Columbia Wins 20 Tablets to Save Citizens Money

6 years 9 months 18 hours ago Sunday, June 24 2012 Jun 24, 2012 Sunday, June 24, 2012 3:36:00 PM CDT June 24, 2012 in News
By: Alex Jones

COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia won 20 8.9 inch Samsung Galaxy tablets, which are saving city workers time and money, meaning the tablets are also saving taxpayer dollars.

Information Technology Director Robert Simms entered a box.com contest, which asked 'what would your company do with 20 tablets and a year of enterprise service with Box's secure storage cloud service.' Simms said the tablets would provide a way to make the City of Columbia more efficient and effective. In return, he won the city the tablets.

"I wrote that we'd like to get our mobile workers out in the field and make them more efficient, give them access to information, make sure they can get information back to the city people that are still here and basically make them more efficient," Simms said.

Simms said the tablets are in seven departments:

  • The Neighborhood Resource Team has five tablets
  • The Police Department has two tablets
  • The Fire Department has two tablets
  • The Health Department/Animal Control has two tablets
  • The Water and Light Department has two tablets
  • The Public Works Department has two tablets
  • Simms said the IT Department has a few tablets too

The city's Neighborhood Response Coordinator Bill Cantin said implementing the tablets has changed the Neighborhood Response Team's approach. Cantin has worked for the city for years and is very excited about the change.

"It's something we're working to quantify," Cantin said. "We don't have numbers yet, but we're still doing what the neighborhood response team needs to be doing, but we're more directly engaging the neighborhoods. The benefits are being able to walk with the neighbors and hear their perspectives on what's going on."

Cantin said it helps them "get the ball rolling" on services and help residents in the neighborhood before having to issue a notice.

For more information on the City of Columbia's win, click here.

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