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How Will Open Data Affect Houston?

BY Niki Virani

The City of Houston has an Open Data Administrative Procedure (policy) and we’ve started cataloging and identifying data sets that will be available on the Open Data Portal but what does the Open Data policy mean for employees, residents, and entrepreneurs? This blog post will look at just that, however, let’s define some terms to level-set.

What is data?

It is information that has been gathered by the City during its normal course of business.

What kind of data does the open data policy address?

Filed Under
open data, civic innovation, policy, data

Departments
Citywide

Performance Insight FY15-Q1

BY Jesse Bounds

Performance Insight in Action...

When I became Mayor, I saw an opportunity to further encourage and develop the talents of our dedicated employees by providing Lean Six Sigma training, a systematic problem solving technique intended to reduce waste, improve processes and enhance quality of operations. While we weren’t the first City to adopt Lean Six Sigma methods, we’ve built one of the largest and most intensive public quality regimens in the world!

Filed Under
Performance Insight, performance measures, 311 Service Requests, personnel, sick time, FMLA, OT, Lean Six Sigma, yellow belt, BARC, nuisance on property, stray animal, H.E.R.O., employee count, budget variance, overtime budget

Departments
Citywide

Milestone on Lean Six Sigma Training: Over 1,000 City of Houston Employees Trained

BY Frank Bracco

In December 2012, the City of Houston embarked on a journey of continuous improvement by creating a Lean Six Sigma program to train employees and improve City performance. Lean Six Sigma is a process improvement methodology typically used in the manufacturing sector to deliver high quality goods or service as efficiently as possible. The goal is simple: combine Six Sigma's focus on eliminating defects with Lean's focus on continuous flow, voice of the customer, and continuous improvement in order to make business processes better, faster, and cheaper.

Filed Under
Lean Six Sigma, LSS, process improvement, continous improvement, infographic

Departments
Citywide, Finance Department

Working to Close the Feedback Loop on Open Data and Civic Innovation

BY Frank Bracco

A feedback loop is an important information path for most organizations, the City of Houston included. Following this year’s City of Houston Open Innovation Hackathon, we realized we still have some work to do on closing the feedback loop for Civic Innovation and Open Data.

Filed Under
open data, civic innovation, google analytics, analytics, hackahton

Departments
Citywide

Fit Fleet

BY Paul Fagin

If you only drove your vehicle three days a week, would you still keep it? Would you spend the time and money needed to maintain and repair the vehicle? Now imagine what you would do if you were in charge of a fleet of vehicles.

Filed Under
Fleet, FMD, Fleet Management Department, Fleet Management, vehicles, performance improvement, performance measures, graphs, fit fleet, cars, trucks, vans

Departments
Fleet Management Department

PWE-HPC - HR Recruiting Process Improvement

BY Frank Bracco

Project Summary: Reduced the average recruiting cycle time by 20% by automating recruitment requests, fine tuning interview and selection processes, introducing job fair style recruiting, and regulating starting pay.

Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a customer centric way of thinking and problem solving that seeks to continually identify and eliminate waste.

Filed Under
LSS, Lean Six Sigma, green belt, PWE, public works, HPC, houston permitting center, HR, recruiting

Departments
Public Works & Engineering

FIN - Paving Lien Processing

BY Frank Bracco

Project Summary: Decreased the cycle time for processing outstanding paving lien requests by 75% (or, approximately 4 hours).

Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a customer centric way of thinking and problem solving that seeks to continually identify and eliminate waste.

Filed Under
paving lien, Finance Department, Lean Six Sigma, LSS, green belt

Departments
Finance Department

Revisiting Q3 Performance Insight’s Quarterly Highlight: EMS Collections

BY Frank Bracco

In the 2014-Q3 Performance Insight Report, EMS Collections were highlighted. With the close of the 3rd quarter, Performance Insight reported that EMS collections were on track to meet or exceed budget. With the close of the 4th quarter, the Finance Department is pleased to provided unaudited numbers that show EMS Collections exceeded budgeted estimated by 7%, resulting in an additional $2.26 million in EMS Collections revenues.

Filed Under
EMS, performance improvement, revenue, Performance Insight, 2014-Q3, 2014-Q4, graphs, vizs

Departments
Finance Department, Houston Fire Department

Performance Insight: FY14-Q4

BY Jesse Bounds
Performance Insight in Action...

As we conclude the first year of producing these Performance Insight reports, I’d like to provide an update on the ongoing work to improve our performance. Over the past year we focused on developing meaningful internal and external-facing performance measures, and creating a culture of accountability through data-driven management. We improved data quality and processes to support validation. We developed a follow-up process to encourage action when performance does not meet expectations.

Filed Under
Performance Insight, performance measures, 311 Service Requests, personnel, sick time, FMLA, OT, budget bootcamp, 311 Performance Dashboards, demolition derby, BARC, Fleet, service level agreement, SLA, end of year, Lean Six Sigma, budget v. actual, budget utilization

Departments
Citywide

Houston Hackathon Roundup

BY Niki Virani

Last weekend boasted many outdoor activities from Free Press Summer Fest to Sunday Streets, however, I spent my weekend indoors at the 2nd Annual City of Houston Hackathon. The hackathon is a 24-hour event where civic minded individuals share ideas and code for a cause. The cause, making the city they call home a better place. This was my first hackathon and I’m so glad I attended. The energy in the air Saturday morning was infectious and by Sunday it was clear that in 24 hours these teams had delivered some innovative high quality ideas.

Filed Under
Houston Hackathon, civic innovation, open data, code for good, civic hacking, national day of civic hacking

Departments

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