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Waitakere City Council

Not all jobs undertaken by Orbit require complex mathematical or engineering solutions. A recent project for Waitakere City Council, before the amalgamation of the Auckland councils into one unitary body, required a software programme which helped staff to manage an asset register.

The Parks division of the Council was statutorily required to maintain a register of the state and condition of the assets for which it was responsible. Orbit developed a system whereby Parks staff could enter their observations into a laptop on site. The details were then synchronised with the asset management system back in the office. The system was easy to use and double handling and data entry errors were eliminated.

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The Parks division of Waitakere City Council (before it became part of the Auckland supercity) was required by law to maintain an asset register which recorded every asset for which it was responsible and an up-to-date record of its condition.

These details were regularly updated by staff who made site visits to check the existing recorded information against the condition of the actual physical asset. The staff were responsible for either verifying the existing data or noting any changes such as deterioration, damage or other change. The asset register itself was only accessible via terminals in the Council’s offices. Staff had to make paper notes when they were on site and, on their return to the office, use those notes to revise and update the records. This process was inefficient. It required double-handling of the information and would often result in data entry errors.

The Council required a new, more efficient and reliable system and asked Orbit Systems to help.


Orbit designed a new Asset Management system in MS Access and MS Visual Basic. A staff member would take a mirror image of the application on their laptop with MS Access and take the laptop with them to on-site inspections. They would then enter the details of the asset directly into their laptop to update the information. On their return to the office the updates are automatically synchronised with the master system.

Some of the key features included:

  • simplicity of UI and data entry with drop-down boxes and built-in error checking
  • ‘bullet-proof’ interface to prevent accidental change of data
  • compatible with various versions of MS Office
  • dynamic data screens to control lists that are visible and fields to display
  • search functions for searching assets at a single location or locations of a particular asset.

In summary the system was designed to make it as simple to use as possible with failsafe systems to prevent unwanted overwrites or damage to existing data.


Waitakere City Council implemented the new system to keep its Parks asset register up to date with significant improvements in record accuracy and timeliness.