FVS and Campbell’s team partnered to improve Ft.Wayne fleet operation standards and processes. The northern Indiana city, population 250,000, operates a 1,400-vehicle fleet, encompassing police cars, city passenger vehicles, dump tractors, payloaders, construction equipment, and other city equipment. Campbell handles city vendor contracts and all vehicle and equipment specifications and purchasing.He also serves as the mayor’s “fleet resource,” sharing knowledge and expertise on how fleet can help serve the city’s mission.His goals include:
- Fostering a cohesive, coordinated “one-team” effort.
- Reducing equipment purchasing.
- Evolving as a “green fleet.”
- ASE Blue Seal Shop designation.
- ISO9001:2000 certification.
- Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) IOSHA recognition.
An important element in the process to improve fleet operations was city Mayor Graham Richard’s “High Performance Government” initiative to foster staff leadership,which incorporated such private-sector programs as Six Sigma. One of the first U.S. government entities to offer employees Six Sigma green belt and black belt training, Ft.Wayne implemented the team-structured, databased problem solving process to improve customer service and increase city government effectiveness. According to Reagan, himself a Lean Six Sigma Master Green Belt, other U.S. cities traveled to Ft.Wayne to study how the city has used the program in its operations. Team Guided by Vision Statement
Ft.Wayne’s fleet management team and its FVS partner both are guided by a vision statement that encourages an organizational culture in which:
- Continuous improvement is a fundamental expectation.
- An open atmosphere of communication encourages an interdependence
of team members’ skills, abilities, talents, experiences, abilities,
- Employees are part of the solution to challenges.
- An ability to adapt to changes is a critical value.
- Change is embraced and failure is seen as learning opportunity.
Ft.Wayne’s fleet improvement effort to date has achieved the following results.
- The only FVS Blue Seal municipal shop in the state of Indiana, the entire maintenance operation is yellow-belt certified. Staff levels include 17 master certifications on the floor and 159 ASE certifications among 15 technicians. Twenty-five employees hold both CPR and First Aid certifications. Employees are paid for reaching educational goals and advanced certifications.
- The FVS-operated shop is ISO9001:2000-certified in comprehensive
fleet maintenance services. Each month, 800 work orders are processed
with less than 0.02-percent come-backs over a five-year period.
- The FVS maintenance shop is one of only two in the country to receive OSHA-VPP recognition. The shop boasts of a six-year record of no lost time due to injury.
- Ft Wayne is one of just two fleets ever nominated for the John F. Kennedy School of Government Innovation Award, recognizing and promoting excellence and creativity in the public sector.
- Overall vehicle availability has averaged 99 percent over the past four years.
- While Ft.Wayne’s fleet has grown 17 percent over the past seven years, overall maintenance costs are 15-percent less (in today’s dollars) than in 1996.
- Organizational efficiencies have resulted in $730,000 net savings to the city over the past five years.
- For its “green” efforts, Ft.Wayne received the “Green Fleet” award. Emissions have been reduced by 50 percent, through switching to hybrid, biodiesel, and E-85-powered vehicles. Recipient SUVs were eliminated saving an estimated $256,594 over a seven-year lifecycle. In addition, the FVS recycling policy exceeds in-state standards, recycles oil filters, absorbents, steel, used oil, aluminum, cardboard, parts washers, fluorescent light bulbs, oil separators, and antifreeze.