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Delivering Unified Citizen
Services Cost-Effectively
Using Innovative Technology to Improve
Citizen Service Engagement
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
Contents
What’s in a Services Center .........1
Considerations Before
Consolidation ....................................2
Characteristics of a Successful
Center ...................................................3
Best Practices for Citizen Services
Centers .................................................4
Innovative Choices for Your
Center ...................................................6
Introduction
For state and local governments, citizen services centers
are becoming a vital link with their constituents, serving as
the primary point of contact for citizens to access
resources, assistance, and information. Because of this, the
performance of a services center can be the difference
between a successful interaction and a frustrating one. By
implementing a services center, state and local
governments, including workers, supervisors, and elected
officials, can better serve constituents while meeting
business and technical challenges in the face of resource
constraints.
Written for agency decision makers, this paper describes the challenges that
state and local governments typically face when developing or transforming a
services center. It also explores the characteristics of a successful, modern,
unified citizen services center and describes innovative offerings from
Microsoft that can help you accelerate the development or modernization of
your citizen services center.
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
1
What’s in a Services Center
Unified citizen services for state and local governments
may consolidate constituent service functions—from waste
management to water service to building permits—and
consist of systems of people, technology, and business
processes.
Of course, services centers vary in sophistication. A center may consist of a
part-time or full-time employee who answers questions and refers citizens to
responsible departments. More complex and complete services centers may
employ a 311 number to access a variety of nonemergency government
services, use a citizen relationship management (CRM) system, automate
referrals, and connect to back-end work order and other management systems.
Why Consolidate
Budgetary restraints, especially in economically difficult times, dictate that
governments tighten their belts while retaining as many services as possible.
Often, deploying operationally efficient solutions is the answer. Increasingly,
state and local governments are recognizing the role that consolidated contact
centers can play in streamlining operations and controlling costs while
meeting both constituent and organizational needs.
Unified services centers consolidate the tasks of citizen services to streamline
and avoid the need for each individual department or division to staff this role.
This helps prevent staffing shortfalls, institutes service standards and processes,
and ultimately controls costs. Consider adopting, consolidating, or enhancing a
citizen services center if your organization faces any of the following
challenges:
 Citizens are asking for the same kind of open access to, and interaction with,
governmental entities as they get with their favorite online retailer,
insurance agent, or healthcare provider.
 New legislation or other mandates have been implemented to streamline
and improve services, reduce costs, and improve citizen self-service and
engagement.
 Your agency needs to publicly demonstrate accountability and reverse the
perception of government as inefficient and burdened with bureaucracy.
 Your organization wants to improve safety and disaster prevention,
mitigation, and recovery.
Citizen Services Center Success
A large city in the southern United
States faced shrinking budgets,
fewer resources to handle service
requests, and the need to control
costs while providing enough data
storage and redundancy to keep its
services center operating in the
event of a disaster such as a
hurricane. Its IT department
improved services by developing
more self-service options for
citizens. The city also overcame
capital expense–budgeting issues,
vastly improved time-to-market for
citizen services, and developed a
cost-effective storage and disaster
recovery model by turning to a
subscription-based cloud-
computing model.
Who Has Services Centers
In recent years, large state and
local government entities have
created citizen services contact
centers that centrally manage
service requests on behalf of a
range of departments and services.
In the sidebars of this paper, you
can read summaries about these
services centers, including the
successes and challenges that their
leaders experience, and the vision
these leaders have for improving
citizen relationships with
government.
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
2
Considerations Before Consolidation
Instituting or transforming a citizen services center poses
several challenges. You might have to introduce new and
different processes and technologies, which affects people,
roles, budgets, and job functions, often across
departments and lines of accountability. Success requires
sponsorship and buy-in at the highest levels and within
each affected department.
How to choose a solution that supports your vision of consolidation and
ensure success:
 Select technology that people will use. Choose a user-friendly solution
that will lower training requirements and encourage rapid, widespread
adoption.
