Director of Public Works
City of Lakewood, Calif.
Population served: 81,000
Budget: $13.7 million; $8 million CIP
Favorite technology: Tablet computers
“Tablet computers have been a real advancement for our industry, as well as just about everyone,” says Lisa Ann Rapp. Lightweight and mobile, tablets (like Apple’s iPad) are equipped with cameras, microphones, and touch screens. They don’t need a mouse or keyboard.
“It’s been so much easier to work remotely. I can access all types of software through Web interfaces,” Rapp explains. “It has also enhanced my ability to communicate with my colleagues and staff.”
The Lakewood Public Works Department plans to provide tablets to field supervisors and select field crews, so they can access work orders while in the field and more readily respond to service requests from the public. Employees will be able to order parts, supplies, and equipment from wherever they are, and update inventories and systems. Water department employees are already equipped with tablets, and can access the water system computer model and atlas information in the field via computer, saving time and money.
“All of this speeds up service delivery. It allows our crews to respond more rapidly and work more efficiently,” she says.
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