Pataskala's new Community Customer Service Response (CCSR) system will be similar to tracking a FedEx package, said service director BJ King.

Pataskala’s new Community Customer Service Response (CCSR) system will be similar to tracking a FedEx package, said service director BJ King.

This month, Pataskala will implement the CCSR, allowing residents to submit service requests online or through smart phones and then track the progress of the request in real time.

King said residents can submit service requests to the various city departments and, at the time of the request, receive a code number to log onto the system at any time and monitor the progress from start to finish.

“I’ll type in: ‘It’s finished,’” he said.

Also, the resident will receive automatic email notification each time a city staff member updates the progress.

King said the system also will help the city departments organize service requests and track their own progress internally.

“We’re going to use it for self-reporting, as well,” he said. “I think it’s going to be a great tool for us.”

King said staff members are trained on the system and he sees no problem with having the system up and running within a matter weeks. He said it is important for residents to have the ability to make requests from smart phones, as well as the city’s website. That function is for residents, for example, who might see a large pothole or a street lamp not working and can report it immediately.

King said he isn’t worried about people abusing the system or reporting false service calls.

“They can do that now,” he said, via email or phone.

Pataskala Mayor Steve Butcher said he is pleased “any time we can give the residents another method to communicate with the city.”

He said this type of application isn’t anything new, though it is new to Pataskala. Butcher said the city has been working on implementing the system for four or five months.

Butcher was clear that a smartphone is not required to use the system. Any home computer with an Internet connection can access the system on Pataskala’s website. Residents without a computer can still call in service requests, but they will not have the ability to track the request’s progress.

Butcher said the CCSR system will improve customer service by making the departments more accessible. He said each department is only “one person deep,” meaning there’s a single person available to answer phones and that person may be on site or otherwise not available to answer calls for some of the day. The CCSR system allows any resident with Internet access to know that his or her request was received and acknowledged.

He said department heads also could work more efficiently if they do not have to answer phones as often.

“We’re trying to free up that single person’s work as well,” said Butcher.