The City of Chicago resides within Cook County, which with a population of about 5.2 million residents, is the second largest county in the United States. The Cook County President sits at the head of the Board of Commissioners, and together they set policies and laws for the county regarding property, public health services, public safety, and the maintenance of county highways. As the entity that resides at the head of the Board meetings, the Cook County President’s Office (CCPO) is charged with the responsibility of storing and managing all pertinent constituent and contact information as well as all communication activities linked to communities and organizations. In 2014, prior to Catalyst involvement, the CCPO utilized a simple MS Excel spreadsheet to store all constituent data, which became increasingly difficult to track and manage. To improve the CCPO’s data management and allow for expanded tracking ability, the CCPO contracted with Catalyst to implement a Salesforce CRM solution.
The new solution merged all of the CCPO’s existing data into one database and provided the ability to store, track, and manage the data through an intuitive, multi-user application. In order to tailor the tool to the CCPO’s unique needs and specifications, the Catalyst Team worked closely with the CCPO and the Bureau of Technology to gather all necessary requirements. With the new, custom-tailored solution implemented, the CCPO was given the ability to seamlessly track all information and communication activities linked to community contacts and organizations. Additionally, the CCPO could set up multiple user accounts allowing more than one admin access to the system at one time, a feature not previously available through the use of the Excel spreadsheet.
Prior to the new CRM, access to the spreadsheet was not available remotely, which restricted data access, additions, and tracking to on-site admin only. The new solution offered the ability to access data on-site as well as remotely via a mobile device, making additions and edits to constituent information easier, more efficient, and more up-to-date. Through the fully integrated approach, the CCPO was given the ability to seamlessly manage all community and organization contacts as well as track events, meetings, and phone calls, further improving their day-to-day functions. With the Salesforce tool implemented by Catalyst, the CCPO is utilizing a best-of-breed solution that not only improved its communication with the many County departments, but also with the millions of residents living in Cook County.