Hinchinbrook Shire Council is located in tropical North Queensland, just over an hour's drive north of Townsville and three hours south of Cairns. With a population of approximately 11,500, the Council has a rich multicultural population, most call the heart of the Shire, Ingham, home. Encompassed by National Parks, tropical rainforests, islands and the Great Barrier Reef, Hinchinbrook is home to Australia’s highest single drop waterfall, Wallaman Falls.
Being a small council Hinchinbrook have faced financial constraints and budget challenges, which has meant that while the rest of the world digitally transformed, they remained the same.
The absence of technological change led to Hinchinbrook feeling limited and their previous platform lacked the desired capabilities needed to future-proof operations. As an organisation, they were looking to drive efficiencies and make life simple for both their staff and community.
“We’re either going to have to heavily invest in our previous platform to get it to do what we needed it to do, or we had to move to CiA,” said Brett Exelby, Director of Corporate Communications, Hinchinbrook Shire Council.
“We were looking for something that we could do everything in and that was interconnected.”
Hinchinbrook Shire Council Chief Executive Officer, Kelvin Tytherleigh, recognised that to improve reporting, operational efficiency and be more interactive with staff and their community, a digital evolution would need to occur.
“We knew that the adoption of good technology would save us money, make us more efficient and more effective and that’s a really key thing that we were trying to adopt,” said Tytherleigh.
“There’s a really strong understanding within the organisation that the way we had configured the previous set up didn’t give us the granularity for report writing to enable us to find out where we could become more efficient or save money to address our financial position. Our staff understood that we need to be financially sustainable or there’s going to be big problems two or three years down the track when we run out of money.”
“CiA gives us the opportunity to move to more electronic-based solutions rather than paper-based solutions. It gives us that single point of truth, rather than multiple excel spreadsheets across the organisation where you have multiple things that lead to inefficiencies, error and ultimately poor decision making at a strategic level,” says Kelvin Tytherleigh, Chief Executive Officer, Hinchinbrook Shire Council.
In 2022, Hinchinbrook Shire Council made the decision to migrate from Ci to CiA and approached TechnologyOne to start the process.
“We started our conversations with TechnologyOne, talking through our problems with making this transition happen, how we could do it and the difficulties that we would face as a smaller organisation because we were resource poor,” Exelby says.
“TechnologyOne came to us and said, we’ve got a solution [CiA Live]. What we envision is that councils will make the journey from Ci to CiA using this migration central tool,” said Steven Veltmeyer, Information Services Manager, Hinchinbrook Shire Council.
CiA Live is a simple and efficient solution to upgrade an organisation’s business processes from TechnologyOne’s Ci platform to the fourth generation ERP platform, CiA. It is a purpose-built tool designed to support and enable an organisation to self-navigate through a guided set of migration steps.
TechnologyOne provides organisations with a dedicated CiA Live team to assist with the migration, something Hinchinbrook’s Director Corporate and Community Services, Brett Exelby, says was critical.
“The TechnologyOne Project Manager that was assigned to us, Phil, did a fantastic job. I think the relationship that we had with Phil made it so much better for us and was a critical part of the process.”
Throughout the migration process, the Council found project planning, regular communication with internal staff and TechnologyOne, and proper change management processes were key to the project’s success and encourage other councils to do the same.
“When you’re moving from Ci to CiA and working with the CiA Live team, make sure you’re talking to your project manager all the time, have that regular communication, it works much more seamlessly as long as you keep talking,” says Exelby.
“Having a really robust project plan with key milestone dates is imperative. Make sure you do proper user acceptance testing along the way and then set a go live date and stick to it so that your staff know what your target date is,” says Kelvin Tytherleigh, Chief Executive Officer of Hinchinbrook Shire Council.
We knew that the adoption of good technology would save us money, make us more efficient and more effective and that’s a really key thing that we were trying to adopt.
By taking part in TechnologyOne’s CiA Live initiative, Hinchinbrook Shire Council were able to migrate from TechnologyOne’s Ci platform to CiA, efficiently and effectively and are now seeing the benefits.
“TechnologyOne’s CiA platform is our main customer relationship management system. It’s what the Council uses to interact with customers, do rates notices, finance, all asset management and payroll, and a whole bunch of other stuff. It’s sort of the heartbeat of what the Council does,” says Steven Veltmeyer, Information Services Manager, Hinchinbrook Shire Council.
Now on CiA, the Council says it has made work simpler for staff and they see real potential in the way they will be able to use its features and capabilities in the future.
“We’re really looking forward to seeing what we can do to really make it something that the organisation by default uses. It just makes their job easier, that’s what it’s meant to do,” Exelby says.
The Council’s staff can now access the solution anywhere, at any time and on any device, enabling them to be more efficient. Hinchinbrook’s Director of Corporate Communications, Brett Exelby, believes it will eventually be very beneficial to customers too.
“One of the things I’m really looking forward to will be really making it so that it’s the community’s portal to access Council business.”
By using TechnologyOne’s CiA Live initiative, Hinchinbrook Shire Council is seeing the benefits of staying up-to-date with technology and Chief Executive Officer Kelvin Tytherleigh is encouraging other councils to get on board.
“It gives your business the tools to drive productivity and efficiency, and it gives your staff confidence that you’re up-to-date and serious about bringing your organisation forward into the 21st Century and leading the way into the future.”
About Hinchinbrook Shire Council
The Shire of Hinchinbrook is a local government area in North Queensland, Australia. The shire covers an area of 2,807 square kilometres (1,083.8 sq mi), and has a population of approx 11,000 people.
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