The Municipality of Wetteren and the Wetteren Public Centre for Social Welfare (OCMW) have moved into a brand-new city hall located next to the Scheldt River. But this was much more than merely moving into a new space. It was also about a new way of working and offering a modern way of service provision. The Municipality of Wetteren and the Wetteren OCMW are facing all the challenges before them with a positive spirit, realism, and ambition. This ambition is also expressed in the working title selected by the employees: ‘Let’s Move It’.
Naturally, we haven’t been standing still in recent years and many initiatives have been launched already. In order to gain a clear overview of the milestones, a comprehensive project plan was drawn up first. This project plan covered all of the themes, from A to Z. An appropriate project and consultation structure was set up parallel to this which creates balance between generating support and maintaining the required speed in the project. The project office was composed of a team from Möbius and a team from the Municipality of Wetteren, which was equal to approximately 2.5 FTE being permanently employed.
The project plan demonstrates that we requested the input and efforts from practically everyone that is involved with the municipality and the OCMW. To maintain the necessary positive spirit in the project, we opted to have a very strong presence in the workplace, as well as to get the employees involved in developing and shaping their own future. Communication sessions have therefore been planned with all employees, a project page has been added to the intranet, and a closed Facebook group has been set up. It costs a lot of time, but it’s a necessary aspect. Plus, it’s particularly informative and pleasant.
Based on the project plan, responsibilities were quickly assigned depending on the relevant theme. The support offered by Möbius is concentrated primarily within the ‘service and operational excellence’ expertise. For example, we contributed to the concrete setup (organizational and infrastructural) of the service floor, the objectification of the debate on the method of the service provision (business hours, working according to agreements, fast lane, etc.), the setup and adjustment of priority processes (reports and complaints, managing the service and product catalogue, etc.), the maximum setup of the supporting service provision channels (website, telephones, etc.), and the setup of the desired organizational structure. From now on, service provision will be more digital, by investing in various resources like a CRM, a customer service system, a virtual platform, an appointment module, etc. This new way of working will be expressed in fun play on words in Dutch, ‘t werken aan ‘t water (working by the water).
The final objective and the desired result of our assistance is a smooth transition of the revised service provision, organization, and operations to the new building. We have worked towards:
- Structured project follow-up based on the project plan and on our experience with public authorities who are planning a move to new premises;
- Support, involvement, and positive spirit from and among all stakeholders (employees, citizens, policy, etc.) through the proper project and consultation structure and a presence in the workplace;
- Detailed concrete results in terms of service and operational excellence, as stated in the approach.