In 2012, the Village of Glencoe and the Glencoe Park District kicked
off a shared services pilot program to reduce internal costs. The two
entities agreed to work together to accomplish routine maintenance tasks
in-house rather than hiring contractors when equipment or human
resources ran short. For example, the Park District has taken over grass
mowing while the Village handles routine tree maintenance.
GIS was asked to support this initiative by creating a database of
tree locations that the two entities could share. Using the new custom
overlay for public option in MapOffice™, GIS was able to share the Park
District’s tree inventory and associated data in an easy-to-use format.
Each tree’s unique ID number is displayed on the map, which gives staff
members an easy way to communicate about a specific location without
having to do a site visit. To view additional information about a
particular tree, such as its species, overall condition, or planned
maintenance work, the user simply clicks on the tree to bring up an
information box. As trees are pruned, removed, or replaced, this data is
updated to show the completed work. If a supervisor needs to send a
crew out to do work on a particular tree, he or she can mark up and
print out a map to send out in the field for reference.
The shared services initiative has already saved the Village roughly
$100,000 in maintenance expenses. Thanks to its membership in the GIS
Consortium, Glencoe didn’t have to turn around and spend any of that
money on new software to share data with its new partner.