Operational Efficiency

Efficiency is about doing more for less. Efficiency can be measured by how much it costs to deliver a program compared to previous years or compared to peers, or the relative outcomes that governments obtain from a certain level of expenditure.  It's providing responsive and accountable government with demonstrated effectiveness through employee engagement and continuously improving service delivery, strengthening social programs, growing the economy, enhancing public safety, promoting environmental sustainability.


Completed property assessments
The mission of the Office of the Assessor is to produce an annual assessment roll in a timely, accurate, and efficient manner.  To accomplish the mission, the Assessor has the responsibility to locate all taxable property in the County, identify ownership, establish a value for all property subject to local taxation, list the value on the assessment roll, and apply all legal exemptions. The Santa Clara County Assessor does not compute property tax bills, collect property taxes, establish property tax laws, or rules by which property is assessed, or set property tax rates.  The assessments allow the County of Santa Clara to collect and allocate property tax revenue, which supports essential public services provided by the County, local schools, cities and special districts. 
Assessment appeals value retained
The Office of the Assessor tracks the percentage of assessed values that is retained after property owners appeals their property tax assessments.
Time to resolve and deliver appeals and assessments
The Office of the Assessor tracks the average number of days to resolve appeals and deliver supplemental assessments.

Clerk of the Board

Assessment Appeals Online Applications
In July 2019, the Clerk of the Board implemented its new Assessment Appeal Database Management system, (AADM) to facilitate the administration of the assessment appeal process. AADM enables members of the public to submit, edit, and track appeal applications online.
Additionally, submitting applications online improved accuracy by removing reliance on manual data entry by Clerk of the Board staff, and it also provides data validation for entries made by the applicant. To that end, the greater the percentage of online applications submitted, the greater the gains in efficiency to administer the appeals process, as less time is spent correcting information in the database.

County Communications

Employee recognition
In Fall 2018, the County launched the Employee Engagement and Well-Being Survey to gather information about the organization is doing when it comes to providing a healthy and engaging workplace.  The County Communications Department has a participation rate of 54% (n=61).  The Department identified employee recognition as an opportunity for growth.  Our baseline for employee recognition is 2.47 out of 5. 
Employee wellness and peer support
In 2022, County launched the Employee Engagement and Well-Being Pulse Survey to gather information about its workforce related to well-being and connection in the workplace.  The County Communications Department participation range from 41% (Pulse Survey 1) to 66% (Pulse Survey 3).  The Department identified overall well-being and support/care as an opportunity for growth.

County Counsel

Department satisfaction survey
The Office of the County Counsel is the chief legal advisor and representative for the County of Santa Clara, including the Board of Supervisors and all County agencies and departments. The Office seeks to provide the highest quality legal service to the Board of Supervisors and all County agencies/departments. The annual satisfaction survey seeks feedback on the Office’s legal advice and representation necessary to comply with all applicable laws, avoid legal risks, protect County resources, and best serve County residents.  Through use of the survey results, County Counsel strengthens communication with departments regarding each department’s legal needs and identifies opportunities to improve the quality of legal services.

Department of Child Support Services

Cases with an arrears payment benchmarked again state average
The Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) works to increase collection of past-due payment child support.  Increasing the percentage of custodial parents who receive a payment toward arrears means they will have more of the financial resources necessary to raise their children with the proper essentials (food, shelter, and clothing). This measure is benchmarked against the state average.
Child support paid benchmarked again state average
The Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) intends to increase the share of child support dollars collected owed for minor children on the agency caseload. This number is benchmarked against the state average and compared the Department's performance against other counties in California.

Emergency Medical Services

Reduce ambulance patient offload time to 25 minutes
The Emergency Medical Services (EMS) strives to reduce current ambulance patient offload time in all hospitals to 25 minutes or less (measured at the 90th percentile). On a monthly basis, the Department will determine the 90th percentile for all ambulance offload times by measuring time from the ambulance arrival at the hospital until the hospital assumes care.  This will improve the customer experience, the efficient allocation of resources, and timely access to EMS services.

