Activities and incidents track single events (one-to-one), while investigations and cases track multiple events (one-to-many). The following will explain each of these report types in further detail.
Activities are typically routine duties where no serious event, or incident, has occurred, though what exactly makes an event an "activity" vs. an "incident" is up to the individual organization. If your organization uses Dispatch or DispatchLog, all dispatches are recorded as activities, although activities can also be manually created in Perspective.
Activities track who, what, where, and when, but tend to be more resource-centric than incidents, and usually include tracking of response times, officer logs, and total time spent, among other details. Activities, in general, carry far less detail than what would be in a full incident or investigation report and are the first stage report of an event.
Activities can be escalated to incidents, and incidents should be linked to any associated activities.
Incidents track more extensive data than activities, including who, what, when, where, why, how, and how much.
In Perspective, the following information is recorded on individual incident forms:
- Details (Reported Date, Occurred Date, Classification, Site/Location, etc.);
- Involvements (Persons, Organizations, Vehicles, and Items);
- Attachments; and
Perspective tracks activity details within incident reports, and unlike activity reports on their own, incident reports can include investigation details.
In Perspective, incidents can be escalated into investigations to collect additional information. Where the initial incident report tells the story of an event, the ensuing investigation aims to determine who was responsible and why it happened.
Investigative data may include:
- Investigation Start and Closed Dates (may differ from those denoting the incident's duration);
- Assigned Investigators;
- Investigation Metrics (time and dollars spent);
- Investigation Summaries and Interviews (narratives that do not belong in the general Incident Report);
- Investigation Logs (task and expense tracking); and
- Investigation Evidence/Property Records (including chain of custody).
In Perspective ICM and EIM, investigative data is collected under a separate Investigation tab within each incident record, differentiating the standard incident report from an investigation report. For added data segregation, you may also specify which users are allowed access to the Investigation tab.
Investigations can also be used to link similar incidents together to observe patterns and links between incidents. This evolves into cases when multiple investigations need to be linked.
Because case management involves overseeing multiple investigations at once, it requires a high degree of project management. Often, a case involves a series of events that are related but not necessarily alike; these events will, nonetheless, be managed and investigated as a single project or case. For example, a case called "Jeff Brown Restraining Order" may be comprised of a series of incidents of varying types, all involving Jeff Brown; all the events are separate incidents with separate investigative details, but they are all managed as a single investigative unit or project.
A Perspective case is a compilation of multiple investigations, their associated incidents, and those incidents' linked activities, if any. When adding a new case, you must give it a name and include relevant details, such as the names of case managers and investigators.