City of Davis Case Study

Implements WaterTrax to Manage Their Well Water Quality Data and Establish Process in the Organization

WaterTrax creates a system that makes the data collection consistent and establishes a discipline in our operation.

Bob Schoech, Principal Utility Program Supervisor, City Of Davis

The Challenge

Sourcing its municipal water supply from 22 individual wells gave the City of Davis, California, too many opportunities for confusion – if not error – in its management of water quality data. Utility managers used an MS Access database developed in-house, but that was not the solution. “I was having trouble finding things in Access,” says Bob Schoech, Principal Utility Program Supervisor for the city, which services a population of 66,000. “Sometimes I couldn’t find what I was looking for and when I did it was occasionally in duplicate.” To improve productivity and efficiency, Mr. Schoech thought of developing a better database application internally, but didn’t pursue it because “there are never enough IT resources around.” He also recognized that in-house development is rarely on time or on budget.

The Solution

When he saw a WaterTrax demonstration at one of the CA-NV AWWA annual conferences, his first thought was that WaterTrax’s Internet-based approach to service delivery was the way of the future – in all aspects of business and personal life, not just in water andwastewater management. “I knew how I could use this technology right away,” he recalls. “One of my goals at the utility was to instill some process.

While I originally set up a system that carefully identified the wells, over time samples would get labeled differently. Small changes to the identification of the wells crept in and made it difficult to query and find data that made sense.” “WaterTrax creates a system that makes the data collection consistent and establishes a discipline in our operation.” He appreciates the automatic notification he receives when a water quality result is outside the utility’s normal operating range, especially the emails that reach him wherever he is. “We try to be diligent,” he says, “yet it can be difficult to manually screen water quality results against the MCLs when there is so much data to deal with.”

The Benefits

“I now know immediately when a sample might be close to the MCL, and being able to monitor this effortlessly is important to us. Knowing that I’m not missing any exceedance helps me sleep at night. With WaterTrax, we’ve not only significantly improved our ability to monitor the health of our wells, but also our ability to respond if and when necessary” said Bob Schoech.

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