Local Authorities are under constant pressure to deal with municipal waste effectively; often on tightening budgets. In fact, teams are so busy managing immediate problems that it’s difficult to step back and analyse the bigger picture.
However, many of the everyday issues affecting waste management departments arise from the fact that operations are being coordinated by out-of-date software – or no software at all. And while these processes might allow you to keep pace with current demand, there will come a point at which they are no longer fit for purpose.
Rather than wait for your current systems to reach breaking point, Local Authorities should be looking for more effective ways to manage municipal waste now, while you have the time to find the right new solution.
If any of these signs seem familiar, it could be time to start the search for a new system sooner than you think…
1. You can’t keep pace with demand
If missed collections and complaints are mounting up, chances are that your system is not equipped to manage the growing demands of local waste collections.
Some waste management teams will find they are able to keep pace with refuse levels on an average week, but then throw in a curve ball like a Bank Holiday or an environmental services request and the system starts to crumble.
In an ideal world, Local Authority teams need municipal waste management software that can respond to collection demands in real-time – printing ad hoc round sheets if needed to help collection crews manage the situation quickly and effortlessly.
2. You’re drowning in paperwork
It sometimes feels hard to justify the cost of new waste management software, but many teams fail to factor in how much productivity is wasted purely through paperwork.
Manual systems or out-of-date technology results in personnel having to manage most admin requirements by hand, which is timely, costly, and prone to error. It’s also rather boring – few people get job satisfaction from filing documents!
A good piece of waste management software will take the admin burden off your hands, so staff can focus on more valuable tasks. Not only that, it speeds up many of the core processes involved in refuse collection, so crews can get to work quicker from week to week.
3. It’s hard to communicate with collection crews
While some Local Authorities have systems in place for managing strategic refuse requirements, not all platforms enable them to communicate with front-line colleagues.
This results in situations where messages need to be relayed between rounds, slowing down the time it takes to respond to important requests.
Leading waste management solutions often feature instant notification channels, which send updates to the lorry cab in real-time. They also enable two-way communication, so crews can notify office teams if unforeseen obstacles arise during the course of their round.
4. Local residents are growing frustrated
It’s not just crews that can struggle to get their message heard; many local residents grow frustrated with the lack of immediate action when they have an issue or requests.
These problems stem from the fact that Local Authorities don’t always integrate feedback channels into their waste management systems, so customer service teams don’t have the necessary data to hand when somebody contacts them to complain.
Ideally, front of house staff should have the tools at their fingertips to update local residents on the status of their collection, logging any extraordinary requests that come through. This information can be input straight into the waste management system and dealt with swiftly.
5. You can’t report back on performance
Effective waste management is not just about dealing with problems effectively; it’s about Local Authority teams proving when you’ve hit ambitious targets.
Gathering and analysing data to demonstrate performance can be difficult when you’re operating manual systems, or your current platform doesn’t include a reporting functionality. Therefore, it’s wise to look for a waste management solution that integrates reporting tools – so you can easily share department successes and savings.
Whitespace Municipal has enabled 100+ Local Authorities to future-proof the way they manage waste. Book a demo and see how we can make waste management easier for your team.