The waste industry is faced with a specific set of unique challenges, and when it comes to running a waste facility, you’re bound to be looking for ways to overcome those challenges and improve your waste facility operations.
In this article, we’ve identified a number of key waste facility operations challenges and improvements. After analysing challenges faced by waste operators, we unpacked the problem for each, provided a possible solution and expanded on how Mandalay can help with this solution. But whether you currently use Mandalay software or not, we hope you find this information and advice useful and practical for your operations.
Challenge 1 – Data Quality & Integrity
Waste facilities can often struggle with effectively capturing information that is required to operate. There can also be a lack of confidence in the data and the information being presented.
Some waste teams endure a cumbersome process with lots of manual intervention which can often involve pulling information out through excel spreadsheets, double-handling, manual manipulation and maybe even changing or transferring the information into even more formats. The risk of errors in the data is significant, not to mention the time and effort involved in this process.
Quality and integrity starts with the structure of the data and is followed by effective workflow through business systems.
It’s so important to get the data right and to present it in a meaningful way to council to make informed operational decisions. So how do you gather, report on and consume your data in an effective and trustworthy way?
Solution – Standardisation, Automation and Data Synchronisation
Firstly, standardisation of how the information is captured must be established. It is then helpful to identify the common elements you need to report against to the council and ensure the system you use to collect and analyse that data is designed to suit this.
Having a system that collects, analyses, and reports on that data automatically without the need for manual intervention is another essential element to have confidence in your data. For this to happen, the system should be developed to capture information that is then synchronised back into a central database. This enables everyone in your organisation to be able to access data from across the entire organisation rather than having data isolated between different facilities.
With this level of data accessibility, you will have confidence knowing that whatever is being recorded is consistent and available in a centralised manner. It also allows your organisation to gain a more holistic view of your operations.
How Mandalay Can Help
Mandalay’s Facility Analytics and Reporting product offers this solution and so much more. Not only can you gain a big picture view across your facilities, but you can collect, analyse, and report on that data through a single platform that can be accessed from multiple locations. You get access to this information in near-real time and have the flexibility to obtain multiple views of your waste data through dashboards and reports with no manual handling needed.
Challenge 2 – Infrastructure & Software That Meets The Needs of Your Entire Site
Each council and site are different, which can make it hard to get the infrastructure that truly works for all the nuances and moving parts involved in your operations. Because of this, councils can struggle with the infrastructure and software at their facilities because it has been bolted on and it is not a solution that caters to the entire complex scenario across all their operations.
Solution – A Dynamic Waste-Specific Solution
Your waste sites have a variety of facilities that operate in diverse ways and each one has specific requirements, so having software that is made to suit the waste industry and factors in all the variables and needs across your site is worth its weight in gold.
The money you save with a cheaper option will ultimately cost you in the long run and result in a less efficient and effective operation with regular frustrations and a longer amount of time being spent trying to get the software and infrastructure to do what you want it to do. You can avoid this and improve your operations by opting for a solution that’s suited to the waste industry.
How Mandalay Can Help
Mandalay offers a standard software solution that can be rolled out across all your facilities, and as your facilities and sites expand, you do not need to build something separate for each, the software you use simply extends from what you have already got.
We work with you to determine how our software can meet your varying needs and requirements. We are focused on looking at the several types of waste facility operations and tasks being conducted by our customers and then aligning the software to help in these areas. For example, this could include aligning the system to make operators more comfortable and confident to be able to get transactions happening quickly.
We believe that effective waste management software should be about optimising waste facility operations with a system to suit your processes and practices rather than your organisation having to reinvent them.
Challenge 3 – Poor Support to Overcome Problems
Your organisation faces various demands constantly, however not every waste facility has the support to effectively overcome any hurdles and get through the tasks they need to do. You need to know that if you or your team get stuck, you have somebody there that can help you out, but unfortunately that is not always the case.
Solution – Dedicated Support Team
Having support services in place that can back up your essential staff if they do not know how to do something required to run effectively. Whether it is making a change in the system or customising a report, it helps to speak to someone that can offer guidance through these processes to ensure these tasks are done effectively repeatedly.
How Mandalay Can Help
Here at Mandalay, your staff can rest assured that there is always a member of the Mandalay team available to help them out if they have a question or if they encounter an issue when using the software. When something goes wrong, we have a support team in place that will take the incident or issue and triage it. We have a team of staff that work together to assess the issue, work through it and identify the problem and potential solution.
Challenge 4 – A System That is Not Easy to Use
Are your gatehouse and admin staff struggling with a system that is not intuitive and has lots of unnecessary buttons and screens with complicated instructions to complete a simple task? Some software solutions are simply harder to use than they need to be. This can lead to frustration and a poor experience for your staff and customers overall.
Solution – An Intuitively Designed System
It is important to have a system that is as easy to use as possible and enables an operator to feel comfortable and less stressed. Even in a stressful environment, if you have a system with a lot of cues, less buttons to push and less decisions to make in the system to do the task at hand, that is going to be key to success.
How quickly you can get the customer in and out while touching the minimum number of buttons is what you should be aiming for as this tends to make your operators more relaxed, more comfortable and allows them to provide better customer service.
How Mandalay Can Help
At Mandalay, we spend a lot of time working with our customers to make sure that the back end is set up well for effortless operation. Our software aims to minimise the level of interaction with the system because it has all been predefined for them already. So, from an administration point of view, unnecessary decisions are taken away from operators and absorbed into the system, freeing up time and allowing you to do a better job, faster!
Challenge 5 – Troubleshooting Transaction & Finance Problems
All the critical aspects that affect how a council or organisation can get their invoices out and get paid, which is the goal, needs to be effectively managed for smooth operations. If you cannot transact properly or bill a customer, that is a critical problem.
If there is a problem raising an invoice or if there is something that has been triggered on the finance extract, the issue needs to be resolved quickly or prevented in the first place. If these problems occur frequently, a solution is needed urgently to ensure your finances are not in jeopardy.
Solution – Finance System Integration and Support
Finance teams need to ensure that the information being exported from the POS system can be integrated into their own finance system effectively so that they can raise their invoices without issue. This means investing in a software solution that integrates with your finance system and reduces the risk of manual errors. It also helps to have access to a support team if you encounter any system issues.
How Mandalay Can Help
You can streamline your payment processing and account management by integrating Mandalay’s Facility Product Suite with your finance system. With Finance Import/Export integration, payment processing and account management become simpler, the risk of errors from manually transferring finance data between systems is removed and you could export data in a format that is specific to your requirements. Mandalay’s support team is also on hand to help with any issues related to finance integration that you may face.
So what do you think, did you find these operations challenges & improvements accurate? Many challenges can be overcome, and improvements made by simply switching to or optimising your waste management software. Contact us and talk with our team for more information about how we can implement some of these solutions into your operations.