Cupertino Creates Transparency Through Data With Rock Solid
As a city driven by data, Cupertino, California worked with Rock Solid to transform their 311 system into a customer-focused insights powerhouse. The highly integrated service request management platform and citizen portal have helped the city create transparent and effective service delivery that residents, staff, and city leaders take pride in.Get the PDF
The City of Cupertino was looking for a way to be more transparent with its residents and staff within its 311 operations as part of a city-wide focus on data. From PCI to Tree Services, says Andy Badal, Asset Management Technician at the City of Cupertino, “we have dashboards for everything.”
But 311 services could not provide the same level of transparency. In the prior system, resident visibility into the status of projects was limited, and customer service suffered. This system did not integrate with Cityworks, which was a huge execution and visibility pain point. Service requests could not be tracked in aggregate, being sent directly to personal email inboxes when tasks came in, which was stressful for staff. Department leaders and staff were not able to track requests, resolution times, and team assignments in aggregate.
Cupertino needed a data-focused solution that would connect seamlessly with their Cityworks asset management system while also improving visibility and customer service for residents.
Having the public visibility that we were lacking in our previous system has been really helpful. Citizens can see that requests are being handled through the city, being completed, and that the work's actually being done. That's really important.
To identify the right solution, Cupertino involved members of its Public Works, Parks and Recreation, Code Enforcement, and other departments in the buying decision. “We went through all the demos with everyone involved. We met with each group and ended up putting together a comparison document with all the wishlist items that our staff wanted. It eventually became a no-brainer to pick Rock Solid,” said Teri.
Today, Cupertino partners with Rock Solid to provide a multi-platform 311 citizen request solution for residents and staff. Rock Solid’s OneView CRM, OneLink mobile app, and APIs integrate directly with Cityworks. This two-way transfer of information happens in real time and brings all service requests into the city’s existing workflow.
The Cupertino Connect app is free to download on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Since launching in 2017, the easy-to-use app lets residents submit service requests or connect with city resources via smartphone or web widget.
APIs also allow the Cupertino Connect system to function within other city applications, including Cupertino’s tree inventory website. Cupertino Connect allows residents to submit 311 requests, see existing requests in their area, track progress and receive communication from city staff surrounding their requests, and more.
To contribute to Cupertino’s data-focused culture, Rock Solid’s integrations and APIs allow important 311 engagement data to flow out of the CRM and into data visualization applications like Microsoft Power BI. These dashboards share 311 data with residents on a publicly available webpage to promote transparency. Department leaders and staff use an internal 311 dashboard to track, measure, and improve service delivery. According to Andy, “Rock Solid definitely gives us a lot of data to leverage.”
In this data-driven city, Rock Solid adds visibility and efficiency to 311 and service requests. The platform has improved service delivery and exceeded the expectations of staff, city leaders, and residents.
Accelerated Request Resolution Times
Cupertino's Rock Solid platform quickly directs the right request type to the right staff member. With this routing, says Teri, “we can expedite requests and get them to the right person as soon as possible so that we can get it resolved as soon as possible. That’s been very effective within the system.”
More data, more improvement
Teri says, “Now, we don't have to [pull data for supervisors] anymore. [Supervisors] can quickly go to their dashboard and pull those numbers... Now that they have this data at their fingertips, they can ask, ‘How can I bring these numbers up? Can I improve these different areas?’ Giving that picture really helps them formulate proactive maintenance.”
Submitting service requests via Cupertino Connect is easy for any resident. “Our mayor and city manager push all the time how easy it is to use the app. It’s been a huge switch from our old system,” says Teri.
Simplified work for staff
The Rock Solid platform has been well-received by Cupertino’s field teams. It integrates well with Cityworks, meaning staff can handle work orders without jumping across platforms. “The feedback we're getting from staff is all positive. 311 requests are definitely not painful to handle anymore, which is really nice,” says Teri.
Dashboards residents love
Since its launch in March 2020, Cupertino’s 311 Request Overview dashboard has made request data available to the public directly from the city’s website. The response has been positive, claims Teri. “The public really seems to love having that dashboard on the site. We’ve had some good feedback on that.”
Useful Dashboards for Staff
An additional 311 Request Overview dashboard exists for department leaders. The GIS Division Manager continues, “Our Public Works department uses [the dashboard] in a weekly meeting to understand why certain requests haven’t been closed yet. From there, they can troubleshoot and tackle those issues that come up. It gives them a quick picture of what's going on. That’s powerful.”
Fewer citizen complaints
Citizens who submit requests via Cupertino Connect receive updates as their requests are processed and completed. “Communication back and forth is so much better now. Containing all requests within the system is a huge benefit that everyone appreciates,” according to Teri. Andy adds, “I'm always seeing requests come back with comments from residents after we respond.”
Visible improvements to 311 service delivery
“The interaction that we’re able to give to the community, whether that be from Cityworks or 311… just to be able to do that from Cityworks makes it easy for our team to provide customer service to residents who expect that from us. That’s definitely a benefit.”
Because [our staff] provide such a high level of work, our residents have come to expect that of our employees. To be able to have dashboards for residents that show the number of work orders in 311 that we're actually handling and maintaining is just a great metric to be able to portray a message of strong customer service.
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