The City of San Antonio Improves Pothole Repair Problem by 480%

Despite the city’s efforts to fill potholes in a timely manner, a Community Survey of resident satisfaction revealed the satisfaction rate in 2014 registered 38%. With under 50% satisfaction, the City was discouraged to read these results.

What was concerning is they thought they were doing pretty well in the potholes category. If a citizen reported a pothole, the City had 48 hours to complete the request, using their Pothole Patrol team. They were meeting this service level standard 98% of the time. Receiving a low rating was disappointing.

How do you improve something that has a 98% success rate?

They started asking questions such as:

  • Are we using the right equipment?
  • Is it more effective to repair potholes a different way?
  • Are we doing it as effectively as possible?
  • Are we proactive enough in repairing potholes?

They wanted to understand the real problem instead of making snap judgements and relying on internal measures of satisfaction.

The City spent another 3-6 months collecting more actionable pothole data. Delivering better services to residents is one of the City’s primary objectives. What the City of San Antonio discovered about pothole satisfaction was this: They were not being proactive enough in fixing potholes. They were waiting until residents reported potholes. Even though they responded in a timely manner, what residents really wanted was the City to fix the potholes without having to call. They started leveraging their own city employees to spot potholes proactively and fix them.

As for potholes, the City went from a mediocre 13,000 potholes repaired in 2014 to 75,000 potholes repaired in 2017 – a 480% increase! The City of San Antonio is confident their next Community Survey will show improved pothole satisfaction results. Here are some recent survey results >>>

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