North Texas Municipal Water District

Wylie, Texas, United States

Deep in the heart of Texas one of the biggest water utilities in the U.S. is building a better organization. 

Over the last 60 years the North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) has quietly grown from a small operation on the outskirts of Dallas to a major U.S. water utility with over 1.6 million customers over an area the size of the State of Delaware. Rapid growth has stretched water resources, taxed assets, and created organizational challenges. NTMWD is tackling these challenges head on and becoming a world-class utility in the process. Working with Raftelis, NTMWD is engaging stakeholders in innovative ways, implementing new strategies, and using new performance assessment measures. 

Challenged both by the rate of growth and by its extreme geographic reach, NTMWD asked Raftelis to conduct an organizational assessment study to evaluate its operating practices and staffing levels to aid the delivery of affordable services with the intent of evolving into a leader in the utility industry. The scope of the project was of such a size that the project was divided into two phases. Phase I assessed the Wastewater Division and the Shared Support Services, while Phase II (ongoing) assesses the Water Division. Services provided include: 

  • Reviewing staffing level needs both in terms of quantity and function of staff 
  • Assessing workforce support functions, including HR policies, safety, and training 
  • Evaluating operating practices and conditions at facilities 
  • Assessing how centralized maintenance functions are delivered to remote facilities 
  • Conducting workshops with Executive Leadership to validate findings and to maintain communication as to the Study’s progress 
  • Surveying staff as to their views of the District’s performance in relation to the principles of Effective Utility Management (EUM) 
  • Benchmarking the District’s performance to other peer utilities and national standards 

Following these activities in Phase I, Raftelis identified opportunities for the District to improve its organization. In addition to a range of specific recommendations, Raftelis developed five initiatives to transform the organization. The initiatives are in the areas of: Safety and Risk Management; Training; Asset Management; Maintenance; and Total Quality Operations. Raftelis is working with NTMWD to implement several of the elements of these initiatives and has completed a training master plan. 

In conjunction with the organizational development and performance improvement services, Raftelis has provided facilitation services to aid in strategic partnering between the District and its member and customer cities. Raftelis has assisted with updating and reformulating job descriptions for several operations positions. Raftelis is also working with the District Board on Governance strengthening and member relationships.