In public consultation, organizations are looking for input, often on how their project may impact the public (positively or negatively). This public input can help the organization to understand the impacts of their projects, the values of the affected communities, and even new ideas and perspectives that can strengthen the project and create better outcomes for the communities and the project.
Public Consultation Inevitably Shifts to More Focused Engagement
As you consult with the public, you'll inevitably come to a place where you'll need to engage in smaller groups or even one-on-one to focus on key relationships, navigating any issues, commitments, concerns, and feedback that arises.
As an example, consider a city that’s implementing new bike lanes. Before implementing the lanes, the city would need to identify the groups that might be impacted by the proposed bike lanes and collect a large net of feedback and comments on the proposed project. There are excellent online tools for this type of public consultation like Survey Monkey and website forums.
Eventually, the city will need to focus more narrowly, prioritizing engagements on impacted and influential individuals and groups like landowners whose property will be affected by the bike lanes, business owners who might see disruptions to their business, or other residents and any other influential parties who could be impacted by the plans and decisions made.
As the city begins this focused stakeholder engagement, they'll need a way to keep everything organized, searchable and shareable between teams, especially as stakeholders and community members start raising potential issues or commitments.
How to Keep Your Stakeholder Engagement Organized
Regardless of what your project entails, to keep your engagements focused and efficient, you want to ensure you’re logging all the information you’re gathering into a centralized, searchable and understandable system.
The best way to organize and streamline your stakeholder information is with Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM) software, like our SRM, Jambo.
Looking for a comprehensive guide to SRM software? Check out our blog!
6 Ways Jambo Helps You with Public Consultation
Jambo is a Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM) software that simplifies how organizations manage their stakeholder engagement and consultation projects.
Keeping all your stakeholder information centralized, organized and understandable, Jambo acts as your team’s single source of truth, helping you to collaborate in real-time with the most up-to-date information. This empowers you and your teams to engage more effectively for fewer project risks, stronger stakeholder relationships and better project outcomes.
Below, we’ll highlight six ways Jambo can help you with your public consultation!
1. Jambo Gives You Access to the full Engagement History
To build stronger stakeholder and community relationships for better project outcomes, you need to be able to understand the full history of engagement with every individual and group you and your team have engaged, including engagements from recent or concurrent projects.
Having access to a complete history of engagement ensures you and your team understand what’s already been discussed. You can then learn from this history and use it to make any necessary adjustments before your next meetings to focus your messaging to meet individual and community needs, which will help to build more trust in your organization and your project.
Using the bike lane example, if you’re preparing for a meeting with a business owner named Jane Smith, with Jambo, you can quickly click on Jane’s profile to learn everything she already shared with your team. Suppose Jane has previously raised an issue about potentially losing parking spaces in front of her store because of the bike lanes. With this history of engagement, you now understand a topic that’s very important to Jane. With this understanding, you can communicate more intentionally in your next meeting to show her you're listening to her concerns and are committed to finding the best solution possible.
2. Jambo's Detailed Contact Profiles Offer an Easy and Comprehensive Overview
Jambo’s contact profiles help you and your team to answer essential questions about your stakeholders, and the communications had with them and their organizations like:
- What’s the stakeholder’s contact information?
- What’s been discussed, and with whom?
- Have any issues been raised? What is the status of issues (have they been addressed)?
- Were any commitments made? Have commitments been fulfilled?
- What concerns or interests does the stakeholder have?
When it comes to “what’s been discussed,” Jambo allows you to log engagements based on the role an individual holds at the time of engagement. Overtime, engagements within a project or community will often see an individual who may have two stakeholder roles. They might represent a company, board, agency, another organization, or even themselves. Jambo gives you the ability identify who the stakeholder contact was representing at the time of a particular engagement making it simple to understand your history of engagement with individuals as well as any organizations they represent.
For example, Jane Smith might engage with your organization as a local business owner, concerned over how the bike lanes will affect her customer’s ability to park and reach her business. Jane might also engage with your organization as an individual who owns a house nearby and has a more favourable opinion on bike lanes' potential to reduce pollution and vehicle noise around her home. In Jambo, you can record which role Jane is representing each time she engages with your organization and can easily access a full overview of all the logged information related to Jane in her contact profile.
