STATUS: COMPLETE

STATUS: COMPLETE

As its first Lean Six Sigma project, Kern Behavioral Health and Recovery Services identified fleet utilization as a project that needed improvement. Too many county vehicles were underutilized (67%) before the project, in part due to employees using their personal vehicles. To improve even mileage distribution, the team collected real-time mileage data and implemented visual management boards.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
This project is important because it decreases the costs associated with reimbursing staff for personal mileage. This project also resulted in a decrease in lease costs because the department has reduced its fleet size.

RESULTS
Because of these improvements, cost savings amount to $23,854 between January and September 2017.

STATUS: IN PROGRESS

STATUS: IN PROGRESS

The Treasurer-Tax Collector identified incorrect property tax payments and check processing times for its first Lean Six Sigma project. Often, the department receives incorrect payments and duplicate payments from taxpayers, which increases staff time to research, process, and either send checks back, refund payments, or ask for additional funds which all include manual processes. The team is addressing this problem by redesigning the current tax bill to make it easier for taxpayers to understand what amount is owed and when and by highlighting the online payment service. The team is also conducting outreach and education and meeting with different stakeholders involved in the process. For check processing, the department has changed how it interfaces with the bank's lock box processing center to increase its utilization and automate its incorrect payment, or rejected payment processing methodology.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
By improving these processes, taxpayers will have an easier time understanding how much they owe in property taxes, when it is due and will increase payment processing efficiency. The process improvement will also decrease costs associated with staff time devoted to this issue.

RESULTS
Cost savings are projected to amount to $119,520, which includes a reduction of staff time devoted to previous efforts.

STATUS: COMPLETE

STATUS: COMPLETE

Kern County offers an impressive benefit package to our employees. Currently, Human Resources provides a quite cumbersome package of documents to new and current employees, which can be daunting to review and to select the appropriate benefits on the spot. Through Human Resource's innovation, all employees now have access to an electronic benefit packet.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Employees are able to review and consult with loved ones on benefit decisions from the comfort of their own computer. Department staff no longer has to coordinate the production and delivery of physical benefit documents.

RESULTS
Estimated savings of $27,000 in printing, mailing, and staff costs.

California State Association of Counties 2017 Merit Award Recipient

California State Association of Counties 2017 Merit Award Recipient

Oil and Gas permitting in Kern County was handled exclusively through the State of California Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resource (DOGGR) - which could take months or years to complete due to need for environmental compliance. To address this, the Planning Department established an ordinance for oil and gas permitting. The ordinance allowed for the department to create a program that assisted applicants through approaches that were electronic, accessible, and convenient to the applicants to expedite review of a local County permit in less than 7 days and final permitting from the State.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
This improvement has significantly reduced the staff time and costs associated with obtaining permits, as well as the time for the applicants.

RESULTS
Within the last year, the County has processed over 2,000 oil and gas permits in an average timeframe of four to six days with a staff of three.

Status: Complete
Status: Complete

As its first Lean Six Sigma Project, Kern Behavioral Health and Recovery Services identified fleet utilization as a project that needed improvement. Before the project, too many county vehicles were underutilized (69%). To improve even mileage distribution, the team collected real-time mileage data and implemented visual management boards.
Why is it important?
This project is important because even mileage distribution among vehicles helps maintain low maintenance costs.

Status: In progress
Status: In progress

The Treasurer-Tax Collector identified incorrect payments as its first Lean Six Sigma Project. Often, the department receives incorrect payments from taxpayers and duplicate payments, which increases staff time to research, process, and send checks back to the property owner. The team is addressing this problem by redesigning the current tax bill to make it easier for taxpayers to understand what amount is owed. The team is also conducting outreach and education and meeting with different stakeholders involved in the process.
Why is it important?
By improving this process, taxpayers will have an easier understanding of how much taxes they owe. The process improvement will also decrease costs associated with staff time devoted to this issue.

Status: Complete
Status: Complete

When new employees arrive at the County, they have the opportunity to participate in the employee benefit package. One of the challenges with this process is that the benefits packets take too long to distribute to new-hires and potential employees. To address this, the Human Resources team improved the process by going paperless and streamlining communication.
Why is it important?
This improvement will save approximately $27,000 from printing, mailing, and staffing costs.