Effortlessly Improving Your City’s Service Delivery with SeeClickFix

December 11, 2014 5:25 am PDT | Data Apps & Visualization, Open Data
Photo: SeeClickFix

Not so long ago, in a city much like your own, Joe, a concerned citizen sent letters to his local alderman get the pothole in front of his house fixed. Now it so happened that, thanks to major storms in the area, there was a six week backlog on pothole repairs. But Joe Citizen was never informed about the delay. He just banged his tire in the pothole everyday getting more and more frustrated with the city’s lack of response.

In defense of the Your Town, the pothole wasn’t going unpatched because of the backlog. The alderman’s office had sent the repair request in to Public Works, although it was the Department of Transportation that fixed potholes. So Joe’s letter just stayed in municipal limbo. And the pothole went unfixed.

But, there is a happy ending to Joe’s story. Because his town got the SeeClickFix app (available in the Socrata Marketplace.)

SeeClickFix became Your Town’s public channel to report non-emergency issues. The app walked Joe through the process of reporting his pothole and then seamlessly integrated that information into the city’s work flow. Because of the pothole filling backlog, Transportation had set up an alert, which automatically emailed Joe about the delay in getting to his repair. The app also told him when the city would be out within a few days to patch the hole. When it was fixed, Transportation sent Joe a photo of the fresh patch. And Joe used the SeeClickFix app to tweet Your Town a thank you.

Currently deployed in over 200 [real] cities around the world, SeeClickFix is transforming resident-government communications and improving municipal efficiency.

“Deployment couldn’t be quicker or easier,” says Ryan Mannion Government Partnerships Manager at SeeClickFix. “After we kick-off with a city, it only takes about ten weeks to launch the app, if they are using our stand alone version.”

The stand alone version includes a suite of service request management tools which facilitate internal assignments, as well as metrics tracking. SeeClickFix is not just the intake point, it also allows municipal staff to manage updates, trends, and data.

For cities with existing asset management systems, such as Citywork, SeeClickFix will integrate with that software and the app becomes middleware. (Integrating with asset management software does take longer than ten weeks, Mannion warns.) With integration or as a stand alone app, the citizen-facing side offers the same user-friendly interface.

“SeeClickFix is a lightweight add on for any city concerned about service requests,” Mannion told Socrata during a phone interview.

It’s also a way to save city employees time, not just by streamlining the communication process (as in Joe’s case), but also by mapping the precise location of service requests, meaning investigative teams do not need to be sent into the field to verify complaints.

Mannion points to Albuquerque as a case in point. The New Mexican city reported that after receiving just 6,000 service requests (which took only four months time) SeeClickFix paid for itself. That’s partially owing to the price tag. Albuquerque also reported the app cost about 10% of similar systems deployed by other jurisdictions.

“We are making it easy for cities to not just analyze data and fix problems, but actually push images and videos back to residents,” Mannion says. “Because citizen communications really matter.”

Joe agrees. 

***

This post is part of a series about apps available through the Socrata Marketplace

 


Previous Article
Open Data
Civic Awesome: Open Data In The News For December 12, 2014

December 12, 2014

Next Article
Open Data
How Data Standards Are Poised To Transform Government

December 9, 2014