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This paper tells the story and highlights of moving to a team-oriented environment.

The Treatment Services Division (TSD) of the Water Treatment Department of Colorado Springs Utilities has achieved substantial cost savings during the past five years. Many of these savings were a direct result of the TOAT program. By 1997, yearly costs were already reduced by 1.8 million. These yearly cost savings have continued, and have increased to savings of 2.1million yearly. Additionally, a number of one-time savings and cost avoidances have been achieved by the TSD staff. As an example, TSD estimates savings of nearly 1.5 million in 1999. These savings were achieved through a variety of methods, including reducing overtime, using fewer vehicles, and reduced chemical and electrical costs. Employees feel responsible for bringing a “business” perspective to their work. These results could not have been achieved without the involvement of all employees in TSD, and teamwork environment that has taken root.

Building a team-based culture has been both challenging and rewarding. Some of the highlights of our experiences address the importance of leadership and management, the key role of communications, how to focus on getting results, and the need for clarity of roles.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2000

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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