911 Answer Time

Background: In July 2015, it took an average of 98.5 seconds for a 9-1-1 dispatcher to answer a call. The national average is 20 seconds and as part of his "brilliant at the basics" plan, Mayor Strickland made reducing 9-1-1 answer time an immediate priority when he took office in January 2016.
Service Question: How can 9-1-1 answer times meet the national standard of twenty seconds?
Analytics: Reducing 9-1-1 answer times was a significant challenge involving several process changes.  Analyzing call data was the first step to identifying possible solutions. In this case, the data showed that the dispatch center was understaffed, but not because they weren't getting enough applicants. Instead, qualified applicants were failing a harder than necessary typing test that hadn't been updated in years.  Analysis suggested adding additional call takers would significantly reduce answer times and drive the City closer to meeting the national standard. The data also helped identify peak call volume times so the the call center could staff appropriately.
Results: In November 2017, 9-1-1 dispatch centers met the national standard of answering 95% of calls within 20 seconds and, in the following months, have continued to maintain this level of service. Additionally, average answer times have dropped 90.9% from 98.5 seconds in July 2015, to consistently below 9 seconds throughout 2018. To see the current status, read more on the goal page here.