Friday, January 14, 2011

BUTLER COUNTY: Auditor’s Office Putting Efficiency to Work in Online Dog Tag Sales

 Internet sales have jumped in popularity in just three years 

HAMILTON, Ohio – The Butler County Auditor’s Office began selling dog tags over the Internet in 2009. Of the 38,294 tags sold that year, 6,354 were online sales. In just six weeks of the 2011 tag year, the Auditor’s Office has already sold more than 7,100 online.
“It speaks to the efficiency of the office,” says Consumer Services Director Tom Kamphaus. “We have been putting the word out regarding online sales, and it helps our office save time and money. Besides, it is more convenient to the customer.”
When county dog owners buy tags online it means county office workers put less hours into data entry and opening mail. It also means less postage costs and envelope usage for consumers, providing an “everyone wins” scenario.
County Auditor Roger Reynolds’ conservative philosophy is felt when it comes to technology and efficiency. “Our office is constantly utilizing technology to make things run more effectively. At a time when we are looking at ways to trim our budget and save taxpayers money, any way we can save time on the county end and save money on the consumer end is a double bonus for county residents.” Auditor Reynolds observes.
The Consumer Services Division routinely mails out renewal notices every year to dog owners. When a renewal is performed online, the owner’s e-mail is captured. Thus, the renewal will be sent via e-mail the next year, saving postage. “The more we sell online, the more postage we save taxpayers at the county level and at their home.” Reynolds says. “That is why we are serious in getting out the word regarding online sales.”
Besides efficiency, cost savings and convenience, online sales also eliminate mail mistakes and lessen possible input errors. And the online procedure is very secure, Kamphaus notes. “It actually is more secure online than sending your check in the mail.”
Reynolds’ office has been using technology in many ways – from the GIS department mapping system to the county payroll department – to make the county run more smoothly, safely and cost-efficiently. Auditor Reynolds, who has slashed his budget back to 2000 levels, is determined to keep his office running strong but keep the budget down. “In these tough economic times, we need to be creative to deliver the same services in the least expensive way. Technology can be a key.”