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3 ‘Outside the Box’ Ideas to Become More Efficient at Handling Public Requests

It happens all the time – a member of your community phones City Hall looking for something, or wanting to voice a concern in front of Council, but they aren’t sure who to talk to, or where to start. 

Pointing people in the right direction is an integral part of being a Clerk, but it sure would save a lot of time if the public had a better idea of how the local government decision-making process works!

Here are 3 ideas that can help make the job of your Clerk easier:

1. Infographics

The City of Indianapolis, its Chamber of Commerce and the organization People of Urban Progress have created a great infographic called The People’s Guide to City Government.   It’s a great resource to help the community better understand how local government decisions are made, and where they should go to participate.

Costing anywhere from $500 - $1500 and being created by almost any marketing agency, infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than text articles. (See this infographic on infographics!)

2. Social Media

Whitby Implements CivicWeb Portal in Only 4 Days

“The new paperless meeting management solution has been a great success.  The launch of CivicWeb Portal ensures that important decisions made by Whitby Council are easily accessible for the public.”

-Town of Whitby Mayor, Pat Perkins

iCompass is proud to announce the 2013 winners of the iCompass Foundation Award - Debi Wilcox and Susan Cassel of the Town of Whitby, Ontario.  Each year we recognize an organization that displays excellence in deploying and utilizing our software.  We presented this award to Susan and Debi at a Council meeting in Whitby and received lots of positive feedback from Council, Staff and Public who attended.  

But only days after receiving this award the team from Whitby was at it again!

Warwick Township – Our Latest Citizen Engagement Success Story

The latest trends in technology are making it easier for local governments to engage with citizens on a day-to-day basis.  Our latest solution – CivicWeb Portal is completely transforming the concept of open government and how municipalities become more transparent on tight time and financial budgets.   Warwick Township, Ontario is the latest example.

With CivicWeb Portal instead of posting something online, the framework is developed so that once you are done a report, agenda or minutes, it shows up formatted and in the proper spot on the web portal for viewing by the public. Preselect what you want to show, and that’s really the last you’ll have to worry about it. 

Warwick Township is the latest organization to launch the open government web portal.  Looking for a way to more easily share important, searchable information from Council was a top priority.  And when we told them CivicWeb Portal fit seamlessly into their current meeting workflow the work began quickly to get it online. 

“It’s extremely important that we provide up-to-date information from Council for our community online,” says Warwick Township Mayor Todd Case.  “This powerful resource will enhance Council communications making Warwick Township more open, transparent and accessible for the public.”

Big Wins

Citizen Engagment Smartphone App Launched in Quincy, Washington

Another exciting milestone for iCompass as InTouch Mobile goes live for the first time in the City of Quincy, Washington.  The staff has worked hard to get this project off the ground and is passionate about finding new ways to engage with the public.   In the words of Recreation Director Russ Harrington staff believe this citizen engagement smartphone app will be a key tool in ensuring Quincy remains clean, safe and beautiful.  Want to see InTouch Mobile in action?  Send us an email at

The full press release is below:

The City of Quincy and iCompass Technologies Launch Citizen Engagement Smartphone App InTouch Mobile

The City of Quincy, Washington in partnership with iCompass Technologies is excited to announce the release of ReportQuincy, a smartphone app that gives members of the community the ability to submit concerns from their cellphone 24/7 365 days a year.

An Exciting New Era in Leadership Begins at iCompass

The iCompass Board of Directors is pleased to announce the hiring of Paulin Laberge as the company’s new CEO.  This change in leadership was precipitated by the departure of iCompass Founder / President & CEO, Todd Stone, who on June 10, 2013, was appointed to the Executive Council of BC as Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, as well as Deputy House Leader.  These appointments followed on the heels of Todd’s election in May 2013 as MLA for Kamloops – South Thompson.  The Stone family remains the majority shareholder of the company.

