Salisbury enhances organisational management

The City of Salisbury in South Australia has endorsed a self managed team approach aimed at achieving organisational and customer service benefits in processing development applications.

A Development Services Team comprising 12 employees was established. The team approach was researched, devised, created and implemented by Council staff in association with change management consultants.

Objectives of the project were to reduce costs to business and industry, stimulate investment and economic development in the City of Salisbury, achieve best practice in organisational procedures and create a customer focused development approval system within the Planning and Building Division.

“Success has been based largely on the comprehensive nature of the review process, which looked at every aspect of the approval procedure to identify opportunities for performance improvement,” said Greg Waller, Director of Development and Environmental Services. “By reviewing existing work practices and exploring alternatives, the Team, in conjunction with management, developed and implemented performance improvement strategies to achieve best practice in procedures and customer relations.”

Through the business process review, SWOT analysis, customer surveys, a workshop and target setting, the Development Services Team developed a business plan that has achieved remarkable results for the Council and developers seeking to invest in the region.

Less time is wasted on ineffective and inefficient processing. The processing time for development applications has been reduced from 12.7 days to 3.3 days.

This turnaround was achieved with no increase in staff, while, at the same time, an increase in development applications. Customer satisfaction has risen from a rating of 40 percent in 1996 to 86 percent in 2000.

Similarly, developers have benefited through quicker and more professional decision making processes. This has enhanced the image of the Council and the region as a progressive place in which to invest. Further benefits are expected in terms of stronger partnerships and growth opportunities with the building industry creating local investment and employment.

For further information, please contact Greg Waller, telephone (08) 8406 8209.