Case study:

Palmerston NT

Palmerston Council-Building.jpg

Council profile

The second largest city in the Northern Territory, located 20kms from Darwin, the City of Palmerston is a young, vibrant regional hub, with a diverse community of 30,000 residents and a fast-growing future.

Palmerston is currently undergoing a significant period of infrastructure growth and development, with Council adopting a detailed master plan for the city centre to be rolled out over the next 20 years, and a projected population of 44,000 by 2025.

The challenge

At the time that their rate payer expectations increased, the City of Palmerston’s budget became tighter. There was increased pressure to do more with limited resources. Their constituents were demanding improved services, better communications and lower rates. Simultaneously, the council was obliged to address rising mandates for fiscal accountability and compliance, imposed by government regulations.

Their proprietary system was inflexible and processes were siloed, making it very difficult for decision makers to locate up-to-date information. Regulatory reporting was time consuming as information had to be drawn from incompatible systems. Data integration was challenging and was managed manually, with significant error rates.

The aging system was becoming expensive and cumbersome. Council resources were being focussed on IT at a time when they were required to meet constituents’ demands.

The City of Palmerston’s key objectives were to refocus resources and activities on service delivery and improvements for their rate payers and communities.

To succeed, they wanted to take advantage of new technologies to achieve better efficiencies and deliver improved community services. The council also wanted to improve their procurement processes and regulatory reporting, and gain better internal control.

The solution

CouncilFirst offered an integrated, modern and easy to use system that met all of Palmerston’s needs, with improved management of financials, procurement, project job costing, customer requests, payroll and property and rating. The ability to report in real-time improved visibility of the council activities, with better KPI management and reporting for compliance.

The impact

The City of Palmerston has achieved a 3 percent increase in their bottom line.

  • Automated reporting has saved significant staff time, with more reliable and accurate report results.
  • Infringements, timesheets, job workflow and regulatory applications are now paperless, automated and accessible through mobility devices.
  • Improved procurement, billing and accounts receivable processes result in quicker approvals, tighter security, more proficient generation of revenues and better management of cash flow.
  • Customer requests are being better managed, enabling improved response to resolve requests, complaints and issues.
  • IT costs have been dramatically reduced.
  • Mobilisation of their staff has boosting productivity in all areas of the business and saved substantial time.
  • Resources are better allocated to priority areas.
CouncilFirst massively improved our procurement processes, and saved a significant amount of staff time, while affording us greater internal control.