Public sector officials who attended the Lac Carling Congress this week spent a lot of time talking about how to adopt a more “customer service” approach to their relationship with citizens — and Toronto’s 311 service came up several times as an example of doing it right.
Launched last fall, 311 was a $35-million project to offer an integrated contact centre and single phone number for residents of the country’s largest city to get information on everything from pothole fixes and garbage pickup to broken water mains. Calls can not only make service requests but get an estimate on when work will be done, officials have said. And unlike services that would only be available in banker’s hours, 311 runs 24/7 out of the old Metro Hall building.
During IT World’s 14th annual Lac Carling I had an opportunity to speak with Neil Evans, who runs the project office for 311, and asked him about how the service will evolve.