Blackline Consulting delivers Orangeville’s service review

November 30, 2023   ·   0 Comments


Orangeville has a clearer line toward modernizing its service to best manage future growth.

The municipality partnered with Blackline Consulting to ink an extensive organizational review to ensure the town’s service delivery model is prepared to manage future growth.

John Naas, a partner at Blackline Consulting, shared the review’s final report during council’s Nov. 27 regular meeting.

“It struck me while I was reading it [the report], I was excited to see what you were putting forward,” Deputy Mayor Todd Taylor said. “It makes me very optimistic about what the town can be and how efficient we can become.”

Naas said organizational reviews can cause angst. For that reason, it was important to create a collaborative approach to the review.

“Based on our analysis, it is evident that for the town to efficiently manage growth, it should continue to focus on modernizing how it delivers services through process redesign and technology adoption,” Naas said.

A number of sources were used, he said. One of them was a service profile that was filled in by town staff. Those profiles were then compared to services offered in other municipalities.

Process-shadowing puts consultants in the work environments of town staff. Consultants literally shadowed municipal employees to assess service efficiencies.

Key recommendations in the report include the town developing service level frameworks according to established resident expectations around service and communication, automating and digitizing processes, and developing plans and strategies to guide the town’s future.

According to a press release from the town, the consultants used multiple sources to analyze the organization using a highly collaborative approach.

“The review evaluated services and service levels, assessed the sustainability of the current organizational structure and resources, and developed recommendations to manage growth and achieve greater efficiencies,” according to the media release.

The review identified common practices, key performance indicators, and process improvements. It provided an implementation plan to achieve those recommendations.

The consultants outlined service delivery resources, provided a staffing plan for the next five years, and a methodology to review staff and compensation needs.

“Over the next five years, Orangeville is anticipated to realize modest growth,” Naas said. “Leveraging technology and moving away from manual, paper-based processes will allow the town to maintain current service levels as that growth occurs.”

He said the municipality’s current organizational structure is set up to allow for scaling in the future without any significant restructuring.

“The review process revealed many things that are working well in the organization, including the existing structure and staffing resources,” said David Smith, Orangeville’s CAO. “Now, with the guidance received from Blackline through this review, we’ll move forward with modernization efforts.”

Naas said the town may see slight growth changes in the next five years, and those changes will impact services unequally. That growth will have varied staffing implications.

“Growth isn’t linear,” Naas said. “Especially with inflation and interest rates. It could be a little bit slower, and then come up very quickly.”

Smith said the review was welcomed by municipal staff.

“It was a thoughtful process and, when that process is followed, staff embrace it and senior staff have been,” Smith said. “We welcome it and we will action it.”

“An organization is only as good as the people that it assembles and the guidance that is given to them,” said Councillor Joe Andrews.

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