Out of toilet paper? Spot a broken light? Text email@example.com
The Facilities Management Customer Service Center at Western Washington University started a new service system April 8 that allows students, faculty, staff and visitors to report non-emergency maintenance issues to Facilities Management by texting firstname.lastname@example.org.
People can put the email address where they usually put a phone number, and then text about the non-emergency issue to it. They can also send photos. After it receives texts, FM fixes problems right away or forwards them to the appropriate place to take care of them.
“We wanted to find the easy way for them (students and faculties and visitors) to notify us of important things without having to go through all the systems to find out how to get hold of us,” said Jamie Granger, a supervisor in Facilities Management. “ We want to find every way we can that entice them to use our service.”
This system is for non-emergency issues, Granger said, such as broken lights, desks or doors or bathrooms that are out of toilet paper. Water leaking on the floor and blazing fires are emergency issues; people can call 360-650-3420 or the University Police Department at 360-650-3555 in those cases.
The new service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Facilities Management is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and will take care of issues first thing in the morning.
Elizabeth Goplerud, fiscal tech lead in Facilities Management, said that because people aren’t sure what problem situations and equipment are called even when they find problems, they might not report to Facilities Management about issues. However, in this service what people need to do is just take a picture with location information and send to email@example.com. People don’t need to know what it’s called and whom they need to tell.
“We are going to get a lot of things that people may have just ignored before because it’s too big of a hassle to try to figure out who to tell,” Goplerud said. “We are going to have better and more feedback about things, so we could keep up on things better, too. That’s going to be really helpful.”
Before this system, people needed to find a phone on campus and call to Facility Management, or fill out some paper. Facility Management has received feedback from students that the old way was hard to tell problems to it.
“They can still have old ways, but they now have another option,” Granger said.
Goplerud said many posters are up around campus with the address, so people can find the address easily.