Imagine calling a 311 hotline that acts like a iPhone’s Siri without the frustrations, artificial intelligence may provide that one day. Cities employ a 311 call system to inform citizens of the standard information they need to know like when is trash day, how to file civic complaints, and how long the local pool is open. Now at The North Carolina Innovation Center, the use artificial intelligence (A.I) to help answer employee’s standard problem like resetting passwords. This allowed the IT department to focus on more time consuming and higher priority task. Now this A.I technology is being considered for cities 311 systems. Now this is still in an experimental phase, but this kind of technology has been developing for years.

Take Siri or Alexa for consideration, you ask a question and they provide answers for you. It is essential the same thing scaled to a city. This would allow the call center to manage calls to the phone operators based on need or complexity. So if you wanted to know something like road closures, an A.I response will be given to you. Essentially you city or town would have its own Alexa.

Aside from the traditional roadblock of government doing something to be more modern. The biggest challenge is making sure the technology would work. There is a lot of complexities to figure out. How the technology would handle a major influx of calls? Sometimes calls spike so  much it could shut down the switchboards. How do you insure it does not crash unexpectedly?

All these questions will be answered one day, but the biggest question is will people like it?

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