The City’s five-year plan includes data-driven performance management to track how Austin accomplishes their goals such as safety, budget resources, and community services.
Formed a Reimagining Public Safety Task Force to offer recommendations to improve the Austin Police Department and public safety services.
Austin’s strategic performance dashboard allows the public to keep tabs on progress toward all six of SD23’s strategic outcomes: economic opportunity and affordability; mobility, safety, health and environment; culture and lifelong learning; and government that works for all.
Becoming a Data-Driven Organization
The City’s work to address racial inequities and increase police accountability can’t be separated from the data-driven performance framework established through SD23, says Kimberly Olivares, Austin’s deputy chief financial officer and former chief performance officer. The public safety work is just one dimension of the framework, which the entire city government is now geared toward.
The City maintains a strategic performance dashboard, allowing the public to keep tabs on progress toward all six of SD23’s strategic outcomes: economic opportunity and affordability; mobility; safety; health and environment; culture and lifelong learning; and government that works for all. The dashboard breaks each goal down into different indicator categories and metrics measuring progress, each given a clear status: “on track,” “off track,” “near target” or “measuring.” The City, in other words, is holding itself publicly accountable for SD23’s goals. (The dashboard is just one component of Austin’s larger open data portal.)
Having clear, shared priorities and KPIs to rally around was a crucial first step in the City’s performance management journey — and there was a strong desire across city departments for SD23’s structured approach, says Spencer Cronk, Austin’s city manager. The next step: establishing data-driven governance practices that enable change to be defined and tracked.
“You have to measure and make visible what you want to change and how you want to change,” Cronk says. “Defining success through specific data indicators has helped us stay focused — and that’s helping us achieve real outcomes for our residents.”