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311/CRM Roundtables - Archives

Sponsored by the 311/CRM Project Coordinating Group, the 311/CRM Roundtables are informal discussions among local government practitioners on issues related to 311/CRM operations. To listen to a recording of past sessions, click on the title of the session below.  For titles with no links, please contact Cory Fleming, project director, at or 207-854-1083 to have a copy of the recording e-mailed to you.

Integrating GIS into 311/CRM Data Analysis

311/CRM systems generate a wealth of new data—from what services constituents contact the community about most frequently to how quickly those service requests are answered. All of those requests have a geographical element to them. When integrated with a geographical information system (GIS), a community can start to identify potential "hot spots" and determine how to better leverage existing resources for a troubled neighborhood. During this webinar, representatives from the City of Corpus Christi, Texas, will share how they are using CRM data for this purpose and discuss their use of a new smartphone application, CitySourced, to capture GIS coordinates when citizens report problems.

Speakers: Chuck Cmeyla, Esri Public Works Industry; Michael Armstrong, City of Corpus Christi, TX; and Kurt Daradics, CitySourced

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: December 9, 2010

The Three C’s: Communication, Coordination, & Collaboration between Police and 311

 311 call centers are an important resource for managing call volume and responding to the public's need for information during natural disasters and other crises. Having 311 agents available to handle non-emergency calls allow police officers to concentrate their efforts on responding to life-threatening situations. In the City of Rochester, New York, the Police Department and 311 Call Center actively work together to not only respond to the public during a crisis, but also to prevent potential problems. Please join this roundtable to learn about the link between 311 and 911 and learn how the City of Rochester addresses the three C's.

Speakers: Traci Morrison, Winbourne & Costas, Inc.; Lieutenant Michael Lesniak, Rochester Police Department, Technical Services Section; and Arleen Hyland, 311 Call Center, City of Rochester, NY

 Moderator: Debra Cohen, U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing (COPS)

 Date: November 16, 2010

A Joint 311 Synergy Group Webinar and 311/CRM Roundtable: Developing a Work from Home Program for Your Contact Center Rep

Minneapolis 311 rolled out its "311 Virtual Agent" program in August 2010. Learn how their team answered these questions: what did it take to make it happen, what did Minneapolis learn along the way, what are the results, and would Minneapolis do it again?

Speaker: Don Stickney, Director, Minneapolis 311

Host: Eva Liggins, President, 311 Synergy Group and Assistant Director, Dallas 311

Date: October 28, 2010

211/311: Is There a Case for Consolidation and Collaboration?

In mid-2010, ICMA and The Ochs Center for Metropolitan Studies released a new white paper that looks at whether 211 systems (social services) and 311 systems (local government services) might be able to collaborate or perhaps even consolidate their core functions. During this webinar, the paper's author, David Eichenthal, will discuss findings from his research and lead a discussion on what area as might best lend themselves to a joint effort.

Speaker: David Eichenthal, The Ochs Center for Metropolitan Studies

Host:  Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: October 12, 2010

Building a Business Case for 311/CRM during an Economic Crisis

The City of Philadelphia didn’t even have its new Philly311 system up and running before it lost roughly $3 million to budget cuts in 2008. Yet the city managed to launch the new service before the end of that year and handled about 1.1 million calls in 2009. And with customer satisfaction ratings around 89%, the city has good cause to celebrate its decision to move forward with the service.  Learn more about how the city went about accomplishing this goal under challenging economic circumstances.

Speaker: Patrick Morgan, City of Philadelphia, PA

Host:  Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: March 23, 2010


Ask the Experts

We’re going to try something a little different with this 311/CRM Roundtable. Although the topic is 311/CRM, there are no set focus areas for discussion. The speakers will be available to respond to a broad range of contact center questions.

Speakers: Spencer Stern, Government Finance Officers Association and Kristin M. Howlett, CH2M HILL

Host: Susan Cable, PTI

Date: March 3, 2010


PTI's Citizen-Engaged Community Designation: Promoting Excellence in Government

Local governments are invited to apply for designation by PTI as a Citizen-Engaged Community for achieving high standards in the use of technology to promote citizen participation, seamless service delivery and democratic accountability. Governments that receive designation must complete an application process that addresses citizen participation processes, integrated communication channels, integrated technologies, and performance reporting. This webinar will detail the application process (and benefits!) of being designated a Citizen-Engaged Community.

Speaker: Susan Cable, Project Manager, Public Technology Institute 

Host: Alan Shark,PTI

Date: December 10, 2009

The Evolution of One City's Online Request System

Customer service is a core value for the city of Saco, Maine. As part of their commitment to providing excellent customer service, local government leaders decided they want their citizens "online, not in line." The ensuing evolution of the Saco information center and online request system shows how communities of under 50,000 population can apply the principles of a centralized customer service system to improve customer service, performance measurement, and budgeting.

Speakers: Richard Michaud and Stephanie Weaver, City of Saco, ME

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: December 1, 2009

Choosing the Right Technology, Part 2: What to Look for in Software Programs

There are hundreds of constituent relationship management (CRM) software programs on the market today. Some programs come with multiple applications such as links to geographical information systems (GIS), enterprise resource programs (ERP), and others.  Other programs are much more basic. This discussion will center on how to do the background research to determine which CRM is right for your community and what questions you need to ask when doing your research. 