 Choice of delivery models. Does the solution offer the choice of cloud
deployment or on-premises deployment? This choice can empower
government entities to select the most suitable model based on services
center size, budget-planning cycle, and other factors.
 The most for your dollar. Look for a solution that integrates well with your
current tools and systems.
 Simple implementation. How easy will the solution be to deploy? Ensure
that the solution includes assistance for easy execution.
 Future growth. Choose a solution that can accommodate future growth
through customizable options.
 Cost-effective redundancy and disaster recovery. Ensure that the solution
provides an affordable citizen services center backup and recovery plan.
Technology and Expertise Challenges
Your agency may face these challenges, among others:
 Multiple software applications and disparate siloes of information consume
your time and budget.
 Available technologies do not support your full range of requirements or
your vision of consolidation.
 You might expend considerable effort, time, and money to implement
technologies for supporting your services center; customize them to match
your business processes; and integrate, maintain, and learn the solution.
 Past, failed processes or technology transformations create inertia for new
technology proposals.
 You might lack services center expertise and awareness of where to find it.
Organizational Challenges
 Resistance to changes in
organizational processes.
 Funding process transformation
and technology initiatives:
pooling budgets and resources
and reaching consensus on
processes, capital, and
operations budgets.
 Difficulty competing against
other budget requests.
 Struggles with proving valuable
services.
 Limited staff resources.
Citizen Services Snapshot
“Our vision is to enhance the
relationship between our citizens
and local government in addition
to promoting the county’s
commitment to customer service.
We will accomplish this by
providing direct access to an
integrated customer service call
center designed to receive, relay,
monitor, and manage citizen
requests and ensure delivery of
public service in a timely fashion.”
Director of a county response
management agency in the
southern United States
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
3
Characteristics of a Successful Center
A services center engages citizens openly by using a
variety of contact methods and provides tools and
processes for continuous improvement. Several
components are present in a successful, unified services
center and the solutions that support it.
True Service
You want to help citizens easily complete transactions, report nuisances, pay
fines, or conduct other business efficiently. In many cases, the services center
provides a variety of methods for citizens to interact with government, such as
a citizen portal, mobile applications, chat, and email.
Service experiences of this nature affirm to citizens that your jurisdiction has
their interests in mind. By using software that provides a knowledge base and
uses workflows to guide tasks such as establishing recycling pickup or
reporting a noise complaint, contact center representatives can handle
requests and inquiries on a variety of topics for multiple departments.
Graceful Delegation
Delegating or assigning tasks can be bumpy in any business. In unified services
centers, the point of information intake—such as a live agent or web
interface—can connect transparently to work order, project tracking, finance,
or other systems. This helps jurisdictions manage themselves, promote timely
issue responses and resolutions, and show results.
Practical Technology
You might get pushback from employees because a new technology is
unfamiliar, difficult to use, or seems like another data-entry task. You can
encourage services center agents, supervisors, directors, and managers to
adopt the application when you employ easy-to-use software that avoids
duplicate data entry and streamlines operations between the point of contact
and the back office. Likewise, you will encourage adoption and usage by
deploying user-friendly citizen portals and other self-service means of
interacting with government.
Analytical and Reporting Capabilities
In a “show me” and “prove it” culture, fact-based decisions can help bolster
transparency and underscore accountability. Solutions for services centers can
provide the data to prove the value of your services center so that it can better
support you against scrutiny, especially when budget cuts loom. Reports help
managers oversee the services center, and business intelligence tools help
department managers gain the insight they need to manage, improve, and
streamline service delivery, including resources and budget.
Citizen Services Center Success
A citizen services center in a large
city in the southern United States
used software that didn't match the
way departments worked, so the
city implemented new CRM
software that more closely matches
business processes. By doing so,
the center improved case tracking
and resolution and, ultimately,
enhanced its service. Citizen
Citizen Services Snapshot
“Government and citizens need to
realize that the old way of
interaction cannot and does not
work anymore. Despite budget cuts
and growing population and
demand, we must find ways to
work together so all parties are
satisfied.”
