform gives you control over a single, living version of every document. So when you update one document, every instance of it in your training, public-facing documents, and accreditation systems is updated as well.

Don’t need every solution (i.e. training or accreditation)? No problem. Simply pay for the plan you need.

Faster and easier to create and update policies

When moving from paper-based methods to PowerDMS, our customers have reduced the time it takes to update and distribute a policy to their staff by 75%. Instead of it taking four weeks to change and distribute a policy, on average, they are completing the work in a week or less. 

If your police department needs help with policies, they can subscribe to policy content from CALEA and customize it to meet their needs. Once enrolled in CALEA's accreditation program, they can subscribe to sample policies from other accredited agencies and customize those to meet their needs as well.

The simplest way to prepare for an assessment

We realize one of your departments may already be accredited or in the process of seeking accreditation. This is particularly true of police departments, which are being incentivized now more than ever to pursue accreditation. Our accreditation solution comes pre-loaded with state, national, and international standards manuals for law enforcement, corrections, parks and recreation, fire, EMS, and more. These include CALEA, IACLEA, PREA, ACA, NCCHC, CAPRA, CPSE, and various ISO standards. 

With our platform, municipal departments can map their policies to these standards and reduce assessment preparation time by up to 50% (on average). They can highlight documents to prove compliance to specific requirements, give assessors access to documents before an onsite, and conduct mock assessments remotely. 

The only solution with a Public-Facing Documents tool

Start improving community relations by sharing your policies and procedures with the public. Your municipality may have something posted on the city website, but is it easily available and searchable by the average citizen? By increasing transparency, you also increase trust.

PowerDMS is the only policy management solution that lets you share policies, forms, and other documents with the public. The best part is how easy it is. With our Public-Facing Documents tool, you can select and publish documents with the click of a button. Each document gets a custom URL which can be shared with the public, or you can embed the URL on your website so the community always has access. When you make a change to the document in PowerDMS, the public version is automatically updated, so you won’t need to update two different versions.

An intuitive, easy-to-use interface

The PowerDMS platform was forged in law enforcement in 2001, and continues to be designed for busy public servants like you. When you log in each day, you will see a To Do list and a color-coded dashboard of outstanding items (staff signatures, document workflows, etc). Your staff only sees what they need to and can search for information via folders, keywords, or tags. Acting as your personal assistants, PowerDMS automates critical processes and helps you update and manage policies up to 4x faster, when compared to paper-based systems.

Top-rated customer support

When you choose PowerDMS, you get unlimited, ongoing support from our Customer Success Team. Based in the U.S., they answer all service requests sent via phone, email, or chat, with 90% of customer cases resolved in under one business day. PowerDMS has 4,000+ customers, a 97% customer satisfaction rate, and over 500+ 5-star reviews for customer service on third-party review sites like Capterra, TrustRadius, and G2.

Customer advocacy program

In addition to our ongoing customer support, PowerDMS offers a customer advocacy program called Champions. As a Champion, you can see upcoming features before anyone else, learn from peers and share insider knowledge, engage with beta programs for new features, and earn points for completing challenges, which can be traded in for rewards.

Industry-leading data security

We seek the highest standards in data management and security. PowerDMS is hosted on AWS GovCloud (US) and all data is encrypted. Our platform is load-balanced across three secure, US-based data centers designed to anticipate and tolerate failure while maintaining service levels. We also maintain FBI-CJIS, SOC 2, and HIPAA compliance. 

With all of these measures in place, and with your data securely hosted on external servers, your city is protected against cyberattacks. Learn more about our security measures here.

PowerDMS also lets you control user and group roles/permissions, so staff can only access what you let them. For example, you could create groups for each of your public safety departments, letting them operate with independence while still using a single system government-wide. This lets law enforcement leverage our policy and accreditation solutions while fire uses policy and training, creating flexibility and security at every level.

The benchmark in policy management

PowerDMS has some of the same features as other providers, but thanks to our easy-to-use software we do those same things better. Our platform surpasses the competition by creating a living connection between your policies, training, and accreditation to save you time, money, and headaches. 

For every reason listed above, PowerDMS is used by hundreds of cities, towns, and counties across the United States. We’ve been serving public safety organizations since 2001, and we will continue to do so. 

We understand that pricing is a factor in your purchase decision. And if your department is going to spend its limited budget on technology, then you need to feel confident in your return on investment. Here are some things to consider.

Could other departments benefit from a policy management solution like PowerDMS?

We serve thousands of law enforcement agencies and hundreds of fire, corrections, and parks departments. Or see if one of your public safety departments is already using us today, and you can get access.

With PowerDMS, municipalities get the best of both worlds: a shared platform and department-specific access security. In other words, an HR department can manage, distribute, and track important documents across all departments. And each department can maintain its own system for managing workflows, documents, users, etc., while still accessing municipal-wide content as their security permissions allow.

From a budget perspective, this means the cost of PowerDMS can be split across departments and the only added cost is licenses. If your law enforcement agency is already using PowerDMS, then you only have to pay for the licenses to add users.

Review your department’s current processes

Try to assess how much money you’re losing (or could lose) from every policy gap, inefficient process, and risk. Before implementing PowerDMS, many of our customers had developed and adapted to inefficient workarounds. Not only are they time consuming, they can lead to non-compliance, lawsuits, cyberattacks, etc. that put your department at risk

A purchase decision isn’t just about how much a solution costs. It’s about how much time and money a solution can save you in the long run.

The value exceeds the cost

Time and time again, the value that PowerDMS provides to cities, towns, and counties exceeds the cost. We push bi-weekly software updates so our platform is always improving. We boast industry-leading customer support, based in the U.S., and hold ourselves to the highest security standards so you’re protected against cyberattacks. We offer educational tools via PowerDMS University, Entrust (our annual conference for customers), and a Community Success portal with helpful articles.

When you add these value-drivers to your estimated ROI, it becomes clear that PowerDMS is the gold standard in policy management for government agencies. But don’t just take our word for it – it’s been proven by the experiences of 3,500+ public safety customers:

  • Update policies up to 4x faster
  • Save thousands of dollars in overtime costs by hosting training online
  • Reduce accreditation prep time by up to 50%
  • Protect your agency from costly wrongful termination lawsuits
  • Decrease printing and paper costs by up to $10,000, on average
  • Prepare for onsite assessments in less than 6 months

“Every department we’ve trained on PowerDMS has gotten excited about it. They come in not really knowing what it can do, but within the hour they’re falling over themselves, overjoyed with everything PowerDMS can help them with.”

- David Holland, Louisville Metro Government


“Instead of just getting the bare minimum of training – 24 hours a year – we take the money we save [through PowerDMS] and offer additional training we wouldn’t have been able to offer. Last year, our officers were able to do 100 hours of training."

- Joe Upton, Lacey Police Department 

Next steps

Reserve your free demo today to see firsthand how PowerDMS can help your department. After completing the quick form, one of our team members will be in touch. We look forward to talking with you.

Schedule Demo

Otherwise, check out our next article in this series, Top problems we solve for municipalities, to learn more about how PowerDMS is specialized for your needs and goals.

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