Since September 1994, the Town of Ajax had been looking to improve its productivity and customer satisfaction. Every employee of the Town Government was challenged to come up with ideas to cut costs, without cutting service levels, or reducing staff, in the STAR$ program (Saving Town of Ajax Real Dollar$).
The Town of Ajax decided that they wanted to adopt a new strategy to strengthen the organization and proactively approach business. To maintain ISO 9001 standards, Ajax needed a new solution for good document control, process control and implementing processes. They also needed a system to capture processes, policies, record results and reduce paper flow.
The Town of Ajax found the solution that met their requirements with AMANDA Permitting software from CSDC. In 1999, the Town implemented AMANDA to automate business permitting and track the development application approval processes for their Planning and Development Services, Fire, Finance, Clerks, Parks and Rec and Transit departments.
Individuals, teams and departments were incentivised to find solutions. Many ideas were generated, and customer service improved. As a result of the success, which saved costs in excess of $1.5 million by the end of 1995, the Town decided to increase its commitment to customer service.
During the spring of 1996, the Town decided to strengthen the organization and proactive approach to doing business, introducing ISO 9001. To maintain the standards demanded by ISO 9001, Ajax needed to implement good document control, process control, and maintain quality records. Any quality system relies heavily on the organization’s ability to document its processes and policies as well as record and measure the results of implementing those processes. Information systems need to capture processes, policies, record results and reduce paper flow.
In 1999 the Town of Ajax implemented AMANDA to track all aspects of the development application approval process. Four different departments (Planning and Development Services, Fire, Finance, and Clerks), in three separate locations, currently use the software. Two more departments (Parks and Recreation Services, and Transit) will be added for responding to circulation of permits and planning approvals.
AMANDA smoothly integrated into the ISO 9001 Standard Operating Procedures. AMANDA provides auditors with an instant access to account of the building and planning approval process in Ajax. The software tracks policy dates as well as scheduled and actual dates.
The Town of Ajax uses AMANDA to provide quick responses to complaints, important for ISO certification.
The system allows the employees to effectively manage workload as well as enter, track and ensure follow-up on complaints, violations and orders issued under the Building Code Act. The system eliminates the requirement for paper for most applications, permits, inspection cards and copies of applications.
Using the AMANDA system, the town plans to link its website with the information in AMANDA. Through this citizens and builders will be able to access the current and accurate information whenever needed. This helps the Town of Ajax’s goal of improved service at a lower cost.