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Case Study

Striving for a ‘One Utility, One Platform’ Approach at Halifax Water

Streamlining data management at Nova Scotia’s largest water utility

AUTHOR

Related Topics

One Water

Data Integration

Serving a population of more than 350,000, Halifax Water manages 8 water supply plants, 14 wastewater treatment facilities and more than 1,500 km of water mains in Canada’s second-fastest growing municipality, all of which must be constantly monitored for compliance through a rigorous sampling program.

THE CHALLENGE

Getting those thousands of data points in front of the right people can be a challenge, especially when you consider the patchwork of offline and online systems that water workers like McKnight have to navigate.

The result was a work process that, from a data and reporting perspective, was unsustainable in a few ways:

  • Sampling data remained difficult to access, having data in so many locations and formats makes it difficult to pull the data together for comparison and analysis, especially when it is needed quickly.
  • Spreadsheets were being used as databases, creating data opacity and discouraging proactive data management.
  • Even when users could get data in and out of the system, it wasn’t built for collaboration and often became disorganised with too many hands in the pot.

THE SOLUTION

Halifax Water set out to transform the way it manages its water data, merging multiple data sources and processes into a single collaborative platform and paving the way for a more proactive, collaborative and resilient water data management program. 

To do that, the utility turned to Klir, an operating system (OS) which integrates compliance, sampling and all other aspects of water and wastewater data management into one integrated, centralised and easy to use system.

RESULTS

With Klir, Halifax Water foresees making serious progress on its goals to encourage interdepartmental collaboration as a One Water utility, setting the stage for further data integration in the near future, as well as:

  • Adopting a proactive approach to problem solving, helping it maintain water of high quality for its customers and the environment.
  • Decreasing dependence on individuals, reducing the risk of information loss.
  • Creating a single source of truth, avoiding overlapping or contradictory reporting and streamlining the compliance process as a whole.
  • Using fewer apps to build a system that is easier to use, takes less training time to master, and is better prepared from an audit and security perspective.
  • Breaking down departmental silos and promoting collaboration, allowing the utility to deliver on its One Water, One Data vision.

One of the difficulties with diving into the digital world is that you end up having an app for this, and then an app for that. The fact that Klir had so many different modules that can talk and communicate with each other was really appealing to us.

– Adam McKnight, Data Analyst, Halifax Regional Water Commission’s Water Quality Programs
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