Director at a combined city-county
jurisdiction in the western United
States
Citizen Services Snapshot
“I anticipate challenges with
reengineering work processes for
our future 311 services. We may
face political challenges when
officials are asked to change work
processes that have been in place
for many years.”
Management Information Systems
Director at a county government in
the southern United States
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
4
Best Practices for Citizen Services Centers
A unified services center can help your government entity
show accountability, progress, and efficiency to
constituents. Consider these best practices while you plan
for your services center.
Avoiding Trouble
Developing a new services center or undertaking a services center upgrade
and consolidation project can put your organization at risk for high costs and
unforeseen expenses. Many organizations experience lengthy, costly
technology implementations that eliminate funds for training, support, or
maintenance. Look for:
 Services providers with a strong track record of public-sector success.
 Easy-to-use technology to avoid costly training and long learning curves.
 Solutions that are based on widely adopted, open technology standards so
that the solution will be simple to configure, integrate, and customize
without hiring expensive consultants.
Finding the Right Delivery Model
Find solution options that offer budgetary and technological models that are
flexible.
 Penny-wise. Often, state and local governments look for ways to start small
or amortize costs to fit budgets and budget cycles. Consider a cloud-
computing option, which offers a subscription approach. This model scales
based on need and offers predictable, periodic invoicing as opposed to
upfront deployment and implementation costs typical of some on-premises
CRM solutions.
 Shared services. By taking advantage of flexible architecture in modern
CRM solutions, associations of municipalities can share a services center or a
small community can come under the umbrella of a large city nearby. Your
agency might benefit from shared services through the multitenant features
of modern CRM software, spreading the costs among several municipalities.
 Earth-friendly technology, right-sized. When demand and volume
increase—during a snowstorm, for example—your citizen services center
needs to be able to respond and scale without overburdening the system.
Cloud computing can be a good choice, with its ability to support the
increased demand by providing additional computing power as needed.
Users only pay for the additional processing power required and there is no
need to continually support and power backup servers and infrastructure for
only a few days or weeks of peak usage—a choice that saves costs and is
environmentally friendly.
Delivering Services Cost-Effectively
Where do you start in building or modernizing your services center? To make
Citizen Services Center Success
A citizen services center in a large
city in the southern United States
used software that didn't match the
way departments worked, so the
city implemented new CRM
software that more closely matches
business processes. By doing so,
the center improved case tracking
and resolution and, ultimately,
enhanced its service. Citizen
services center staff handle up to
400 calls a day, serving 20 divisions
and 230,000 residents.
Citizen Services Snapshot
“When evaluating technologies, we
consider the compatibility of the
solution with our ERP system and
the ability to use its data. We avoid
proprietary or stand-alone systems
because we strive to provide
technology services at an enterprise
level.”
IT Manager at a large city in the
southern United States
Citizen Services Snapshot
A county government in the
southwestern United States with a
budget of just under U.S.$75
million has limited funds for
acquiring new technology.
Nevertheless, the jurisdiction strives
to provide an increasing number of
citizen services by using web and
mobile technologies.
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
5
the wisest use of public resources, you probably want a streamlined approach
that will deliver value quickly and cost-effectively, remain affordable in the
long-term, and provide ease-of-use. A few options come to mind:
1. Developing it yourself, or even hiring consultants to implement ready-made
software, could be prohibitively expensive.
2. You might rely on commercial off-the-shelf software built for services
centers, which may provide many of the features and capabilities. However,
this might be expensive to implement, customize, and maintain, and it may
not integrate with your existing technologies, which could force you into
vendor lock-in.
3. You could consider a holistic approach that introduces:
 Modern CRM technology based on open standards that can access
your existing systems and data.
 A services center framework that gives you a jump-start by defining
processes and best practices.
