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5 Government Relations Best Practices for Managing Your COVID-19 Response

by FiscalNote Team, FiscalNote

Here are 5 best practices you can implement today to help ensure your team has the right information at the right time in the weeks and months to come.

We know the COVID-19 pandemic is making the world feel more uncertain than ever. It’s also making the work of government relations professionals more important than ever.

With more than 400 COVID-19 bills introduced in the U.S. alone, not to mention all the actions taken by the EU Commission, and in each of the 27 member states, there’s a lot to monitor, let alone proactively respond to, provide guidance on, and keep your team aligned around.

FiscalNote was created to help organizations manage risk and uncertainty, and we’re here to help as your work becomes more critical than ever.

Here are 5 best practices you can implement today to help ensure your team has the right information at the right time in the weeks and months to come:

1) Centralize Your Information

Whether you’re managing tax implications, trade and tariff issues, or supply chain challenges, it’s all hands on deck as you work to future proof your business and organize strategic communications both within and outside your organization. And many hands often means data stored in a number of places, managed by various teams.

Ensure all of your policy documents, talking points, and stakeholder information are in a unified location to enable effective collaboration.

In FiscalNote, you can use Issue Pages to organize all of your critical information in one location for easy access by all team members.

Making the best decisions for your organization, and effectively carrying out your crisis response plans, necessitates alignment first and foremost – especially in today’s remote work environment.

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2) Set up Targeted Alerts

Now that the U.S. stimulus package has passed, the activity around COVID-19 in the United States will be moving to the regulatory agencies and the states. That’s a lot to monitor, on top of the issues you’re already managing.

Ensure you cut through the noise by setting up highly targeted alerts for new legislative and regulatory activities for each issue you’re managing.

The ability to customize your alerts to just the issues you care about will be key to ensuring you don’t miss a thing.

FiscalNote clients can work with our team to help you customize your Discovery Alerts so you get the right information at the right time without sifting through extraneous information.

3) Get Just the News that Matters

Each day there is a constant influx of new and often contradictory information flooding your news feeds, but you don’t have to drink from the firehose.

Set up a system so that everyone on your team is getting the same, trusted news, and share it in a central location so you’re all working from a single source of truth.

In FiscalNote, you can view a running feed of all news links uploaded to the platform and tag relevant articles to your specific issue pages, so you and your team can skip to the most important updates.

4) Set Up Reporting

We know that most government affairs teams are working on 5–6 issues at any given time, and with COVID-19, you’ve just added a big new one. Reporting has become key and clients are saying they’ve added multiple reports just on COVID-19 to their weekly tallies.

But no matter how busy your team is during this time, it’s critical to take the time to set up reporting so you can provide visibility to internal stakeholders and enable key decision-makers.

Reports should include the latest policy documents available, relevant news alerts, and details on all the actions your team has taken for or against the issue, including stakeholders you’ve met with, emails you’ve sent, etc. Those insights will help your organization quickly get up to speed on the fast-changing policy landscape and enable your team to formulate response plans.

Reporting on your activities and the latest information available is easy and fast in FiscalNoteYou can provide visibility into the latest actions and policy updates and add in all your own and other stakeholders notes with just a click of a button.

5) Track Stakeholder Activities

In-person meetings have ceased, but your efforts haven’t. Be sure to document phone calls, emails, and other activities so you can quantify your efforts and provide visibility in this remote work environment.

It’s best if your colleagues are tracking their actions in the same way, in the same location, so you can ensure you’re taking advantage of shared connections and avoiding duplicative outreach.

FiscalNote allows you and your colleagues to manage your stakeholders as part of a broader network so you can see and manage how all of your stakeholders – internal team members, lawmakers, staffers, the public or other organizations – intersect.

Final Thoughts:

Lastly, we encourage you to bookmark FiscalNote's Coronavirus Updates & Resource Center for a consolidated source of trusted information including timely news articles, webinars, and best practice resources to help you navigate your organization through the pandemic. You can also watch our on-demand webinar discussing the possible road to recovery for the European Union and the implications for the international business community.

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