By using advanced constituent relationship management (CRM) tools, local governments and officials can put the concerns of the people at the forefront of their operations. Being able to keep everything in one place and have a solid understanding of the needs of the community is the first step in scaling.
Utilizing a CRM starts with a couple of necessary steps. The first step is understanding how a CRM can impact your community. By using a CRM alongside 311 governments can handle issues faster and reserve the 911 line for real emergencies. Here are some of the steps government leaders need to take to streamline the entire process.
Have an End Goal
Implementing a proper CRM strategy starts with identifying your goals as a government. What are you looking to achieve? If you feel that there are many duplicate requests, you could use a CRM to clean them up. Many local governments may feel that they don’t have a fast enough response time to claims, having a CRM could organize everything and make sure that each resident gets the attention they need.
Regardless of the goal, having one is the first step towards growing and fostering change.
In reality, not every 311 call or online claim is going to require the same amount of attention. Local governments need a way to organize issues by level of importance. A CRM will allow you to set everything up so you can handle critical issues first.
Open Up Communication
Everyone needs to be on the same page when you are dealing with a significant change in local government. If the entire team does not support the changes, then you will find yourself with bottlenecks and similar issues like what you may experience currently.
It’s difficult to get public employees, city employees, firefighters, police, EMS, and everyone else on the same page, so communication is crucial to your success. If you are piloting a position of leadership, you need to make sure that each person involved understands the importance of using a CRM in your local government.
In addition to getting them on board, training is also critically important; making sure that everyone understands how the process works are necessary to the success of your government.
Keeping open communication with the community is also incredibly important. Having a CRM strategy is useless if no one is using it. Encourage the community to participate and offer videos, flyers, and assorted training materials, so the residents understand how to file an online complaint.
Track and Monitor Everything
The ultimate goal of using a CRM is to track the status of complaints and keep a running record of every issue that comes in. If you are not using that data to your advantage, you are missing out. After a few months or years of collecting this data, you’ll start to see similarities in the problems you run into.
This is when local governments can step up and foster change because everything is in black and white. When you see where most of the residents are dissatisfied, it’s much easier to implement change.
Lastly, understand that change doesn’t occur overnight, and community residents may think it does.
But it doesn’t.
Make the changes slowly and ensure that everyone is on board. Let the community know that you are implementing changes in how you handle issues so they can get excited about having their voice
Utilizing a CRM and 311 in your community is a big change, but it’s something that every local government will have to do eventually. The first step is understanding the differences between the two and why they are necessary. The second step is learning how to implement them. The third step is bringing your community into the digital age.