 Expertise from people with hands-on services center experience.
Getting a Jump-Start
If you like the vision of option 3, Microsoft can help you avoid many
implementation headaches and gain a cost-effective, rapid start on your
citizen services center. The 311 Service Center accelerator for Microsoft
Dynamics® CRM is a collection of intellectual properties that gives agencies a
starting point and blueprint for a citizen services center. The accelerator:
 Provides a framework for servicing citizen requests and providing
information. Including guidance for managing back-office processing and
using resources efficiently.
 Provides guidance on what a modern services center should include so that
you avoid conducting extensive research.
 Shows how to extend Microsoft Dynamics CRM and tailor it to your needs
without writing code.
Microsoft developed the 311 Service Center accelerator for Microsoft
Dynamics CRM by working with technology and public-sector experts who
have implemented citizen services centers around the nation. Combine the
accelerator with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and you’ll have a solution starter
that is familiar, addresses the citizen services life cycle, connects front-office
citizen services with back-office service fulfillment systems and workflows, and
offers you a budget-friendly option, whether you deploy it in the cloud or on-
premises.
Citizen Services Center Success
The largest county government in
the United States serves
approximately 12 million residents.
Its elected board of supervisors is
responsible for services to these
constituents. The county
implemented a CRM solution that
serves as the basis for applications
that track issues constituents
submit across 88 cities.
Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively
6
Innovative Choices for Your Center
Consider the Microsoft® vision, technologies, and
implementation approach for your citizen services center.
Microsoft solutions for citizen services centers offer advantages for
organizations seeking to meet constituent, organizational, and technology
needs, including:
 Self-service citizen portals. Interactive, web-based citizen portals with a
mapping component let citizens search for information, submit service
requests, visualize geographic-location information, and monitor the
progress of active cases.
 Case management and workflows. Whether a citizen initiates contact by
phone or submits a request over the web, an end-to-end service request
engine handles all the required routing and workflow, from the creation of a
service request all the way through resolution, keeping stakeholders
informed.
 Call scripts. Interactive, step-by-step scripts, tailored to six specific scenarios,
help agents handle calls and requests more efficiently and consistently. This
can help minimize errors and improve the cost-effectiveness of service
delivery.
 Management dashboards and reporting. Powerful reporting capabilities
through dashboards and standard reports, which seamlessly export to
Microsoft Excel® and other familiar formats, enhance performance tracking
and accountability. Management-oriented reports display summary data of
service requests by case type, priority, geographic distribution, and
resolution time. These reports supply the timely business intelligence that
enables cities and counties to analyze trends in citizen requests, monitor
service-level agreements, and improve accuracy and planning.
 Mobile platform and telephony. Mobile web portal views that work across
all browser-enabled devices let citizens submit requests and access
information via their mobile phones. This mobile connectivity also lets
agency workers update case information directly from the field. Telephony
integration is accomplished through connectors as an extension.
 A knowledge base. The capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics CRM make it
easier to search internal and public data sources so that both citizens and
agency staff can find the information they need quickly.
This document is provided “as is.” Information and views expressed in this document,
including URL and other Internet website references, may change without notice. You bear the
risk of using it.
This document does not provide you with any legal rights to any intellectual property in any
Microsoft product. You may copy and use this document for your internal, reference purposes.
© 2011 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Contact Us
 Call the Microsoft Dynamics
government team at 1 (888) 568-
8500 or send an email to
uspubweb@microsoft.com.
 For more information about the
311 Service Center accelerator for
Microsoft Dynamics CRM, go to:
www.microsoft.com/gov311
 Microsoft partners. Access a
broad community of Microsoft
qualified developers and
implementation partners that have
the required technical skills and
citizen services business acumen.
 Microsoft implementation
methodology. The Microsoft
Dynamics Sure Step methodology
serves as an effective guide to
realizing successful projects.
