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Derby City Council and Whitespace clean up and Keep Britain Tidy Awards


Whitespace is delighted to have been recognised for its work with Derby City Council, winning the Outstanding Service Delivery Award at the recent Keep Britain Tidy Network Awards. The awards, which recognise councils’ efforts to make environmental improvements for residents, were once again inundated with entries despite the challenges caused by the pandemic.

Derby’s entry focused on the digitisation of its street cleansing service. This new solution replaced a paper-based system that had a number of limitations including:

  • Paper usage which impacted on carbon footprint and the environment
  • Communication between the back office and front-line teams was reliant on the use of mobile phones
  • Inability to understand real-time round progress and workload of each team
  • Reliance on team knowledge to navigate their rounds and understand hot-spot locations
  • Difficulty extracting data which required further intervention or reporting information
  • Hard to produce meaningful reports to provide insight or support intelligence-led decisions

Recognising that there may be technology systems available on the market with the capability of eliminating or reduce the challenges faced while also providing significant service efficiencies, Derby undertook a meticulous audit and scoping exercise. Following a detailed market review, the decision was taken to develop and utilise the Whitespace system already employed by the refuse collection team.

The system was initially introduced into the fly-tipping, graffiti, litter bin emptying, mechanical sweeping, building cleaning contract and the supervisory Team Leaders.  This was followed by a further rollout to the routine cleansing teams. Key elements of the solution were the provision of handheld mobile devices together with a back-office software solution integrated into Derby’s CRM system.

Some of the improvements realised by the implementation, which helped Derby to win this coveted and prestigious award, include:

  • Reducing the environmental footprint by eliminating over 10, 000 printed paper worksheets a year
  • Increased work allocation speed to front-line teams as a result of digitisation
  • Decrease in the end-to-end turnaround time of customer requests by 71%
  • Better visibility of front-line team workloads and progress enables work to be moved across the teams, increasing on time completion
  • Decreasing travel time and the associated fuel and maintenance costs through implementation of route optimisation technology and GPS mapping
  • Analytics feature captures information for all jobs and produces meaningful and accurate service reports. This in turn allows trend analysis and hot-spot identification to understand if any further interventions are required
  • Data capture for a litter bin audit which identified the exact location, type and condition of each bin. This information is used as part of an asset replacement plan to ensure all bins remain functional and safe for the public

Everyone at Whitespace would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Derby City Council on winning the Keep Britain Tidy Award and we look forward to continuing working closely together on the continued development of your system.

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