Applying High-Performance Organization Concepts To Your Public Works Department

Applying High-Performance Organization Concepts To Your Public Works Department

The HPO framework is not a set of instructions or a recipe that can be followed blindly. Rather it is a framework that has to be translated by managers to their specific organizational situation in their current time, by designing a specific variant of the framework fit for their organization.

Does Size Matter For Public Works Directors? Is There A Leadership Difference Between A Large Organization And A Smaller One?

A public works organization’s size can vary from a two-member person agency to one like Los Angeles County, with nearly 4,000 members.

Using Technology And Best Business Practices To Make The Best Use Of Resources And Save Public Dollars

Creating long-term efficiencies and sustainability is a huge focus of today’s government sector.  Every day the charge of Public Works’ leaders is to do more, with less. Further, technology, if used correctly, can be an effective tool for organizing work and cutting costs. 

Public Works and Ethics Go Hand In Hand

Ethical behavior helps us live and work in a civil society. Human nature dictates that we act in our own self-interest in most circumstances unless we feel a moral obligation to others or society. Today's society promotes a "me first" mentality. Citisens expect public works officials to be watchful and careful with the resources entrusted to them. How can we create an environment that will encourage ethical behavior in the public works sector?

Getting Maintenance Work Done: In-House or By Others

The main objective for any Public Works department is to cost-effectively optimize resources - these include employees equipment, materials, contracts, and physical assets. Orange County, California has successfully used various maintenance and operations service providers, including a combination of in-house/force accounts, outsourcing, job order contracting, and incarcerated labor.

Asset Inspections Are Optimal Tool For Maintenance And Capital Improvement

Infrastructure asset inspection process is a tool that identifies deficiencies, creates backlog, establishes proactive maintenance, and monitors life cycles; as well as assists agencies in identifying projects for their Capital Improvement Program (CIP). These inspections can provide both a short-term benefit through work identification for repair and maintenance efforts and a long-term benefit of project identification of new capital improvements and enhancement.

Please Step Away From That Truck

A comprehensive fleet assessment and improvement program initiated for the Volusia County Public Works Department has resulted in annual savings of hundreds of thousands of dollars without impacting workloads. One of the biggest opportunities is optimizing your equipment needs and keeping equipment resources that add value.

Administering FEMA Requirements Doesn't Need to be a Disaster

Volusia County in northeast Florida has experienced a number of emergency events in recent years such as flooding, wind damage and beach erosion, many of which have been declared a federal disaster. This article outlines the process by which Volusia County has met federal reporting requirements and provides specific guidelines for other public agencies and municipalities.

Article: Agencies Can Save Dollars By Using Technology And Best Business Practices

Independent of any specific software system, public agency improvements can be implemented using a systematic process of incorporating technology with best business practices. This article describes the successes of two Florida Counties evaluation to determine areas for improvement within their Public Works Departments, then taking action with the resulting transformations being documented.

Software Systems Improve Wastewater Collection

Through a combination of technology and business processes, West Valley Sanitation District (WVSD), Santa Clara County, Calif., sought to improve its wastewater collection system operations. The effort ranged from streamlining work practices to using advanced technology such as a complete computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) with geographical information system (GIS) connectivity and closed circuit television (CCTV) data linked to a new maintenance system to develop routine schedules, track work, and improve operations.

Management System Helps Streamline Sewer Maintenance

The West Valley Sanitation District in Santa Clara County, CA, has improved collection system operations through the use of new technologies and improved business processes. The effort included evaluating work flow, determining operational improvements, developing a performance-based budget, and implementing multiple best business practices/strategies.

Preventive Maintenance programs keep your bridges open for years to come

Bridges are intricate structures with structural, mechanical, electrical and civil components. The structures, whether fixed or movable facilities, require regular preventive maintenance to remain in optimal operational condition. This discusion outlines how two counties—one in California and one in Florida—have implemented an organized approach to successfully accomplish their regular preventive bridge maintenance.

Orange Whip

In 1982, Orange County's Public Works Department developed an automated Pavement Management System (PMS). This outlines the 20 years of system utilization. The systems objectives were: (1) develop an objective, systematic methodology for determining roadway conditions and defining rehabilitation strategies for all streets and highways within unincorporated Orange County, Calif., and (2) establish a process where a preventative mode of maintenance work is planned and performed for the entire Orange County roadway system. The county had to plan and optimize expenditures better because of population growth, accompanying traffic and an increase in volume and magnitude of heavy vehicles.

CMMS Selection Success

A properly implemented computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is a powerful management tool. Maintenance and engineering managers can use it to justify resources and activities, as well as to document work history. But managers also might need to implement a CMMS to comply with federal, state or local mandates, follow the results of internal or external audits, justify resources, or establish an automated management system.