Phase 1 Summary
What happened over the course of Phase 1?
The objective of Phase 1 for Categorize & Rationalize Services was to collect data on all services provided by all departments. The original scope called for the following steps to occur in order to achieve the phase 1 goal.
- Develop a question set and create a template to disperse to trained team members. The template will be used to collect data on services offered in each department.
- Assign team members to conduct interviews with each department. Select individuals from each department based on Department Head recommendations.
- Organize, format, and review data received from interviews. Submit finalized information to project manager to organize and prepare for phase 2.
After discussions amongst the strategic planning group, it was decided to modify the second step and offer the question set to all employees instead of only offering it to certain employees based on department head recommendations. We thought this would be a necessary modification to capture all the services provided by the Village, and also to make sure every Village employee had the opportunity to have their voice heard.
How was the data gathered?
There was a questionnaire given to all the employees in early October and we requested them to be returned by October 31st. The questionnaire asked for each employee to list any service they provide, and then classify those services into one of the following categories.
- Legally Required
- Sole Source Provider
- Fulfills Basic Need
Any of the items listed that were considered legally required, sole source provider, or fulfills basic need are considered to be a core service. Anything classified as discretionary was grouped together with all other discretionary services. Once the questionnaires were returned, the data was compiled into a spreadsheet which will be used for all future phases.
What are the results?
One of the risks that the group identified at the planning stages was a lack of employee buy-in which could reduce the number of questionnaires filled out. Luckily, this was not the case. There were a total of 117 questionnaires handed out to all employees, and 89 were returned back to our strategic plan group. The majority of the employees who did not return the questionnaire are a part of a Department that has multiple employees doing the same or similar tasks. This gave the group assurance that a large enough sampling to be able to analyze and move on to future phases.
Another risk that was identified at the beginning of phase one was the possibility of employees listing tasks they complete rather than services as a whole. This risk became a reality as the majority of the returned questionnaires included mostly tasks. In order to combat this outcome, it was necessary to meet with the department heads and supervisors in order to classify these tasks into their correct service.
In addition to collecting and gathering data on core and discretionary services, the team also did research on other municipalities or taxing bodies who may have done a similar project. The purpose of this was to see if there were any tactics or models the group could use for any further phases. It was determined that this type of project is either not very common, or other municipalities do not publish their outcomes on their website. A few examples of municipalities that have completed a project similar to this are:
- Oshawa, Canada
- Sparks, NV
- Brownsburg, IN
- Nanaimo, Canada
76% of questionnaires handed out to employees were returned.
The majority of the returned questionnaires included mostly task-level items instead of services.
Comparative research found few tactics or models to use as examples.
What is the next step?
The group will be starting phase 2 which includes analyzing, categorizing, and prioritizing core and discretionary services using the criteria set in the strategic plan.