The Clear Take on Water and Wastewater Today

Staffing is a major headache in our industry…

Pants down…that is, if you even see the trouble coming. That’s why we say, “don’t get caught with your pants down.” Increasingly, the calls we get are for staffing help – and fast. City managers have often received a resignation from the guy who has operated their water/wastewater system for years, leaving them wondering how to replace him. It’s good to ponder this sooner than later because dedicated, local talent can be hard to find. That’s why cities are turning to outsourcing/partnering with a specialist ready to help. The beauty of “outsourcing” with PeopleService is that the operators we hire are required to live in or near the communities they serve. This also means that a good portion of the money spent with PeopleService is returned to your community as operators are encouraged to utilize local resources and shop locally.

When you outsource specialty operations, you get assurance that this core task is taken care of by people who know what to do and how to do it. You lower costs – and this is important. You simply cannot compare the cost of one person’s salary with a partner’s proposed contract cost. In our experience, when we partner with a community that has lost their solo operator, we uncover many activities and processes that were not being done – leaving the community vulnerable. Anyone who forgets to put oil in his car knows the issues with ignoring regular, recommended maintenance. Your water/wastewater plants can have the equivalent of 20 to 100 cars to maintain. Paying an expert source to maintain your equipment and processes is shown to save money real-time and hedge against expensive long-term risks.

And here are two benefits to outsourcing that are the most misunderstood: With outsourcing you get staffing flexibility and maintain/gain operational control. Referring to Chad’s article in this edition, it is hard to find the right people for the right seats in this industry – but we do it every day, and because we have a deep bench, we can rotate in specialists from the Midwest who know your systems and assure you don’t miss a beat so sick time and vacations, even resignations are never your problem. That’s operational control! And so is this: When you outsource with us, you get monthly reports that show how your system is operating and the maintenance we’ve done. It’s all in a binding contract that we adhere to. In fact, our clients tell us they now know more about their water/wastewater plants than they ever did with a dedicated employee.

If you think it’s time to consider working with a partner, we’d love to talk with you. Contact Chris McMillen today.