The Village of Woodridge had multiple challenges with maintaining their meter inventory and updating meter information on utility accounts. The entire process was time consuming and manual requiring an average of 150 hours of staff time, nearly 4 weeks, per year to maintain the multiple systems.
Meter information for the Village’s 9,800 meters was recorded and updated in three separate systems by different staff members resulting in a triplication of work effort and posed a risk of error. When meters were moved from inventory to active use on accounts, a two part form was used by field workers to handwrite the meter and read information. The meter information was then recorded in the utility billing program by the Finance Department staff which required manual entry and posed a risk of error from interpretation of the handwritten information. Public Works staff also had the challenge of maintaining the active system as there was a risk for misfiling information or duplicate active meter records for a single account.
Baecore Group met with the Utility Billing and Public Works teams to identify all of their existing processes for managing meter inventory, tracking meters in use, installing new meters and exchanging meters on existing accounts. Based on the high level of manual effort required and the need for multiple departments to use and rely on the meter information, Baecore identified areas within the utility billing system to complete the tracking and use of meters incorporating automation available within the system.
Baecore developed processes that consolidated the information into a single system, eliminated the duplicate entry and automated the process for creating work orders, meter exchanges, installations, and updating the utility account.
Shifted staff activities from external manual tracking of meter information into a consolidated system saved staff hours of manual data entry and triplication of work. The reduced amount of manual entry reduced the risk of error, improved the accuracy of meter information and had the knock on effect of saving staff time on service orders and utility bill processing.
With the completion of an assessment of all processes for managing meter inventory, tracking meters in use, and completion of swaps on utility accounts, a streamlined process was designed that used system automations to reduce entry, eliminate manual processes and improve overall accuracy and access to information.
Process improvements and system automation provided the opportunity to eliminate 5 manual processes previously used to assign, complete and record each meter change out. These improvements increased staff ease of use, reduced the time required from initial assignment to completion and increased the accuracy of information used by both Public Works and Utility Billing personnel.
Work Reduction 107 hrs/yr - 2.7 weeks of personnel time saved
We are dedicated to bringing the productivity tools of big business to local government. Find out how we can provide your tailored solution.