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Engaging residents and employees in their city’s future

The City of Corona Achieved


increase in citizen engagement


insights for downtown revitalization


increase in employee satisfaction


Established in 1886, the City of Corona is a historic city that was in need of a refresh. Faced with the challenges of revitalizing the city’s downtown area, redesigning the city’s branding and reinvigorating work processes, Corona’s IT department saw an opportunity to use technology to bring citizen and employee voices to the table. Their goal was to ensure that everyone — not just the vocal few — had a say in key decisions.

How to reach the silent majority

In an effort to improve representation and quality of life city-wide, the City of Corona implemented a system of action for collecting robust feedback from both residents and employees and making data-driven decisions. The city’s IT department started with themselves by surveying employees about tech resources and making improvements that led to a 28% increase in employee satisfaction with IT. Further insights and improvements to the employee experience, such as the implementation of a four-day work week, have led to reduced attrition and an increased sense of fulfillment.

Expanding this technology-enabled approach to citizen feedback, the city sought input on how to enhance the city’s downtown area, which had grown stagnant during the pandemic, and how to update the city’s branding so it would feel fresh and relevant to today’s residents. Traditional engagement methods, such as in-person meetings, were limited and only reached a small portion of the population.

Corona employed Qualtrics’ AI capabilities to first understand what residents were saying about the city on social media platforms. Then the city’s IT team developed omnichannel programs to reach populations that were underrepresented in decision-making, with opportunities for residents to submit feedback via social media, the website, digital surveys, texting and location-based QR codes at events and concerts. They integrated citizen input with GIS location points to analyze variations in experiences and ensure representation across the city.

Acting on feedback

By leveraging innovative tools and techniques, the City of Corona saw a 10x increase in citizen feedback, which means more citizens had their voices represented in decisions impacting their experiences in the city. With insights from thousands of residents, the City of Corona focused planning for the downtown revitalization and rebranding projects on the key elements that matter most to residents.

“It’s critical to show residents the results of that information so that they see the work is actually getting done and that their voice means something,” said Chris McMasters, Chief Information Officer at the City of Corona.

“We’re hearing, we’re listening to what they want. And then we’re actually implementing the changes that they’re requesting,” said Kyle Edgeworth, Deputy Chief Information Officer at the City of Corona.

Improving digital journeys

The City of Corona continues to push for improvements to the citizen experience, experimenting with new ways to enhance digital properties and streamline processes.

With Qualtrics’ Digital Experience Analytics (DXA), the City of Corona used insights to shape its new website rollout, ensuring that it meets the needs of their residents. The City of Corona used DXA features such as rage click tracking and session replay to identify and fix problems that otherwise would have gone unnoticed, like a broken drop-down menu where many residents were getting stuck on the permit application page.

Digging deeper into the permitting process, the City of Corona is focused on understanding and optimizing journeys and processes that have been the source of citizen frustration in the past. With Qualtrics’ Customer Journey Optimizer (CJO), the City of Corona is analyzing the process for applying online and physically for city permits for land use, construction and more. This is enabling the City of Corona to zero in on key journey pain points leading to drop offs from online permit applications, and then explore ways to use CJO to orchestrate interactions and optimize processes to increase revenue, reduce friction, increase self-service, and reduce the cost to serve.

Chris McMasters

Chris McMasters

Chief Information Officer, City of Corona

“How do we engage this population to have them be a part of how we govern the city? And how do we determine what comes next for the city and its services and if we're doing a good job? Qualtrics became a critical component of how we touch and reach those people, how we engage with them, and then how we further services within the city.”

The City of Corona is located in Southern California and has a diverse population of more than 160,000 residents, with over 500 municipal employees who maintain public services. Established in 1886, the city has a rich history and features an old downtown center. Scenic surroundings, beautiful parks, excellent schools, and a thriving business district add to this vibrant community.




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