Anne Arundel Commission Targets “Excellence”

This week, Anne Arundel County’s Commission on Excellence released a report of its findings after the commission conducted a review of Anne Arundel County government operations.

From EyeOnAnnapolis.net’s article,

…the Commission’s role was to review the operations, policies, procedures and processes of every county department.

The Commission on Excellence was made up of 45+ citizens from neighborhoods throughout Anne Arundel County. The group possessed a variety of professional backgrounds, skills and experience. The members were organized into six teams with each team assigned to review 3-4 county departments. The teams conducted a series of thorough interviews with the departments’ management and staff, collected and analyzed information about the departments’ programs and processes, and compared the departments with their peers in other Maryland counties, when applicable.

Each team submitted a written report of their findings, and presented their recommendations in person to the County Executive, Chief Administrative Officer, and each department head.

The reports identified a number of strengths, weaknesses and opportunities to improve efficiency across all areas of county government. They identified best practices and recommended actions to increase productivity and budget savings. While many of the recommendations were specific to an individual department, a number of common themes were reflected in the Commission’s reports. To download the full report click here.

Central themes:

Technology – Whether it’s applying for a building permit, reserving a field for a youth sports league, or reporting a pothole in need of repair, the county’s current processes are often paper-based and time-intensive.  Residents need to be able to interact with the county in ways that are more convenient and require less effort. Technology solutions will enable many of these processes to be brought online.

People – With many long-time employees nearing retirement, the county faces challenges in maintaining the skilled workforce needed to provide services to the community. While the county has traditionally relied heavily on internal training, alternative solutions are needed.  The county should better leverage local resources such as Anne Arundel Community College to develop training and certification programs specifically for county government careers.

Processes – Processes which are duplicated between departments create unnecessary costs.  Consolidating the county’s maintenance garage operations, centralizing the management of county office space, and partnering with other jurisdictions when purchasing large equipment (county vehicles, police cars, and fire trucks for example) offer opportunities for reducing the costs to taxpayers.

To read more specifics of the Anne Arundel County review, visit EyeOnAnnapolis.net.

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