3. Jambo's Easy Task Management Keeps Everyone Accountable and Organized
While your public consultation efforts will inevitably focus on smaller groups and individuals, these engagements can still be complex, risky and time-consuming, so keeping your stakeholder information and your teams organized is vital.
With Jambo’s task management feature, you can assign yourself and your team tasks to help keep everyone collaborating, accountable and focused, moving towards the same goals. Using Jambo’s project dashboard, you can quickly view the tasks assigned to you and monitor your team’s tasks' status or progress.
Any tasks created as part of an engagement are automatically linked back to the associated communication record, which helps provide context. This context makes it easy for your team to understand your organization's engagement with a stakeholder even if they weren’t part of the specific engagement when the task was assigned.
4. Jambo Ensures You Stay on Top of Issues
As you deal with various individuals and groups, you will likely encounter issues throughout your project. While you can resolve some quickly, others may take years to resolve, so you need to ensure you can organize and understand everything. As issues can increase your project risks, there are several issues-focused features in Jambo to ensure you’re always updated and better protected.
With Jambo, you can quickly identify an issue’s impact and priority with the colour-coded materiality matrix and the smart reporting options, so you always know where to focus your resources and which issues are the highest risk. Additionally, issues are also easily searchable in Jambo, allowing users to find any issues associated with specific stakeholders or organizations. You can also use the included issues timeline feature to gain a deeper understanding of a specific issue's history.
You can also simply view a stakeholder’s profile to see any associated issues or commitments (and their status), which will help you and your team be better prepared before meeting with a stakeholder (and avoid getting blindsided).
Regardless of what you’re up against, with Jambo, you’ll have a complete understanding and will be able to work through issues logically and effectively.
Want to learn more about how an SRM helps you to manage stakeholder issues? Check out the blog!
5. Jambo Ensures You Understand Your Commitments and How They Connect to Your Other Project Information
Commitments (or promises) are also common during stakeholder engagement. To ensure you’re updated, in Jambo, you can view commitments across one or all your projects, so you always know which commitments still require attention.
Beyond making sure you can follow through on all commitments, you also want to ensure you understand where they’re coming from, who they’re connected to and any communications associated with them.
Using the bike lane example with Jane, after a phone call with her, you can log into your Jambo account and quickly create a communication record for the interaction you’ve just had, logging it as a phone call (or whatever form the engagement took). If, during the phone call, you’ve agreed to provide some additional signage to help accommodate her safety concerns, you can log this new commitment, and it will remain associated with the created communication record, helping to build context for you and your team.
This ability to connect commitments, issues, areas of interest, personalized notes and attachments to communication records ensures you and your team understand the big picture.
Want to learn more about how an SRM helps you to manage stakeholder commitments? Check out the blog!
6. Jambo Allows You to Easily Map Areas of Interest or Concern
The ability to log geospatial locations, like an area of concern or interest, is another way Jambo helps public consultation.
For example, if Jane Smith raises the issue about the potential loss of parking in front of her store, you can log this issue and mark its location on Jambo’s integrated map. Not only does this map help keep your information organized, but it also creates a visual understanding of your project and what your stakeholders have shared with your teams, which makes your information accessible for more people.
Beyond logging locations within Jambo, you can also easily export geospatial PDFs of your maps to share with stakeholders and decision-makers for greater understanding and project transparency to ensure you make the most of your engagement efforts and work effectively with others.
Share Information About Jambo with Your Teams
Public consultation is essential, as are your relationships with the individuals and organizations you’ll engage. To ensure you’re able to focus on these relationships and engage effectively for better project outcomes, Jambo is the best Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM) tool for the job.
With all your crucial information logged in Jambo, it’s organized, understandable and easy to navigate, so you and your team are quickly informed and updated on everything. With the time you’ll save using our SRM, you and your team are free to focus on engaging more intentionally and building those better relationships, which will become a key focus as you continue your public consultation.
To learn more about Jambo and the features we offer, download our free information brochure to share with your team by clicking the image below!