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Norfolk County plans to re-align a number of its departments and shrink its physical footprint in an effort to deliver more efficient service to the community and become more financially sustainable.

The plan includes a remote work strategy that will see many staff work at least part of the week from home, allowing for the better use of existing space across County facilities.

Staff in a number of departments will move from their current locations and be co-located with staff in areas that share common service goals, fostering increased collaboration and innovation.

Additionally, changes to internal reporting structures in key areas will allow the County to better respond to the needs of the community.

The public showed strong support for consolidating County operations and reducing physical footprint in the recent 2021 budget engagement survey.

Details of the plan will be presented to Council on Oct. 13.

“Simply put, our plan is focused on making Norfolk County a much more efficient, innovative and resilient organization,” says Jason Burgess, Norfolk’s CAO. “We want the right people working together to come up with creative ways to address the needs of this community. Additionally, by shrinking our physical footprint and better using our space, we’ll also find operational efficiencies that will aid in our return to sound financial footing.”

The changes will take place in stages over the coming months, and will include:

  • The re-alignment of various departments to create new teams with existing staff. Some examples are:
    • One dedicated to public works and community operational activities (i.e. grass cutting, snow plowing, park maintenance)
    • One focused on the strategic management of capital projects and assets (i.e. engineering, environmental services)
    • One team focused on creating complete communities (planning, building, recreation and culture).
  • The permanent establishment of a centralized customer service program, eliminating the need for the public to call or visit multiple staff or facilities for municipal services
  • The moving of many staff teams, including the re-location of the Fire Department headquarters and Paramedic Services headquarters from Simcoe to the Delhi Administration Building (the Simcoe fire station and paramedic base will remain)
  • County staff permanently moving out of the Langton Administration Building and the Simcoe Adult Community Centre

“The next few months will see a significant change in the way Norfolk County operates,” says Burgess. “But through the better alignment and integration of our teams, we’ll be in a much better position to achieve our most important goal: providing excellent service to this community.”