Mayor Andre Dickens’ Institute of Professional Development—spearheaded by the Department of Human Resources (DHR)—continues to deliver results in improving City services while also serving as a career ladder for employees. Employees volunteer to participate in the professional development and work on Saturdays or after hours to learn new skills and receive a certification when the session is complete.
In late August 2023, the Institute of Professional Development held its second “graduation” ceremony for the special Finance Academy edition. Focusing on the Department of Finance (DOF), 29 graduates were cross-trained and upskilled in accounts payable, payroll and customer services processes. Within five weeks—with an eight week deadline—DOF graduates processed more than 15,000 invoices with a financial impact of roughly $479 million. DOF has also reduced accounts payable processing cycle times and will be implementing an improved process for FY 2024 to ensure all invoices are paid within net 30.
The Institute’s inaugural class focused on the Department of City Planning, operating an eight-week permitting model to train Building and Development Coordinators in a new role offering a single point of contact for customers and all agencies. Graduates will manage application intake, route applications to reviewers and measure project application status against agreed timelines for each step in the process for a seamless customer experience.
Trainees worked over a period of eight Saturdays and cleared a backlog of 3,000 permit applications—mostly due to missing applicant info. As a result, the City added $1.3 billion in construction value and over $9 million in revenue.