Do you often hear esoteric words thrown around about financial sustainability, asset backlog, SRV, special schedule 7, asset re-evaluation, depreciation methodology and arguments like “it was the engineers”, “it was the accountants” and “we don’t have a system that does this”?
This alien language was thrust upon me when I arrived at Rockdale City Council as the Executive Officer and tasked with the role to facilitate the review and improvement of the way assets were managed.
The catalysts for change arrived in 2012 when the newly appointed General Manger and Executive Team focused more closely on asset and financial management due to a series of independent audits and assessments that highlighted Rockdale as not tracking very well against industry benchmarks. We were challenged with an increasing asset backlog and hence unlikely to become financially sustainable heading into the future, and without a clear and agreed direction. Does this all sound familiar?
A series of workshops and robust staff discussions resulted in the development of an asset management improvement road map; a holistic change management approach involving people, processes and tools.
Now, three years into the road map implementation, Rockdale has achieved significant improvements and is well positioned to be ‘Fit for the Future’.
The next conference in this series, Local Government Financial Sustainability, takes place in Sydney in September 2016. Book soon to secure your place!