 Accelerator. Find out more about
the Citizen Services accelerator
code and documentation
 Read these case studies to learn
how municipalities are
transforming citizen services by
using solutions based on
Microsoft technology:
 City of Birmingham—311 Call
Center Boosts Operational
Efficiency, Avoids Higher Costs
with CRM Solution
 City of Miami—City
Government Improves Service
Offerings, Cuts Costs with
“Cloud” Services Solution
 Los Angeles County—Los
Angeles County Board of
Supervisors Speeds
Application Development with
CRM Platform

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White Paper_CRM_Microsoft_311Citizen Services

  • 1. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively Using Innovative Technology to Improve Citizen Service Engagement
  • 2. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively Contents What’s in a Services Center .........1 Considerations Before Consolidation ....................................2 Characteristics of a Successful Center ...................................................3 Best Practices for Citizen Services Centers .................................................4 Innovative Choices for Your Center ...................................................6 Introduction For state and local governments, citizen services centers are becoming a vital link with their constituents, serving as the primary point of contact for citizens to access resources, assistance, and information. Because of this, the performance of a services center can be the difference between a successful interaction and a frustrating one. By implementing a services center, state and local governments, including workers, supervisors, and elected officials, can better serve constituents while meeting business and technical challenges in the face of resource constraints. Written for agency decision makers, this paper describes the challenges that state and local governments typically face when developing or transforming a services center. It also explores the characteristics of a successful, modern, unified citizen services center and describes innovative offerings from Microsoft that can help you accelerate the development or modernization of your citizen services center.
  • 3. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 1 What’s in a Services Center Unified citizen services for state and local governments may consolidate constituent service functions—from waste management to water service to building permits—and consist of systems of people, technology, and business processes. Of course, services centers vary in sophistication. A center may consist of a part-time or full-time employee who answers questions and refers citizens to responsible departments. More complex and complete services centers may employ a 311 number to access a variety of nonemergency government services, use a citizen relationship management (CRM) system, automate referrals, and connect to back-end work order and other management systems. Why Consolidate Budgetary restraints, especially in economically difficult times, dictate that governments tighten their belts while retaining as many services as possible. Often, deploying operationally efficient solutions is the answer. Increasingly, state and local governments are recognizing the role that consolidated contact centers can play in streamlining operations and controlling costs while meeting both constituent and organizational needs. Unified services centers consolidate the tasks of citizen services to streamline and avoid the need for each individual department or division to staff this role. This helps prevent staffing shortfalls, institutes service standards and processes, and ultimately controls costs. Consider adopting, consolidating, or enhancing a citizen services center if your organization faces any of the following challenges:  Citizens are asking for the same kind of open access to, and interaction with, governmental entities as they get with their favorite online retailer, insurance agent, or healthcare provider.  New legislation or other mandates have been implemented to streamline and improve services, reduce costs, and improve citizen self-service and engagement.  Your agency needs to publicly demonstrate accountability and reverse the perception of government as inefficient and burdened with bureaucracy.  Your organization wants to improve safety and disaster prevention, mitigation, and recovery. Citizen Services Center Success A large city in the southern United States faced shrinking budgets, fewer resources to handle service requests, and the need to control costs while providing enough data storage and redundancy to keep its services center operating in the event of a disaster such as a hurricane. Its IT department improved services by developing more self-service options for citizens. The city also overcame capital expense–budgeting issues, vastly improved time-to-market for citizen services, and developed a cost-effective storage and disaster recovery model by turning to a subscription-based cloud- computing model. Who Has Services Centers In recent years, large state and local government entities have created citizen services contact centers that centrally manage service requests on behalf of a range of departments and services. In the sidebars of this paper, you can read summaries about these services centers, including the successes and challenges that their leaders experience, and the vision these leaders have for improving citizen relationships with government.
