Established in 1795, Maryville is a rapidly growing city and home to over 28,000 residents at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. With its motto, “People are the Key,” the City of Maryville aims to grow for high performance, operational effectiveness, and excellent constituent services to its citizens.

Currently staffed with five professionals, the City’s IT Department is responsible for hardware, software, and networking infrastructure, as well as supports technical services to over 300 employees from all city departments and elected officials.

As the city continued to grow and the economy kept flourishing, the City of Maryville felt pressure to keep up with higher service level expectations while adhering to traditionally shrinking budgets and staffing levels.

Additionally, the organization’s underlying technology platform had failed to keep pace with industry changes, leaving crucial gaps in functionality and processes that disrupted business operations and service delivery city-wide.

The City of Maryville’s IT environment endured the following shortages:

  • Lack of city-wide electronic document management capabilities and limited utilization of OnBase workflow capabilities
  • Significantly unsupported financial ERP and HRMS systems
  • Utility billing system that was four versions behind in upgrades
  • Lack of time and attendance systems to track labor hours city-wide
  • Absence of automated workflow capabilities for business processes, such as legislative management and administration
  • Lack of comprehensive fiber optic network management strategy
  • Incompatibility of development services’ permitting and tracking system to the City’s GIS platform as well as a utility billing system
  • Lack of field mobility and GIS integration
  • Unavailability of documentation for the City’s network, hardware, software, infrastructure as well as IT policies and procedures
  • An overall deficiency of leveraged utilization and integration of the implementing applications

The city relied on the consulting experience and services of Avèro Advisors in 2018 to initiate an IT Strategic Planning (ITSP) project that led the city to move forward with prioritized recommendations for IT investment over the next three to five years.

Taking an in-depth look into every angle of the IT environment that had furnished the city, Avèro analyzed and made several high-level observations of the critical challenges and opportunities for improvement to mitigate the gaps in functionality and processes.

Based on key findings from the current state analysis (at that time), Avèro’s team targeted those deficiencies and identified potential improvements for alleviating gaps and system maintenance. Further, Avèro offered IT solutions that provided more exceptional ability to integrate with other systems and aligned technology investments, regional goals, and executive priorities with the City’s future vision.

Avèro currently serves as the City of Maryville’s project manager and has assisted in administering the implementation of the ITSP. This partnership has led to the following collaborative achievements thus far.

Upgrading Maryville’s Utility Billing System

The City’s version of Cayenta was at least four upgrades behind, lacked several enhanced features, and could not interface with other systems. In February 2019, the City successfully upgraded the new version of Cayenta after all the essential implementation planning and staff training procedures were complete.

The latest upgrade allows the City to seamlessly integrate the system and related processes with its future ERP system, outage management system, and advanced metering infrastructure (AMI). This upgrade also provides various enhanced features on the customer side, such as reviewing historical usage, past bills, etc., to enhance functionality for staff and citizen-facing portals.

Implementation of a New Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System

GEMS, the City’s financial ERP (and HRMS) system, lacked workflow and automation for various critical business processes, such as work order management, fleet management, plant accounting, and asset management. Furthermore, vendor support of the current GEMS version ended in 2018, which led the City in an ambiguous direction.

Avèro has performed Business Process Analysis across many City departments, including financial services, procurement, human resources, development services, public works, fleet, and public utilities. This analysis enabled Avèro to identify current limitations and map out the future state of critical business processes.

In 2020, Avèro successfully guided the City through system requirements definition, RFP development, ERP system evaluation, and selection for various enterprise solutions (i.e., financial, procurement, human resources, fleet, and asset management).

Avèro will assist the City through contract negotiations with the selected vendors, which include Tyler Technologies and CSA, and subsequently provide project management support for these system implementations.

Improving Services Through MACnet (Maryville-Alcoa-County Network)

Avèro has aided the City’s electric department with mapping and splicing services for MACnet, a shared fiber-optic network between the City of Maryville, City of Alcoa, and Blount County. Avèro’s team currently performs fiber mapping over Maryville and some parts of Blount County as well as fiber routing and/or risk reduction of the Pershing Academy Learning in Alcoa.

Avèro will maintain and extend MACnet’s optical fiber ring to deliver more computing power and enable local government agencies to provide efficient services for better communication, coordination, and planning related to this vital asset at a reasonable cost.

Maryville, Tennessee

“As you know, many companies are technically strong in all things IT but not every firm can build the relationships necessary to help an organization navigate change. Avero excelled in this aspect. Technically strong, depth of knowledge, and an ability to speak in a language management can understand. They don’t use only industry terms. They took us through some discovery to make sure we got the scope right. This was incredibly important to the overall project. ”

Greg McClain

City Manager

City of Maryville

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