As the new CEO of iCompass, Paulin is a well-known BC technology entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience in the industry.  Paulin has held a variety of technical and managerial positions in several public and private companies. He has first-hand experience in building and running organizations, developing effective strategies, securing financing, developing market-leading products, establishing strategic alliances, and marketing and selling domestically and internationally. 

Prior to joining iCompass as CEO, Paulin was an active member of the iCompass Board of Directors for nearly 3 years so he is intimately familiar with the customers, operations and employees of iCompass.

iCompass Goes Live With 2 More Websites

We are excited to see two more iCompass created websites go live today in the Ontario for The Township of Cramahe and The Town of Cochrane.  These websites feature two unique designs with the Township of Cramahe opting for a simple homepage with 5 links that take users into different features of the website.  Its loaded with information that is easy to find limiting the number of requests directed to the Township.  The Town of Cochrane opted made its Council information very prominent on the homepage to ensure the public can easily find the latest details on past and upcoming meetings. 

For more information on iCompass Content Management Solution contact us:


Keep Calm and Clerk On

At the IIMC Annual Conference we debuted some new shirts with the slogan Keep Calm and Clerk On.  The demand for these shirts was overwhelming but it wasn't because of design or colour, but rather the message – Keep Calm and Clerk On.  It speaks to the core of what it means to be a Clerk.  The effort it takes to deal with upset Council members, frustrated citizens and public requests for information, not to mention ensuring every meeting runs smoothly is substantial.  Stressful and time consuming are two words we often hear when talking to Clerks about their role, but one we ALWAYS hear is rewarding.  The ability to deal with all of these different groups of people and continue to push a community forward is what being a Clerk is all about.

Citizen Engagement Success Story

Congratulations to the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, Ontario for officially launching CivicWeb Portal - iCompass' new automated open government web portal.  The announcement has been met with great fanfare as local papers and other publications across North America have featured stories about this breakthrough in government transparency.  It's really exciting when you consider CivicWeb Portal was launched only a month ago and our development team continues to receive feedback from our Pilot Program as we plan further improvements. 

Have a look at some of the local coverage: - Read
Bradford Times - Read

Want to learn more about CivicWeb Portal?  Click here or contact for more information.

Bradford West Gwillimbury Goes Live With CivicWeb Portal

It's an exciting day for iCompass and the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury as it becomes the first local government in North America to launch CivicWeb Portal.  The automated online web portal is being used to engage with the community and share information in a variety of groundbreaking ways. 

The big wins according to Town Staff and Council are a greatly improved meeting process and a new platform for citizen engagement that opens up all sorts of new opportunities for the public to communicate with government officials.  

“Our new CivicWeb Portal solution has greatly improved the efficiency of the Clerk’s Division however we are even more pleased with how quick we can get information out to the public and how easy it is to find information about Council and Committee meetings” says Director of Legal Services/Clerk, Rebecca Murphy.

Read the official release

More Saskatchewan Municipalities Choose iCompass

iCompass Technologies is excited to announce 3 agreements with Saskatchewan municipalities as the Towns of Outlook and Hudson Bay have purchased Agenda SE.  In addition, The Town of Rosthern is implementing iCompass’ Meeting Management Solution.  This comes in the last few weeks of a group-buy program iCompass has initiated to help smaller local governments in Saskatchewan deliver ‘Big City’ services to their public while streamlining their internal meeting processes. 

If 10 municipalities provide signed agreements for Agenda SE to iCompass before April 26th, then they will all receive a reduced sales price.

“It is exciting to be taking a positive step into the future by using iCompass Technologies' Internet based solutions for paperless council meetings,” says Town of Rosthern CAO Nicole Lerat.  “I'm also looking forward to seeing how FilePro and Action Tracking will help streamline our day-to-day operations, creating a more efficient, more cost effective organization."

Municipal governments typically receive a full return on investment in about 6 months through saved paper and overtime expenses once implementing a solution from iCompass.