Recology has a longstanding history of embracing innovation to solve today’s most pressing environmental challenges. Over the past decade, they have successfully pioneered ‘zero waste’ strategies which have redefined the waste management industry through their focus on diverting waste from landfills with reuse, recycling, and composting programs. Today, with more than 1.1 million residential and commercial customers and more than 40 operating companies, Recology has become a leader in developing and discovering sustainable resource recovery practices that can be implemented globally.
While Recology was experiencing rapid growth and expansion throughout California, Washington and Oregon, they were beginning to feel the implications of a rapidly changing environmental compliance landscape taking shape in the waste management industry. More than ever, waste and recycling companies were facing enormous pressure to keep up with the escalating number, scope, and complexity of environmental requirements. Not only were they being held accountable for much more stringent quality standards, but the amount of regulatory scrutiny and legal risk surrounding their environmental compliance programs was at an all time high.
Given the sharp increases in compliance demands, Recology realized it needed to embrace digital transformation to help them mitigate the rising costs and complexity of environmental compliance. After decades of relying heavily on traditional compliance processes that involved a lot of manual effort and paperwork, Recology’s South Group launched an initiative to completely digitize their SPCC compliance operations across their South Bay area facilities by partnering with Mapistry.
Previously, Recology’s South Group used multiple, disparate information systems to ensure their SPCC requirements were being met including paper forms, binders, one-to-one emails and phone calls. For example, to complete mandatory facility inspections, staff would be required to walk the site with a paper form, take pictures, notate deficiencies, re-enter all that information into spreadsheets, and then follow-up with emails and calls to ensure any corrective actions and issues were resolved. This workflow made SPCC compliance a daunting task for already busy internal teams and made it challenging for leadership to easily track performance.
“We needed more visibility into our compliance operations to ensure that our checklist was being followed and tasks were being completed on-time,” added Chris Gibson, Group Environmental Manager for Recology’s South Group.
Maximizing compliance efficiency with a digital solution
To improve their SPCC compliance processes and paperwork, Recology’s South Group partnered with Mapistry to deploy a single, easy-to-use software solution to help them automate and centralize the way they manage and track their SPCC compliance lifecycle from start to finish.
Now, instead of grappling with paper forms and spreadsheets for routine inspections, corrective actions and tasks, Recology’s South Group can empower its team with an automated workflow to quickly and accurately perform these tasks with a few clicks. Staff can instantly capture inspections, take pictures, and assign corrective actions using any smartphone, tablet or computer. This not only reduces the amount of time and effort spent on inspections, it also strengthens communication and collaboration across the team. “We now have a stronger program because we can complete the monthly inspections with Mapistry, saving me and my team time. I can also login to check that tasks are being completed on-time, from anywhere,” detailed Gibson.
Recology also quickly realized that they could take advantage of Mapistry’s analytics dashboard to track the performance of inspection results and corrective actions in real-time across their South Bay facilities. This enables the team to easily visualize, analyze and assign accountability of compliance obligations. It also gives them the confidence of knowing that tasks are being completed according to quality standards — without requiring them to call or drive around to chase status updates from each of their facilities. They can also maximize site performance and resource utilization by identifying trends and proactively deploying solutions to promote improvement.
Another advantage of adopting Mapistry’s SPCC Suite was being able to digitize their regular SPCC planning and site map updates, which has helped them dramatically reduce the amount of time and effort spent on these activities. What would have taken them hours to create using more manual tools, now takes them minutes to update in a digital format. Plus, staff always has access to the most complete, accurate, and up-to-date versions of their compliance data and documents stored centrally in Mapistry’s records repository. Therefore, they don’t have to risk important compliance documents or data getting lost in the paper shuffle again.
Lastly, the Recology team has also benefited from having access to the support and regulatory expertise of Mapistry’s services team of environmental experts. Backed by additional technical support and regulatory knowledge of permit rules and limits, Recology can eliminate guesswork and build a stronger line of defense against regulator scrutiny. Ultimately, having the combination of Mapistry’s software platform and regulatory expertise has equipped the Recology team with the tools they need to advance their environmental compliance programs and operations. As a result, they become even more efficient and effective. Also, they can now proactively monitor the health of their compliance program and limit risk.