Employee Services Agency

Employee retention
Employee Services Agency (ESA) plays a critical role in retaining the County's workforce by collaborating with departments on staff engagement, diversity, and inclusion initiatives. The Employee Services Agency measures the County's annual employee retention rate.  The annual retention rate is calculated by dividing the number of coded employees who remained employed throughout the entire measurement period by the total number of coded employees at the beginning of that measurement period.
Employee recruitment timely referral of eligible lists
The Employee Services Agency’s (ESA) Human Resources Department is responsible for providing an eligible list of candidates to departments when a request is submitted to fill a vacant position.  To provide effective and efficient recruitment services, ESA-HR’s goal is to refer candidates to departments within 90 days, from the time a request to fill a vacant position is received from the department to the time the department receives an eligible list from which to select a candidate.  ESA tracks the rate of timely referrals made within the 90-day period.

Facilities and Fleet

Ratio of preventative maintenance to unplanned repairs
The Facilities and Fleet Department Building Operations Division is responsible for maintenance management of County facilities. By performing on-time and effective preventive maintenance, facilities are safe and reliable to serve the public and County staff. Unplanned repair maintenance occurs for a variety of reasons, including system failures, end of useful life for equipment, and wear and tear. The Department records the ratio of preventative maintenance to unplanned repair maintenance. The industry standard for the ratio of preventive maintenance to unplanned repair maintenance is 6 to 1 (6:1). This benchmark demonstrates when the preventive maintenance schedule is met, unplanned repairs are less frequent.

Finance Agency

A verified index at seven business days from the day of recording
The County Clerk-Recorder focuses on improving the verification time for real estate recorded documents. The goal is to reduce the time to verify the index from the current 6 days to eventually 5 days. Although the documents are indexed within two business days, a verification of the index is performed to ensure its accuracy. An accurate index enhances the ability to research, locate, access, and retrieve recorded documents. An accurate index is critical to business operations in the Assessor's Office and other County departments and supports the County's focus on providing timely and quality services to clients.
Improve customer wait time (Tax and Collections)
The Department of Tax and Collections works to improve customer wait-time in the following Units: Court Collections, Legal and General, Medical, Public Assistance, Property Tax, and Cashier. The measurement will help the Department to continue improve the customer experience through a higher degree of efficiency.
Improve customer wait time (Clerk-Recorder)
The County Clerk-Recorder focuses on improving customer wait-time for the official records, vital records, fictitious business name, marriages, passports and other services the Department provides to County residents. This measure will help the Department determine the level of customer service, make necessary improvements, and increase efficiency.
Collections of victim restitution for affected victims of crime
The Department of Tax and Collections seeks, enforces, and monitors collections, including involuntary payment through garnishment and abstracts, to ensure that when people are convicted of crimes, they comply with the court’s order and pay restitution to their victims.  The Collections Division works alongside the Fiscal and Customer Service and Support Divisions to properly distribute the collected restitution funds to victims.
Maintain or improve the bond rating 
The Controller-Treasurer Department is the steward of the public's financial resources. The Department manages the County's financial affairs to obtain superior bond ratings for all debt issuances. The goal is to maintain or improve the County's bond rating for all debt issuances to ensure the cost of borrowing is as low as possible. Saving on interest allows the County to provide more services to its residents.
Maintain the County's financial transactions in accordance with the highest standards
The Finance Agency's mission includes fiscal leadership for the County.  The Department will develop and adhere to financial policies and procedures of the highest standards in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles to ensure prudent and transparent management of the public funds entrusted to our care.  Success will be determined by attaining the Award for County Financial Transaction Reporting by the Office of the California State Controller.
Obtain excellence awards for county-wide financial statements
The Finance Agency's mission includes fiscal leadership for the County. Therefore, the Department will prepare the Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) for the fiscal year (FY) and submit it for evaluation by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for consideration of their Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting. Success is determined by receipt of the Certificate of Achievement.

