SA council claims success in online services

TechnologyOne suite to expand at local city council as online services hit it off with developers

The City of Port Adelaide Enfield in South Australia will expand its TechnologyOne suite of software to include the company’s financial and enterprise content management (ECM) portfolio following the successful implementation of development application tracking and other online services for the local council’s 105,000 residents and 7000 businesses.

Over the course of the past year the council has implemented 35 new online services based on the TechnologyOne Property & Rating solution aimed at improving development application tracking for residents and construction companies alike. The city claimed success in the implementation, diverting 25 per cent of development application enquiries to the website while reducing call centre interaction to 3000 enquiries per month and improving response times.

The council also flagged automated processing as a benefit, reducing human error and making data more accurate. Data for the tool is centrally stored at the council, with any exceptions for applications automatically flagged and pushed back to council staff for manual processing.

“As with any new system or process delivering a greater level of transparency to organisational workings, we had some work to do to get everyone comfortable, but primarily this has been an exercise in change management,” the council’s direct of environmental services, Fred Newman, said.

“Building it was only part of the picture. When our development officers saw the system in practice, they immediately started talking about ways it could be used and modified to further improve services.”

Those modifications included ensuring fees wouldn’t have to be paid upfront, publicising the identities of development officers at the council, and ensuring payment information was kept secure and unable to be searched.

Online payments are currently available for residents to pay rates, dog registration and parking fines, while the council also provides online food safety training through its website. Newman indicated the city would look to implement further online services in the future in an attempt to improve efficiency among staff.

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