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Author's profile photo Meg Kuang

SAP Analytics Tells The Story of New York City In Lockdown

In times of uncertainty, densely-populated locations such as New York City are experiencing an adjustment to a completely different way of life since the statewide lockdown took effect. The NYC 311 call-center is the city’s non-emergency hotline, whose call data can effectively illustrate the story of New York City’s lifestyle changes – and even more interestingly, the things that people are focusing their attention on.

The SAP team took initiative to analyze millions of lines of NYC 311 call data to extract insights and trends that show the changes that took place pre-COVID versus now. SAP Analytics Cloud successfully turned the data into a story, which was then pitched to various news outlets and told through an article on Fortune Magazine.

As the Fortune Magazine article is gated to paying readers, I will summarize the findings below.

In late March, New York’s 311 hotline received its first complaint about someone not adhering to social distancing rules, and since then, has been the fastest-growing source of complaints. From March 28th to April 23rd, 17,682 calls were related to social-distancing incompliance.

However, the largest source of complaints came from loud music/partying from residences from the period of March 1st to April 23rd, likely tied to the overall increased irritability experienced by New Yorkers. At the same time, retail stores-related complaints experienced a 12-fold increase from January/February to March/April, likely traced to the frantic stock-up for retail items such as hand sanitizers, disinfectant wipes, masks, and food.

On the other hand, the biggest declines in complaints were related to illegal parking, blocked driveways, and missed garbage collections, likely given the parking restrictions and rules placed on the city, and the dramatic decrease in number of people going out-and-about.

This gives a bigger-picture overview on the impact of lockdown measures on one of busiest cities in the world.

Many thanks goes to the SAP pre-sales team, public relations team, and Analytics marketing team for making this achievement possible. It’s empowering to see SAP’s technology illustrate a story and bring about clarity in this time.

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