  • 4. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 2 Considerations Before Consolidation Instituting or transforming a citizen services center poses several challenges. You might have to introduce new and different processes and technologies, which affects people, roles, budgets, and job functions, often across departments and lines of accountability. Success requires sponsorship and buy-in at the highest levels and within each affected department. How to choose a solution that supports your vision of consolidation and ensure success:  Select technology that people will use. Choose a user-friendly solution that will lower training requirements and encourage rapid, widespread adoption.  Choice of delivery models. Does the solution offer the choice of cloud deployment or on-premises deployment? This choice can empower government entities to select the most suitable model based on services center size, budget-planning cycle, and other factors.  The most for your dollar. Look for a solution that integrates well with your current tools and systems.  Simple implementation. How easy will the solution be to deploy? Ensure that the solution includes assistance for easy execution.  Future growth. Choose a solution that can accommodate future growth through customizable options.  Cost-effective redundancy and disaster recovery. Ensure that the solution provides an affordable citizen services center backup and recovery plan. Technology and Expertise Challenges Your agency may face these challenges, among others:  Multiple software applications and disparate siloes of information consume your time and budget.  Available technologies do not support your full range of requirements or your vision of consolidation.  You might expend considerable effort, time, and money to implement technologies for supporting your services center; customize them to match your business processes; and integrate, maintain, and learn the solution.  Past, failed processes or technology transformations create inertia for new technology proposals.  You might lack services center expertise and awareness of where to find it. Organizational Challenges  Resistance to changes in organizational processes.  Funding process transformation and technology initiatives: pooling budgets and resources and reaching consensus on processes, capital, and operations budgets.  Difficulty competing against other budget requests.  Struggles with proving valuable services.  Limited staff resources. Citizen Services Snapshot “Our vision is to enhance the relationship between our citizens and local government in addition to promoting the county’s commitment to customer service. We will accomplish this by providing direct access to an integrated customer service call center designed to receive, relay, monitor, and manage citizen requests and ensure delivery of public service in a timely fashion.” Director of a county response management agency in the southern United States
  • 5. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 3 Characteristics of a Successful Center A services center engages citizens openly by using a variety of contact methods and provides tools and processes for continuous improvement. Several components are present in a successful, unified services center and the solutions that support it. True Service You want to help citizens easily complete transactions, report nuisances, pay fines, or conduct other business efficiently. In many cases, the services center provides a variety of methods for citizens to interact with government, such as a citizen portal, mobile applications, chat, and email. Service experiences of this nature affirm to citizens that your jurisdiction has their interests in mind. By using software that provides a knowledge base and uses workflows to guide tasks such as establishing recycling pickup or reporting a noise complaint, contact center representatives can handle requests and inquiries on a variety of topics for multiple departments. Graceful Delegation Delegating or assigning tasks can be bumpy in any business. In unified services centers, the point of information intake—such as a live agent or web interface—can connect transparently to work order, project tracking, finance, or other systems. This helps jurisdictions manage themselves, promote timely issue responses and resolutions, and show results. Practical Technology You might get pushback from employees because a new technology is unfamiliar, difficult to use, or seems like another data-entry task. You can encourage services center agents, supervisors, directors, and managers to adopt the application when you employ easy-to-use software that avoids duplicate data entry and streamlines operations between the point of contact and the back office. Likewise, you will encourage adoption and usage by deploying user-friendly citizen portals and other self-service means of interacting with government. Analytical and Reporting Capabilities In a “show me” and “prove it” culture, fact-based decisions can help bolster transparency and underscore