TECHNICAL COMMITTEE NEWS

Continuous improvement continues

Ann Daniels
Director of Technical Services
APWA Kansas City Office

Interest in the Self-Assessment and Accreditation program using the text Public Works Management Practices Manual, Fourth Edition, is continuing to grow and requests for information are coming in every day.

Do your chapter members know about these programs? Can you explain them? Would you like to know more?

We recently completed the "Self Assessment: Using the Management Practices Manual" workshop in Hillsborough County, Florida with our largest attendance to date. Over fifty public works staff members participated from Florida, California, Texas, Maine, Illinois, and Oklahoma.

The workshops are designed to provide detailed information and instruction on the process of conducting Self-Assessment in your local agency. Limited discussion is provided on the process of achieving Accreditation if the agency wishes to take that next step.

The next Self-Assessment Workshop is scheduled for April 16 in Bettendorf, Iowa. Registrations are still being accepted and may be made online at www.apwa.net/Education/. Scroll down to the appropriate highlighted area for the workshop.

A moment from the City of Bellevue, Washington, Accreditation process. From left: John Ostrowski, Management Consultant, Vancouver, Washington; Lloyd Martin, Director of Utilities (retired), Bellevue, Washington; and Jack Pittis, Director of Public Works (retired), City of Port Angeles, Washington, and Director, APWA Region IX

The workshops are now being conducted at a public works agency that has either already been accredited or is going through the process now. Presentations are made by the local agency participants on how they have organized their teams, what issues they have faced, and how they are progressing. Opportunities for questions are frequent and past participants report finding this much superior to the previous "lecture" style sessions.

If your chapter would like to host a presentation at your annual meeting about these programs, please contact Ann Daniels at adaniels@apwa.net.

Plans are now being made for the locations for the coming fiscal year's workshops. If your chapter or a local agency would like to host a workshop, please discuss this with Ann as well. With the strong interest being shown in California, it appears that at least one and possibly two will be held there in the coming fiscal year, and one will definitely be held in the Northeast. At least one more could be scheduled, in addition to the normal pre-Congress session to be held in Minneapolis in September.

Many agencies are seeking ways to improve and organize their operations. With the impending glut of retirements, now, more than ever, is this need an important one. Please share this information and encourage your members to acquaint themselves with the program and to determine whether it can be beneficial to them.

Ann Daniels can be reached at (800) 848-APWA or at adaniels@apwa.net.