Medical Examiner-Coroner

Increasing Access To Medical Examiner-Coroner Death Data
The Medical Examiner-Coroner (ME-C) implemented a de-identified interactive dashboard with maps and an open dataset to provide the public with crucial information about deaths in the County of Santa Clara.  The case records provide a unique lens through which to examine the impacts of everything from suicides, drugs to cold-related deaths. The geographic data helps government agencies or nonprofits design interventions that target areas that need it most. The dashboard serves to increasing access to Medical Examiner/Coroner death data.

Percentage of Medical Examiner-Coroner Postmortem Examination Reports Closed Within 90-Days
The Medical Examiner-Coroner (ME-C) is actively working towards accreditation by the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME). The ME-C will measure the percentage of reports of postmortem examination completed within 90-days in accordance with NAME standard F.4.k which states that 90% of these reports are to be completed within 90-days.
Average number of Days to Close a Medical Examiner-Coroner Report of Postmortem Examination
The Medical Examiner-Coroner (ME-C) measures the average number of days to closure for all postmortem investigations.  Almost half of the 10,000 deaths in Santa Clara County (~5,000) in a year are reportable to ME-C.

Planning and Development

Permit processing time
The Department of Planning and Development measures the time it takes to process planning land use entitlements/permit and building/grading permits (entitlements) from the date of application to approval, to issuance. Reducing permit processing times for entitlements is one of the highest priorities for the Department in providing improved Customer Service. Improved permit processing is an indication of improved process efficiency and staff development. The Department is committed to reduce the permit processing time in a range of 10 – 40 percent, depending on the type of permit.

Probation Department

Improving probation client experience (Juvenile Hall)
In 2018, the Probation Department rolled out a pilot survey in the Juvenile Hall. This pilot led to the development of three separate surveys that cover the following operational areas:
  • Admissions and Clinic
  • Orientation, Housing and Safety
  • Programs and Services
Each survey is administered semi-annually on a rotating basis to all youth who reside in the Juvenile Hall.
Improving probation client experience (adult services)
In 2019, the Probation Department piloted a client experience survey based upon feedback from multiple stakeholders including clients, staff, and community stakeholders. This pilot led to a client experience survey that was one page.  This survey asks clients about their experiences related to getting to Probation, the physical space of the Probation buildings, interactions with staff and services received.
Improving probation client experience (James Ranch)
In November 2020, the Probation Department administered its first client experience survey to 35 youth at the James Ranch. The survey covered the following operational areas:
  • Orientation and admission
  • James Ranch policies and procedures
  • Facility cleanliness
  • Youths’ perceived safety and comfort
The survey is administered semi-annually to all youth at the James Ranch.


Cost saving and improvements through negotiated contractual agreements
The Procurement Department promotes the use of negotiations in non-competitive and competitive contract awards to realize tangible cost savings and contractual enhancements to benefit the County. Cost savings and other improvements to contracts will be tracked and reported.
Increase number of competitively awarded contracts
The Procurement Department will work to increase the number of competitively awarded contracts from sixty-five percent (65%) as accomplished in FY2021 to seventy percent (70%) in FY2022.

Roads and Airports

Pavement Condition Index
The Pavement Condition measure is commonly used in the pavement maintenance profession to indicate the condition on roads for the purpose of usability, lifespan, programming capital investments, measuring the cost liability of the road system. County roads are graded using a standardized method consistently utilized throughout the Bay Area cities and counties. The data is recorded as Pavement Condition Index (PCI). The PCI numerical rating for the condition of the roads is on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 is the worst possible condition and 100 is the best. PCI is used to develop budgets, identify preventive maintenance schedules and strategies, evaluate materials and designs, and provide a historical condition of the road.

