WARREN, MICHIGAN – In December, 2008, as he had promised in his State-of-the-City address, Mayor Jim Fouts reallocated budgeted resources to create a CitiStat performance management team within the Department of Public Service, which provides the most critical City services directly to the community. Mayor Fouts created the CitiStat Implementation Committee, which consists of the directors of key administration departments, including Controller, Personnel/Risk Management, Labor Relations, City Attorney, and Public Service.
The Department’s Administrative Supervisor, serves as CitiStat coordinator/analyst and performance officer, with the intention of incorporating student interns for the purpose of data collection and analysis support. In the short-term, Warren will have created a new concept in the administrative process without first incurring additional cost. In the long-term, it will have created a foundation by which Warren government can run as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.
The CitiStat approach is a management concept born in Baltimore, MD, and adopted by a handful of cities throughout the nation, in order to analyze and inform their administration of shortfalls in efficiencies and cost controls throughout city government. Through regularly-held meetings with key decision-makers and subordinates, the administration will be able to react to problems and take corrective action in a real-time basis. CitiStat conducts ongoing dialogue with all administration departments and divisions, and is responsible for sorting through information and provide data analysis to weed out inefficiencies and streamline government efficiency.
One of Warren CitiStat’s first goals was to collect monies already owed to the city for services performed, that had previously gone uncollected, or were simply placed on the tax rolls. In just a short period of time, the Public Service Department collected approximately $19,287 by implementing a simple collection process, which can now be implemented in other areas of city government that have not historically aggressively attempted to collect on their debts. This is an example of an inefficiency that was not previously realized, with collections being one of several efficiencies the CitiStat model will create for the City of Warren.
Warren CitiStat’s next step will be to implement performance management systems that will tie the city’s existing computer enterprise systems together, while providing a blanket system to fill the void where one currently does not exist. This will also provide us with a “digital dashboard” to monitor city services on a real-time basis.