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This Startup Uses Tech to Help Congressional Staff Book Tours of D.C.


CTA Staff

After working in D.C. as a Congressional staffer, the creator of TourTrackr knew that technology could help innovate the way Congressional offices operate. TourTrackr is a digital tool that allows staffers to book tours of D.C.

We had a chance to speak with the TourTrackr Team - Melissa Medina (CEO & Co-Founder), Neil Bell (CTO & Co-Founder), Eric Thomas (Development Lead) and Alex Tsao (User Experience Lead), about how TourTrackr first began and what’s next for the company.

How did TourTrackr first begin? What problem were you trying to solve?

As a former Congressional staffer, I booked tours of Washington D.C. manually. Think excel spreadsheets, three-ring binders, word documents and calendar invites. Fast forward seven years later, I returned to Capitol Hill after getting my MBA to find that Congressional staff were still booking tours manually!

Booking tours is burdensome and complex. After hearing staffers pain points about the tour system, I thought to myself, there has got to be a better way. The current methods were inefficient. Almost every office books tours, yet there was no digital tool to automate the process.

The solution - TourTrackr, a digital platform that makes it easy to manage D.C. tour requests. Overall, our goal is to enhance the constituent service experience and improve Congressional Office operations using technology.

Tell us about the technology behind TourTrackr and how it works.

TourTrackr is built on Bootstrap v4 with jQuery, on a proven LAMP architecture, using industry best practices to provide resiliency and data security. This combination enables TourTrackr’s compliance with current NIST security standards while providing a modern user experience to which Capitol Hill staffers are accustomed.
 
How does your technology help your customers?

TourTrackr’s technology automates the manual process of managing D.C. tour requests. It saves time, reduces human error and automates the email itineraries sent to constituents.
 
What is next for TourTrackr?

Growth! As we recently launched TourTrackr, we hope to get as many Members of Congress using this new feature. Ultimately, our goal is to innovate the way Congress operates. Our hope is to reduce the time spent on administrative tasks so staff can focus on what they came to Washington to do - work on policy.


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