Santa Clara Valley Health Care

Average total collection per month
Santa Clara Valley Health Care reviews the organization’s average monthly collection amount to measure revenue cycle efficiency. The average monthly collection amount is the aggregate amount of collections net of refund (minus retail pharmacy and outpatient renal dialysis) each month. A higher collection amount indicates a strong accounts receivable process and the ability to capture revenue for patient services previously rendered.
Net revenue per adjusted patient day
Santa Clara Valley Health Care (SCVHC) reviews the organization’s net revenue per adjusted patient day to monitor operational efficiency. Net revenue per adjusted patient days is a financial measure that normalizes the revenue collected across the health system for both inpatient and outpatient settings.  It is calculated by net revenue divided by the adjusted patient days. Adjusted patient days are calculated as inpatient days plus an adjusted factor for outpatient days (inpatient days multiplied by the outpatient revenue divided by inpatient revenue). The use of an adjustment factor shows the amount of payments SCVHC recognizes for patient and non-patient services across all settings.
Reduce utilization of outside hospitals and providers
Santa Clara Valley Health Care (SCVHC) continues work toward reducing utilization of outside hospitals and healthcare providers to deliver acute medical services, non-acute care, and other patient care services to assigned or delegated Medi-Cal patients managed by Valley Health Plan (VHP). Outside claims volume are monitored as an indicator of success in providing more integrated care and making more efficient use of internal resources, as well as an indicator of improved access and patient perception in choosing SCVHC as their care provider.

Sheriff's Office

Respond to inmate grievances within 30 days
The Office of the Sheriff measures the response rate of inmate grievances within 30 days. Grievance data is now provided via statistical reports to facility management and the public on a monthly basis as a way to monitor complaints and for optimum transparency.

Technology Services & Solutions

General satisfaction of services
To ensure healthy customer relationships, one of Technology Services and Solutions’ (TSS) primary goals is customer satisfaction. TSS conducts a quarterly customer satisfaction survey which, over the course of a year, gives all our customers an opportunity to provide critical feedback about the services and products TSS delivers. One of the persistent survey questions asks our customers whether, given the choice, they would continue to use TSS as an IT service provider. Using this KPI, we monitor general client satisfaction within any given quarter and track this measure over time to establish a trendline. For an organization our size and with our diverse customer base, TSS regularly scores higher –than industry on this critical measure.
Technical support: IT customer ticket satisfaction
In December 2021, TSS initiated a new customer satisfaction (CSAT) survey for our IT ticketing system.  Every ticket is evaluated for a survey.  Surveys are sent out based on a frequency algorithm for the end user. The surveys allow TSS to receive instant feedback on our support and understanding the end user experience.  The survey consists of five questions based on timeliness and resolution satisfaction.  The CSAT survey is the average score of these five questions.  CSAT is key to measure because customer satisfaction is one of the driving goals for our TSS teams.  In addition, CSAT measurement also helps identify potential organizational gaps around technical problems, staffing and process issues. 
Technical support: Ticket volume
In a service organization, the Ticket Volume KPI measures inbound requests to the Service Desk and other TSS support teams in a given period. It can also be used to measure unplanned activities (e.g., service interruptions or security incidents) that may require attention. This data allows us to focus on operational improvement efforts, determine staffing levels, and improve the overall user experience.

Valley Health Plan

Resources improvement, recruitment and retention
The Valley Health Plan is committed to retaining and promoting valuable employees, recruiting and hiring the most qualified; assuring effective leadership qualities in our managers; and furnishing technical, interpersonal, and career development training and coaching for our workforce.  We will meet these goals by: (1) establish a training program for employees that encourage professional development; (2) develop and implement a departmental Onboarding Plan; (3) progress toward a highly engaged workforce, as measured by the Gallup Employee Engagement and Well-Being Survey, and provide opportunity for staff’s perspective on organization; and (4) develop targeted staff training focusing on regulatory and service improvement to create a more viable and engaged workforce to serve the membership.