Council leaves paper in the past

Thursday, 14 March, 2024 | Supplied by: TechnologyOne

Council leaves paper in the past

Newcastle City Council has transitioned from a cumbersome, paper-based timesheet system to a digital solution by TechnologyOne, making a big saving on time, money and paper in the process.

The council has about 1200 staff members who serve more than 170,000 residents. With a strong environmental track record — becoming one of the first local governments in New South Wales to make the switch to 100% renewable electricity — it aims to use digital transformation to improve livability, sustainability and economic diversity.

Newcastle opted for TechnologyOne’s CiA platform, which removed the need for direct server connectivity so that the council could fully harness TechnologyOne’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution.

“Our CiA platform sets our customers up for the future by allowing them to work seamlessly, anywhere, anytime, from any device,” said Loretta Libke, local government expert at TechnologyOne. “It’s all about giving our customers the ability to do their day-to-day tasks in one single, intuitive interface.”

Alicia Lopez, Chief Information Officer at the City of Newcastle, said that one of the biggest benefits the council will see from its digital transformation is its environmental impact.

“We expect to save approximately 12 tonnes of paper a year by moving to automated Accounts Payable, equating to one billion litres of water saved,” she said.

Newcastle’s previous labour-intensive, paper-based payroll system was not only environmentally wasteful but prone to errors.

“Staff were manually filling out timesheets, scanning them and emailing them to payroll. Some even had to drive timesheets to various office locations. It was highly inconvenient,” said David Clarke, Executive Director of Corporate Services at City of Newcastle.

The new system replaces paper-based timesheets with digitised versions, giving council team members more time in their day to deliver for Newcastle’s residents and visitors. This means more field workers available to meet work orders, more office workers to deliver pet registration and more traffic workers on the street to get transport moving.

“Now timesheets are all digital, about 80% of that manual repetitive data entry work will disappear and our team will be able to pivot to do more value-adding work,” Clarke said.

“Historically, much of our reporting was manual. With TechnologyOne’s CiA platform, we have immediate access to vital information, giving managers a real-time view of operational costs and enabling more accurate decision-making. We’re excited about the journey ahead.”

The council will continue its digital transformation by migrating additional TechnologyOne products to the CiA platform throughout 2024.

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