Central Contra Costa Sanitary District

Martinez, California, United States

Raftelis conducted both an organizational assessment project and a cost of service study for Central Contra Costa Sanitary District (District). The District provides secondary wastewater treatment to approximately 467,500 residents and approximately 3,000 businesses in central Contra Costa County from a service area of approximately 144 square miles. Along with the treatment of 35 million gallons per day, the District maintains a collection system of 1,500 miles of pipeline and 19 pumping stations. The study included the following activities: 

  • Understanding of the District’s strategic goals and cultural values and how that impacts staffing and alignment of resources 
  • Reviewing the operations and staff allocation for Central San’s wastewater collection system and operations staff  
  • Reviewing the capital projects management and engineering section for effective practices and workforce allocation to proactively address asset management 
  • Examining the future staffing needs of the District with respect to increased capital investment, a more stringent regulatory environment, and expanded distribution of recycled water to the service area 
  • Ensuring staffing levels allow for proper succession planning to minimize the loss of institutional knowledge with the retirement of key personnel 
  • Assessing practices and policies for workforce staffing, assignments, and management 
  • Conducting an employee survey to determine workplace strengths, areas for improvement, and to provide an opportunity for anonymous feedback 
  • Gauging appropriate staffing levels by conducting an external benchmarking analysis with industry peers 
  • Conducting off-site workshops with the Board and Executive staff to garner feedback on the progress of the Staffing Plan and Cost of Service Study 

Raftelis conducted over 60 one-on-one and group interviews with all 287 employees to define areas of opportunity for the organization to improve. Throughout the project, Raftelis worked closely with the General Manager, Executive Staff, and the Board to ensure complete transparency and to receive on-going input. 

The final report recommended several changes to the organizational structure supported by District management. Using the currently budgeted full-time equivalent employees (no additional staffing), the final recommended organizational changes resulted in: 

  • Better alignment of common functions 
  • Improved workforce flexibility 
  • Enhanced support for supervisor span of control 
  • Ensured that desired service levels would be met 
  • Supported succession planning efforts 
  • Positioned the District for future needs 

In addition, several recommendations covering such topics as hiring practices, meeting efficiency, use of technology in the workplace, and observation of the District/Board governance model were also included.