“Innovation is not easy, especially within a complex organization like the police. RevelX has solved a key puzzle to take an important step forward. They do this with a critical perspective and a wealth of experience and best practices that they’ve acquired from similar projects.”

John Stultiens

Head of Digital Transformation and Innovation, Limburg Unit

The Limburg Police Unit is responsible for maintaining law and order, preventing crime, and ensuring public safety in the Limburg region of the Netherlands. It is part of the national police structure in the Netherlands, operating under the National Police (Nationale Politie). The Limburg Police Unit encompasses several districts within the Limburg province and is tasked with a range of duties, including general policing, criminal investigations, traffic enforcement, community engagement, and public order maintenance.

The unit works closely with local communities, other law enforcement agencies, and emergency services to ensure a coordinated and effective approach to safety and order in the region.

Many fast-moving developments and (technological) trends have a direct impact on society, and thus also on the core tasks of the police. To ensure the police organization can continue to operate optimally now and, in the future, a policy has been developed, known as the strategic compass. Innovation plays a significant role in realizing the compass and thereby achieving the goals of the Police Organization.

Within the police organization, both at the national and regional levels, there are many active innovation initiatives. These have led to successes and valuable experiences.

However, there are some challenges with recent activities. For example, the regional innovation lab suffers from an image problem. It is seen as more national than regional, costs a lot of money, and produces (too) few tangible results. Many innovations are initiated and developed in “splendid isolation”, lacking adequate input from the organization—the demand side. This leads to limited buy-in, a lack of ownership, and subsequently a limited number of successful implementations. There is also a disconnect with the operational organization. The distance between the innovation lab and the work floor is perceived to be relatively large.

To address these challenges, RevelX, in collaboration with the Police Organization innovation chair, explored how a new innovation process could be developed. One that is closely connected to all levels of operations. The aim is to create broad support and engagement throughout the organization. The innovation process must be well-anchored, with clear ownership, defined responsibilities, effective governance, and a strong coordination role for the portfolio manager.

Based on the RevelX Innovation program, we deployed the following 3 steps:

  • The first step was an extensive interview round (about 30 interviews) with key stakeholders. This step was crucial to assess the current situation, but more importantly to secure a broad support base within the organization
  • In addition, during several sprints, a new process was designed in collaboration with a core team and developed into an innovation operating model
  • The final result is a blueprint for how innovation should be organized and implemented within the police organization.

During the design process, the ‘RevelX Target Innovation Operating Model’ was used, a dedicated approach to innovation process design, developed by RevelX to build the innovation business model.

RevelX’ approach has concretely resulted in a renewed approach to the innovation process. This approach has been translated into a police innovation playbook, which is crucial for further implementation of the process. Both on a regional as a national level. The process has received broad support within the organization, with improvements implemented and potential pitfalls addressed.

Within the larger scope of the organization, this is a critical step toward further development of a national approach to innovation within the Police force.