No redundancies in building unit

No further job losses are expected from the first of several major reviews of Dunedin City Council department operations aimed at increasing efficiencies and cutting costs.

The building control unit is the first department to be comprehensively reviewed and its managers are confident the changes proposed will deliver a cheaper, faster service.

Some jobs have already gone through natural attrition and development services manager Kevin Thompson said there were no plans to make any staff redundant.

However, every aspect of the unit's work was scrutinised and the roles and functions of staff would change, as would the unit's systems and processes.

A full review was called for in May last year, after the council received a report showing both the cost of consents and the cost of running the building control unit were significantly higher in Dunedin than in other centres.

But the review did not start until after the arrival of new chief executive Paul Orders, who launched an organisation-wide efficiency drive.

Mr Orders said earlier this year he expected to identify significant potential savings from the review.

Mr Thompson said a peer review was done by Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes district council staff and an external consultant reviewed the unit's systems and how they were operating.

Department staff had been shown the proposed changes and had until tomorrow to make submissions to management.

After the submissions were considered and the proposals tweaked, where necessary, the council would meet the building industry to get its feedback before they were signed off by the council's executive management team.

He expected it would be about a month before the changes were made public.

Major reviews of the council's libraries and ICT divisions, followed by other council departments, are also expected.



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