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Green belt projects improve City services for residents

February 17, 2015 - More than 40 City staff were involved in the latest round of Initiative Management Green Belt projects highlighted Tuesday afternoon, February 17 at a special Kawartha Lakes Council meeting.

To date in 2015, Initiative Management Green Belt teams have helped identify more than $5,000 in hard savings, while also improving processes that resulted in more than $16,000 in productivity savings and $36,000 in cost avoidance.

“Productivity savings are about building capacity,” explained Initiative Management Master Black Belt Sara Beukeboom. “By finding efficiencies in certain areas, we are able to re-allocate staff time to other areas, while cost avoidance is money the City would have to spend, but as a result of the project, those expenses are no longer necessary.”

Among the most recent completed Green Belt projects, City staff worked to:

  • Reduce wait time from intake to determination of eligibility for social services from 4.86 days to 4.0 days.
  • Creating a centralized inventory of housing maintenance supplies to reduce travel time for staff.
  • Delivery of social services and housing services to staff and clients through web GIS services.
  • Design and develop and Economic Development communications calendar to better meet customer needs and provide valuable information.
  • Design and implement a standard, faster, more cost-efficient Provincial Offences Collections process.
  • Improve management of waste diversion programs in order to minimize cost and maximize revenue while maintaining or increasing diversion.

In total, 14 recently-completed Green Belt projects were highlighted during Tuesday’s Council meeting.

“Initiative Management is a tremendous division within the City that is able to utilize very specialized data analytics tools to look at our processes and how we do business,” said Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham. “We have seen great results using Lean Six Sigma tools through both Green Belt and Black Belt projects and recognize the importance of using this program to help find additional future savings.”

“The pot of money to operate the City is only so big and through our Initiative Management division we are able to look at all of our processes and develop ways to improve efficiencies, reduce waste and save money,” Mayor Letham continued. “Utilizing Initiative Management to focus on providing the right services at the right price to our residents and businesses will be the key to financial viability and success for Kawartha Lakes.”

In 2014, the Initiative Management department facilitated the completion of 58 Green Belt projects with overall savings to the corporation of $1,970,251. The projects identified $370,662 in hard dollar savings, with $494,271 in additional future year hard dollar savings. Productivity savings of $269,256 and cost avoidance of $836,062 brought the total to nearly $2 million.

“Our Green Belts and all of our staff have done a tremendous job to look at their operations and how they do business,” said Ms. Beukeboom. “Our staff recognizes that by improving the efficiency of our operations we not only provide a more streamlined and valuable service to our residents and businesses, but we also create greater capacity and financial savings for the entire corporation.”



For more information please contact:
Sara Beukeboom
Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt

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