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St. George Energy Services reaches 98% reliability on utility delivery with digital workflow

St. George Energy Services

St. George, UT

As the fastest growing city in Utah, St. George has a lot of utility needs to keep up with. Their energy department previously used paper-based processes in inventory management, resulting in unreliable tracking. With a robust, digital workflow automation, the department has increased overall energy resilience.

Topics Covered

Asset Management
Process Improvement

Cost

Initial: 12 Thousand USD

Funding

General Fund/Existing Public Funds

Project Status

Operational since 2022

Gov Champion

Energy Resource Manager, Energy Services Department

Problem Addressed

Facing rapid population growth, the St. George utility department struggled to keep up with increasing energy demand.

With idyllic scenery and a beautiful climate, St. George, Utah attracts a steadily growing population of transplants along with its fair share of seasonal tourists. As a result, St. George is one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S. and the seventh largest city in Utah.

The population growth poses a challenge to the city's utility department, which provides electric service to around 31,800 residential and commercial customers. To keep up with increasing demand on its power grid the department needed to better manage resources and optimize workflows.

Of the city’s departments, St. George Energy Services Department (SGESD) spends the most on materials and equipment. It’s responsible for purchasing a wide range of items ranging from fuses and power poles to substation transformers, adding up to over $1 million dollars in value. Tracking assets is crucial for the department's success, but they still relied on paper, pens and clipboards to manage inventory. These manual systems and processes couldn't provide the inventory visibility necessary to operate productively nor accurately, which has also impeded their auditing processes.

Solutions Used

St. George was able to automate utility workflows with a new inventory management system.

In order to handle more complex workflows, St. George worked with Radley to implement a homegrown solution that acted as a digital clipboard. The city selected a combination of Zebra MC3300 mobile computers and a Radley integration to Cityworks Storeroom for its automation needs.

SGESD wanted to turn its warehouse into a supermarket-inspired experience, where workers come in, scan what they need and check out as smoothly as possible. SGESD uses the Cityworks APIs to build a web page that holds a QR code for every active work order for the warehouse. Now crew superintendents can digitally assign work orders so employees can easily identify tasks. With each component piece barcoded, workers can scan their work orders and be guided to the correct equipment and materials for each job. They then scan what was used to keep track of overall material usage.

In the background, Radley runs to automatically update the Cityworks system with real-time inventory data with each scan. As a result, inventory tracking is higher and SGESD has increased cycle counting which has helped complete inventory operations without shutting down warehouse operations. Now that data is accurate and centrally stored, St. George can complete regulatory audits in a quarter of the time it took previously.

Outcomes

1

Supported 98% reliability in delivering utilities with minimal outages, providing dependable energy for St. George residents

2

Fewer input errors and higher accuracy saved the team 20 hours a week of data entry and helped them to deliver an 80% time savings on inventory tasks

3

Increased asset visibility, now that any city-owned asset can be tracked and traced in real time

4

Centralized, accurate data has allowed the department to prepare and submit audits in a quarter of the time that it took previously

5

Automated tracking helps the department deliver timely repairs and identify potential problems before they arise

Who Should Consider

City departments focused on streamlining inventory processes to reduce waste, increase reporting efficiency and save staff time.

Last Updated

May 5th, 2022
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