accountability. Solutions for services centers can provide the data to prove the value of your services center so that it can better support you against scrutiny, especially when budget cuts loom. Reports help managers oversee the services center, and business intelligence tools help department managers gain the insight they need to manage, improve, and streamline service delivery, including resources and budget. Citizen Services Center Success A citizen services center in a large city in the southern United States used software that didn't match the way departments worked, so the city implemented new CRM software that more closely matches business processes. By doing so, the center improved case tracking and resolution and, ultimately, enhanced its service. Citizen Citizen Services Snapshot “Government and citizens need to realize that the old way of interaction cannot and does not work anymore. Despite budget cuts and growing population and demand, we must find ways to work together so all parties are satisfied.” Director at a combined city-county jurisdiction in the western United States Citizen Services Snapshot “I anticipate challenges with reengineering work processes for our future 311 services. We may face political challenges when officials are asked to change work processes that have been in place for many years.” Management Information Systems Director at a county government in the southern United States
  • 6. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 4 Best Practices for Citizen Services Centers A unified services center can help your government entity show accountability, progress, and efficiency to constituents. Consider these best practices while you plan for your services center. Avoiding Trouble Developing a new services center or undertaking a services center upgrade and consolidation project can put your organization at risk for high costs and unforeseen expenses. Many organizations experience lengthy, costly technology implementations that eliminate funds for training, support, or maintenance. Look for:  Services providers with a strong track record of public-sector success.  Easy-to-use technology to avoid costly training and long learning curves.  Solutions that are based on widely adopted, open technology standards so that the solution will be simple to configure, integrate, and customize without hiring expensive consultants. Finding the Right Delivery Model Find solution options that offer budgetary and technological models that are flexible.  Penny-wise. Often, state and local governments look for ways to start small or amortize costs to fit budgets and budget cycles. Consider a cloud- computing option, which offers a subscription approach. This model scales based on need and offers predictable, periodic invoicing as opposed to upfront deployment and implementation costs typical of some on-premises CRM solutions.  Shared services. By taking advantage of flexible architecture in modern CRM solutions, associations of municipalities can share a services center or a small community can come under the umbrella of a large city nearby. Your agency might benefit from shared services through the multitenant features of modern CRM software, spreading the costs among several municipalities.  Earth-friendly technology, right-sized. When demand and volume increase—during a snowstorm, for example—your citizen services center needs to be able to respond and scale without overburdening the system. Cloud computing can be a good choice, with its ability to support the increased demand by providing additional computing power as needed. Users only pay for the additional processing power required and there is no need to continually support and power backup servers and infrastructure for only a few days or weeks of peak usage—a choice that saves costs and is environmentally friendly. Delivering Services Cost-Effectively Where do you start in building or modernizing your services center? To make Citizen Services Center Success A citizen services center in a large city in the southern United States used software that didn't match the way departments worked, so the city implemented new CRM software that more closely matches business processes. By doing so, the center improved case tracking and resolution and, ultimately, enhanced its service. Citizen services center staff handle up to 400 calls a day, serving 20 divisions and 230,000 residents. Citizen Services Snapshot “When evaluating technologies, we consider the compatibility of the solution with our ERP system and the ability to use its data. We avoid proprietary or stand-alone systems because we strive to provide technology services at an enterprise level.” IT Manager at a large city in the southern United States Citizen Services Snapshot A county government in the southwestern United States with a budget of just under U.S.$75 million has limited funds for acquiring new technology. Nevertheless, the jurisdiction strives to provide an increasing number of citizen services by using web and mobile technologies.
