In 2019, Salt Lake City saved 2,121 hours of staff time using OpenCounter
Salt Lake City is experiencing tremendous growth in local business – over $1 billion in capital investment over the past 3 years–which means it needs resources to successfully serve its business development. The city’s business development department dedicated two staff members to help small businesses navigate the city processes. They view small businesses as their clients, representing them to the city and addressing needs and concerns.
One of the primary concerns was wait times for permits. About 14,000 customers would walk through the business development department doors each year, resulting in over 12,000 permits and more than 40,000 building inspections. The department has tens of thousands of customer interactions every year and within these interactions, there was inconsistent communication about what permits are needed. For example, if you spoke with a zoning person, they would tell you about the zoning requirements but would miss other subtleties within the project. Customer service needed improvement–staff felt it and wait times proved it.