What is West Chester Connect?

On the evening of August 28, 2013 we hosted a public forum and training to the community regarding our new service, “West Chester Connect”. What is West Chester Connect?

Check out the slideshow that was used during the presentation.

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Local Press Covers WC Connect

The following article appeared in the “Daily Local News” on August 2, 2013.



WEST CHESTER – Borough officials are making it clear they want residents to submit their problems to them, and if residents don’t know how to do it they are willing to show them.

As a response to the new citizen engagement smartphone app available to residents, officials announced a free training session on the use of the app to any community member who wants to learn more about the service.
  
The free training seminar is set for Aug. 28 at 6:30 p.m. in the municipal building located at 401 East Gay Street.
The app had a soft launch in late June and officially went live July 8. 

 

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Titled “West Chester Connect,” the app allows anyone to easily and quickly report any environmental, quality-of-life or public safety concern directly to the appropriate borough staff.  

The reports can include photographs and exact GPS information; officials said this will help staff make decisions quicker and more efficiently than they could in the past.
    
According to the Bill Mann, the borough’s chief information officer, the idea for the app came after Councilman Chuck Christy attended a conference and passed the information onto Mann.
From there Mann investigated the various platforms the borough could use eventually settling with City Sourced. In a partnership, City Sourced and Mann designed the app.
 
“As soon as I saw (City Sourced) I knew we needed to do something like that to make it easier for the community to reach out,” Mann said. 
 
Mann added the cost to the borough, at $3,000, was within his IT budget.
“It was a no-brainer for the cost,” Mann said.
 
Since the release, Mann said the app has shown its value and has helped the borough complete tasks more efficiently.
 
In the monthly report Mann submits to Borough Council, a total of 31 work orders were recorded since the app’s release on July 8. Mann said of the work orders, about 70 percent have been citizen generated.
 
“I think with that usage for that period of time is good and hopefully it grows and grows,” Mann said.
As an element of the app, push notifications, are delivered to the reporting individual’s compatible device to keep them up to date and engaged as the work order is processed.
 
Most important to officials is that the app provides accountability as unfilled orders will be clearly visible to app users.
 
Borough officials said in a statement the borough is committed “to using technology when possible to make engagement and involvement between the members of our community and our government officials as productive as possible.”
 
The app is free and available in the Apple, Android, Windows Phone and Blackberry stores. Those looking for it can search for “West Chester” or “West Chester Connect” to download the app.
Residents can also register at www.citysourced.com and report incidents from their home computer.

This will provide another way to keep up on all of the work orders created by citizens.

Mann said what drew him to the app was its ability to work across platforms and to work with different types of smartphones.
 
“It’s another way to publicize it,” Mann said. “We all have different levels of expertise on these things. I figured it would get the word out more and give some hands-on experience.”
 
If the training session goes well, Mann said he is willing to host a few each year.
Community members who wish to sign up or have questions about the training are asked to contact the chief information officer, William Mann at wmann@west-chester.com.
 
Follow Daily Local News staff writer Jeremy Gerrard on Twitter @JeremyGerrard.

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West Chester Connect – Free Training

West Chester Connect is our new free Citizen Engagement Smartphone App which allows citizens to report public safety, environmental and quality of life issues directly from their smartphones.
 
The Borough is offering free “West Chester Connect” training to anyone from the community who would like to learn more about our new service. The free training is being offered on August 28, 2013 at 6:30 PM in the municipal building located at 401 East gay Street, west Chester PA 19380.
 
If you would like to sign up or if you have any questions about the training please contact the Chief Information Officer, William Mann here.
 
West Chester Connect
Through the new exciting service, “West Chester Connect” any citizen who downloads the free “West Chester Connect” app will be able to quickly and easily report environmental, quality of life and public safety concerns directly to the appropriate government staff.
 
The work orders can include photographs and exact GPS information which will help the staff make decisions quicker and more efficiently then every before.
 
“West Chester Connect” is available in the Android, Apple, Blackberry and Windows smartphone stores.   
 
You can read more here.

 

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West Chester Connect Launches July 8, 2013

The Borough of West Chester is proud to announce that we are providing a new service which is intended to enhance civic engagement within our community.



“West Chester Connect” is the name of our new service. You can download the free app in your smartphone’s app store by searching for “West Chester Connect”. The app is free of charge. Once downloaded you can easily report “environmental”, “public safety” & “quality of life” issues. You can then follow the process of your work orders through push notifications on your smart phone.

“West Chester Connect” officially launches on July 8, 2013.

You can learn more about “West Chester Connect” by visiting our website at www.west-chester.com.

This service is not intended for emergencies. As always continue to call 911 for emergency situations.



What is West Chester Connect? 

West Chester Connect is simply a way of fostering engagement between citizens and their government. Through the free “West Chester Connect” smartphone app citizens can easily and quickly provide information regarding environmental, public safety and quality of life issues. 

Citizens can then remain engaged with their government as the work orders are processed and completed through push notifications on their smartphones.

What is West Chester Connect NOT For?

First and foremost. West Chester Connect is not for reporting emergency situations.  The reports made through this service are handled as non-emergency situations. 

West Chester Connect is not a place for social commentary. 

You can read the official press release here.

You can learn more by reading our “Citizen Guide”

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West Chester Connect Launches July 8, 2013

West Chester Connect officially launches next Monday, July 8. You can read the press release here.

You can also check out our “West Chester Connect – Citizen Guidehere.



West Chester Connect – Press Release
 
 


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West Chester Connect Is On The Horizon!

Today the Windows Phone 8 app for “West Chester Connect” became available in the Windows Store. The iPhone and Android Apps are already available. Still waiting on Blackberry to approve our app, but that will not stop us from launching our very exciting new citizen engagement tool, “West Chester Connect” next month! Stay tuned for exciting details!

West Chester Connect in the Windows Phone Store!

The mission of “West Chester Connect” is to provide enhanced communication between our community and our staff. Work Orders that are reported through “West Chester Connect” shall be handled in the same professional manner as service requests made by telephone, walk-in or email.

Work Orders shall be completed in a timely and professional manner at all times. It should be understood that anyone can access any work order filed through “West Chester Connect”.

Citizens who submit work orders have the ability to receive “push notifications” on their mobile device as the work order is processed.

Work Orders completed through “West Chester Connect” are a public record and shall be handled in the most efficient manner possible.

The Borough of West Chester is committed to utilizing technology whenever possible in order to improve engagement and involvement between the members of our community and our government.

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