Skip to main content

We've Downsized, Benchmarked, Reengineered, Other (Pick One), We've Reduced Unit Staff Levels By 30%, Now What?

Buy Article:

$9.50 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Or sign up for a free trial

During the 1990s, large municipal wastewater utilities reduced staffing levels by 30% (source: AMSA surveys 1990, 1993, 1996 and 1999). Much of the efficiency improvement activity was a reaction to privatization pressures – the number of contract operated plants increased by a factor of five during the '90s. Most of the utilities that improved achieved their reduced staffing levels by doing the same few things:

Implementing SCADA

Moving towards preventive and predictive maintenance

Minimizing Off Shift Staffing

Combining Operations and light maintenance

Outsourcing non-core activities

Improved procurement

Many of these improvements were one time events. Now that privatization pressures have eased there are signs that that the pace of efficiency efforts has significantly abated. However, pressures to continue making improvements will not stop, particularly after 9/11. 9/11 has hurt the economy and increased costs for utilities and the governments that own a large percentage of the wastewater utilities, a poor environment in which to raise rates.

This paper addresses the potential for additional efficiency improvements. Most utilities can continue to improve operations and maintenance (O&M) efficiency, but major efficiency improvements are available in capital (planning, engineering and construction) and support services.

Most importantly, this paper will address what today's utility needs to do to continuously improve and to avoid the biggest pitfall facing utilities in the coming decade.
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-01-01

More about this publication?
  • 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 These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

    A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation includes access to most papers presented at the annual WEF Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC) and other conferences held since 2000. Subscription access begins 12 months after the event and is valid for 12 months from month of purchase. A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is included in Water Environment Federation (WEF) membership.

    WEF Members: Sign in (right panel) with your IngentaConnect user name and password to receive complimentary access. Access begins 12 months after the conference or event
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Membership Information
  • About WEF Proceedings
  • WEFTEC Conference Information
  • Learn about the many other WEF member benefits and join today
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more