  • 7. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 5 the wisest use of public resources, you probably want a streamlined approach that will deliver value quickly and cost-effectively, remain affordable in the long-term, and provide ease-of-use. A few options come to mind: 1. Developing it yourself, or even hiring consultants to implement ready-made software, could be prohibitively expensive. 2. You might rely on commercial off-the-shelf software built for services centers, which may provide many of the features and capabilities. However, this might be expensive to implement, customize, and maintain, and it may not integrate with your existing technologies, which could force you into vendor lock-in. 3. You could consider a holistic approach that introduces:  Modern CRM technology based on open standards that can access your existing systems and data.  A services center framework that gives you a jump-start by defining processes and best practices.  Expertise from people with hands-on services center experience. Getting a Jump-Start If you like the vision of option 3, Microsoft can help you avoid many implementation headaches and gain a cost-effective, rapid start on your citizen services center. The 311 Service Center accelerator for Microsoft Dynamics® CRM is a collection of intellectual properties that gives agencies a starting point and blueprint for a citizen services center. The accelerator:  Provides a framework for servicing citizen requests and providing information. Including guidance for managing back-office processing and using resources efficiently.  Provides guidance on what a modern services center should include so that you avoid conducting extensive research.  Shows how to extend Microsoft Dynamics CRM and tailor it to your needs without writing code. Microsoft developed the 311 Service Center accelerator for Microsoft Dynamics CRM by working with technology and public-sector experts who have implemented citizen services centers around the nation. Combine the accelerator with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and you’ll have a solution starter that is familiar, addresses the citizen services life cycle, connects front-office citizen services with back-office service fulfillment systems and workflows, and offers you a budget-friendly option, whether you deploy it in the cloud or on- premises. Citizen Services Center Success The largest county government in the United States serves approximately 12 million residents. Its elected board of supervisors is responsible for services to these constituents. The county implemented a CRM solution that serves as the basis for applications that track issues constituents submit across 88 cities.
  • 8. Delivering Unified Citizen Services Cost-Effectively 6 Innovative Choices for Your Center Consider the Microsoft® vision, technologies, and implementation approach for your citizen services center. Microsoft solutions for citizen services centers offer advantages for organizations seeking to meet constituent, organizational, and technology needs, including:  Self-service citizen portals. Interactive, web-based citizen portals with a mapping component let citizens search for information, submit service requests, visualize geographic-location information, and monitor the progress of active cases.  Case management and workflows. Whether a citizen initiates contact by phone or submits a request over the web, an end-to-end service request engine handles all the required routing and workflow, from the creation of a service request all the way through resolution, keeping stakeholders informed.  Call scripts. Interactive, step-by-step scripts, tailored to six specific scenarios, help agents handle calls and requests more efficiently and consistently. This can help minimize errors and improve the cost-effectiveness of service delivery.  Management dashboards and reporting. Powerful reporting capabilities through dashboards and standard reports, which seamlessly export to Microsoft Excel® and other familiar formats, enhance performance tracking and accountability. Management-oriented reports display summary data of service requests by case type, priority, geographic distribution, and resolution time. These reports supply the timely business intelligence that enables cities and counties to analyze trends in citizen requests, monitor service-level agreements, and improve accuracy and planning.  Mobile platform and telephony. Mobile web portal views that work across all browser-enabled devices let citizens submit requests and access information via their mobile phones. This mobile connectivity also lets agency workers update case information directly from the field. Telephony integration is accomplished through connectors as an extension.  A knowledge base. The capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics CRM make it easier to search internal and public data sources so that both citizens and agency staff can find the information they need quickly. This document is provided “as is.” Information and views expressed in this document, including URL and other Internet website references, may change without notice. You bear the risk of using it. This document does not provide you with any legal rights to any intellectual property in any Microsoft product. You may copy and use this document for your internal, reference purposes. © 2011 Microsoft. All rights reserved. Contact Us  Call the Microsoft Dynamics government team at 1 (888) 568- 8500 or send an email to uspubweb@microsoft.com.  For more information about the 311 Service Center accelerator for Microsoft Dynamics CRM, go to: www.microsoft.com/gov311  Microsoft partners. Access a broad community of Microsoft qualified developers and implementation partners that have the required technical skills and citizen services business acumen.  Microsoft implementation methodology. The Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step methodology serves as an effective guide to realizing successful projects.  Accelerator. Find out more about the Citizen Services accelerator code and documentation  Read these case studies to learn how municipalities are transforming citizen services by using solutions based on Microsoft technology:  City of Birmingham—311 Call Center Boosts Operational Efficiency, Avoids Higher Costs with CRM Solution  City of Miami—City Government Improves Service Offerings, Cuts Costs with “Cloud” Services Solution  Los Angeles County—Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Speeds Application Development with CRM Platform