The Regional Command Center receives data gathered by volunteers using the Counting Us app and displays the results as they change throughout the count. The designated Count Administrators are able to use the built-in maps, dashboards, lists, and reports to monitor the incoming data, collaborate with volunteers to address data quality issues, and produce the HUD Point in Time Report.
The Command Center contains key features to prepare for, manage, and finalize the count!
Preparing for the count...
- The unique "Set Up Key" can be defined. By simply entering in this key, the surveys and settings within the Counting Us app will be automatically configured for the user!
- Custom "shape files" define the boundaries of the region on the interactive map, and the ability to layer geographic regions within an area.
- Count teams can be established and designated to a region, and volunteers can be associated to these teams. Volunteers will see the region(s) they are assigned to within the Counting Us app.
- Organizations and projects that do not participate in the region's Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) can be added to the command center so that surveys can be conducted for them using the Counting Us app.
Managing the count...
- A real-time display of all incoming surveys and tallies in both list and map view. Regional count administrators can use these tools to validate the incoming submissions, guide count volunteers, and edit the data as needed.
- Admins have the option to modify the map view to show or hide various attributes.
- Map views can be layered by county, city/town, or zip code.
- A dashboard summarizes key information, such as the total number counted, as well as demographics, including: age, gender, and veteran status.
- Drilldown features from the dashboard allow data cleanup in real time.
- GPS locations collected from the various mobile devices allow surveys to be associated with the HUD Continuum of Care, as well as other region types, such as counties and cities. This level of detail allows multiple regions to host a single count effort, yet have the data assigned to the correct region for reporting.
- Tools to update and archive survey records as need be ensure the data is ready for reporting.
- The ability to filter the list view, and export data, based on the filters that have been applied.
Finalizing the count...
- Generate Point in Time Summary Reports for both the unsheltered and sheltered homeless populations. The reports meet HUD requirements, can be generated with just a couple of clicks, and contain drill-down logic to make it easy to see which records contribute to each report figure.
- The sheltered report can be filtered by project to report on the Housing Inventory Chart.
- Data can be exported so that it can be further analyzed using tools such as Tableau and Excel.
- Filters can be applied to allow for reports to be run for just a particular subpopulation (i.e. veterans, gender), and the maps can be used to report over a sub-region within the Continuum of Care.
Check out this Learning Lab to hear count administrators from CT, VA, and TX share how they use the tools within the Command Center to support the planning, management, and finalization of their PIT counts.
This YouTube playlist contains training videos for Count Administrators on how to use Counting Us and the Command Center to do everything from plan for the PIT Count, track responses in real time, to cleaning up data and reporting.