The City of Edina, Minnesota, sought a robust and interactive platform for its 47,941 residents to report community issues directly to city staff and to use as an additional communications platform. On the backend, the City needed a way for staff to be notified of incoming requests quickly and automatically, and include a direct line of two-way communication between staff and residents.
The City partnered with PublicStuff to launch a mobile app—Edina To Go—to increase resident access to the City. One of the key features of this digital platform is the mobile/web portal through which residents can connect with the City on their computers, mobile phones, and tablets to submit, comment on, and support requests. The City uses customizable widgets to deliver other important information, like city code, election information, neighborhood parks, recycling schedules, and street construction projects, among others.
In developing this system with the City, PublicStuff was able to integrate with Edina’s existing Cityworks system. When PublicStuff receives a service request from a resident, the data is sent to Edina’s Cityworks system through an API. City staff then uses Cityworks to manage the request by making comments and updating its status. PublicStuff tracks updates as they occur in Cityworks, and adds these updates to the system accordingly.
Previously, city staff would receive email notifications with resident request details, which would be manually entered into Cityworks. The direct integration between PublicStuff and Cityworks enables automatic notifications within the system and eliminates the need for staff to manually enter request details. The direct integration also helps residents by providing them insight and transparency into the City’s process for addressing their issues.
Since launching the platform in June 2014, the City has seen more than 900 mobile app downloads and is on track to exceed their goal of 1,000 downloads by the end of the year. The City has most commonly received requests for street repairs, street light issues, and storm water problems, which have been entered directly into Edina’s Cityworks system via the PublicStuff integration. The ability for residents to upload photos of their issues has been the most helpful feature for city staff because it allows them to easily locate the problem and allocate resources to fix it accordingly, rather than just hearing a description from the resident over the phone.
Gayatri Mohan, Marketing & Community Coordinator, PublicStuff