Moderator: Rose Minton, 311 Synergy Group Staff Support and Independent Selection Consultant

Host:  Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: November 4, 2009

Choosing the Right Technology, Part 1:  What Systems Do You Need to Consider  

Find out what types of technology, as well as implementation strategies, are needed to launch a local government contact center.  Join us for an overview of the hardware, software, and integration components that were successfully deployed in the Winston-Salem "City Link" contact center. 

Speaker: Dennis Newman, City of Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Host: Susan Cable, PTI

Date: August 18, 2009

311 and Citizen Engagement Strategies

311 is an easy way for citizens to connect with their local government, but 311 can also be an important tool for local governments to engage their citizens.  Learn about how two communities—Kansas City, Missouri and Chattanooga, Tennessee—have done just that

Speaker: Earnest Rouse, Assistant to the City Manager, Kansas City 311 Action Center

Host: David Eichenthal, The Ochs Center for Metropolitan Studies

Date: July 22, 2009

The Game Plan: Building an Inter-Department Team for 311

A 311/CRM system can only be as good as the services provided by local government partner departments. This discussion will focus on how the Denver 311 Customer Care Operation has reached out to work with partner departments and helped them see the benefits of 311.

Speaker: Mike Major, Director, 311 Operations, City and County of Denver, CO

Host: Michele Collins, Rutgers - PPMRN

Date: June 23, 2009

Staff Training

Discussion will center on how to keep agents current on local government developments

Speaker: Kristin M. Howlett, CH2MHill

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: June 10, 2009

The Devil Is In the Detail: Integrating Existing Work Order Systems

Service departments often have existing work order systems.  When a new CRM or call center arrives on the scene integrating it with those work order systems is key to the success of the new program.  This discussion will focus on how the City of Corpus Christi, Texas, tackled this issue.

Speaker: Annie Leal, City of Corpus Christi, TX

Host: Susan Cable, PTI

Date: May  27, 2009

Service Level Agreements and Data Reports

Service level agreements (SLAs) provide 311/CRM systems with an estimate of how long it will take to fulfill a service request. Tracking the percentage of service requests completed in the SLA timeframe provides one important performance measurement for many communities. Other 311/CRM data can help a community think strategically about how to improve performance. During this discussion, we’ll learn how the city of Hampton, Virginia, established SLAs and what type of data reports they use.

Speaker: Elizabeth Nisley, Hampton 311 Customer Call Center 

Host: Grant Sparks, ICMA

Date: May  14, 2009

311 on a Budget and Short Timeframe: It Can Be Done

The cost factor is one challenge that communities frequently cite as a deterrent to implementing 311/CRM service. But when leaders in the City of Philadelphia took on the challenge, they put together a system in 9 months that was very cost affordable. This discussion centers on how they did it.

Speakers: Patrick Morgan, and Jeff Friedman, City of Philadelphia, PA

Host: David Eichenthal, The Ochs Center for Metropolitan Studies

Date: April 27, 2009

Regional 311: An Option for Rural Communities?

Many large cities in the U.S. have 311 service, but it’s rare for smaller communities. This discussion centers on the possibility of using a shared services model to create a regional 311 service.

Speakers: Terri Morrin, 311 Network and Greg Whitnell, ActiveGovernment

Host: Michele Collins, Rutgers - PPMRN

Date: April 7, 2009

Knowledgebase Creation and Management

Developing a robust knowledgebase in central to the daily operations of a CRM system. This discussion will focus on how the City of Lynwood, California, went about building their knowledgebase as well as demonstrate some new tools for capturing information and reaching out to the community.

Speakers: Deborah Jackson, City of Lynwood, CA and Gabriela Dow, GovPartner

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: March 19, 2009

Building a Business Case for 311/CRM

When budgets are tight and every expense is being scrutinized, how do you justify implementing a 311 or CRM system. During this discussion, we’ll explore conducting a cost-benefit analysis and calculating return on investment why just an investment may be exactly what’s needed in lean times.

Speakers: Shayne Kavanagh and Spencer Stern, Government Finance Officers Association

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: March 3, 2009

Technology Issues: Integrate Your Current Technology with New 311/CRM Technology or Get All-New Technology Now? 

Telephony systems, knowledgebase and tracking software, work order systems, GIS technology—there are a whole host of technology issues to consider in developing a 311/CRM.  This discussion highlights some of the technology challenges to consider.

Speaker: Theresa Richardson, Avaya North American Practice Leader for Local Government

Host: Susan Cable, PTI

Date: February 23,  2009

The 311 Planning Process and Implementation Strategies

311 and CRM systems should be designed with the needs of the community in mind. During this discussion, participants will explore steps in the planning and implementation processes. 

Speaker: JudithAnn Cascio, EMA, Inc

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: February 5, 2009

Needs Assessment: Is Your Community Ready for 311?

How can a local government determine whether 311/CRM service might improve its customer service and achieve better service delivery? This discussion will focus on factors local governments should consider in conducting a 311/CRM needs assessment.

Speaker: Spencer Stern, Government Finance Officers Association

Host: Cory Fleming, ICMA

Date: January 22, 2009