Customer Spotlight:
City of Santa Rosa, CA

Selectron’s self-service platform provides convenient automated solutions for citizens to access their accounts and complete transactions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, our solutions also go well beyond, helping empower communities in times of tremendous need. This was evidenced by Santa Rosa, CA, where our SelecTXT permitting solution helped the city to rebuild itself after devastating wildfires in 2017.

Problem
Selectron has worked with the City of Santa Rosa for over 15 years, deploying and maintaining a self-service Interactive Voice Response (IVR) solution integrated to the city’s permitting system. But in 2017, widespread wildfires damaged or destroyed many of the city’s homes, businesses, and infrastructure. In addition to the obvious human cost associated with these disasters, this presented a real challenge for the city’s Planning and Economic Development Department, as the resulting construction caused a large influx of inspection requests.

In order to support the community in its efforts to rebuild, the Building Division needed an additional inspection scheduling option to supplement the existing IVR and web channels.  

Solution
Selectron’s SelecTXT solution for permitting proved the optimal addition to their existing automated inspection scheduling solutions. SelecTXT brings inspection scheduling directly to citizens’ fingertips by:

  • Allowing users to schedule inspections with a simple sequence of text messages
  • Guiding the user through the process by prompting them to enter their permit number, inspection type and any other necessary details
  • Confirming the inspection for the user and updating the inspection database automatically without staff involvement
  • Notifying users via text with their results as soon as the inspection is complete

Selectron integrated SelecTXT to the city’s existing inspection database and inspection code format, ensuring the solution could be implemented quickly and fit smoothly with the existing permitting infrastructure.

Results
Along with the city’s IVR and web solutions, SelecTXT helped the department efficiently manage the incoming inspection requests, while reducing the work of over-burdened staff. Under normal circumstances, the city conducts around 120 inspections per day between the Planning and Economic Development and Fire Departments. In the wake of the 2017 wildfire, the daily inspection load more than doubled to over 250 inspections or more. The IVR and SelecTXT tools were instrumental in helping the department keep up, allowing users to schedule these inspections and update inspection records themselves, ensuring staff could deliver for their citizens when it was needed most.

In their own words
IT Application Services Manager Brian Tickner has worked extensively with Selectron in his fourteen years with the City, and has observed first-hand the importance of these tools:

“Customers were able to help themselves, freeing up staff from fielding twice as many phone calls, and it’s tightly integrated with the Accela permitting and inspection system, so everything is automatically logged with each permit. No additional work required.”

 He’s also touted our support capabilities, saying

“[Selectron is] one of our strongest support partners in terms of third-party vendors. The help desk is among the fastest to respond, investigates things thoroughly and gets back to us quickly. It’s also one of our only vendors that does proactive maintenance, making sure platforms are updated and everything runs smoothly.”

Click to learn more about SelecTXT

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