Chester County’s Department of Computer and Information Systems cuts 15 jobs

The downsizing of Chester County’s Department of Computer and Information Systems continues, with the county announcing the layoffs of more than a dozen workers in that office last week.

Mark Rupsis, the county’s chief administrative officer, said in an interview that 15 full time employees were let go on Monday, Nov. 14, in an effort to both save money and streamline the department in recognition of newer technologies that allows the department to do the same amount of work with fewer people.

“We don’t need as many people now,” Rupsis said.

The move last week marked the second time in three years that the county has let go a group of employees from the department, which is responsible for all the county’s computer, telephone, technology, and data-based services. In September 2009, 14 full-and-part-time employees were let go.

The department now has 75 employees, down from more than 100 in 2009. Although Rupsis said that the county has shed dozens of full and part time positions since the financial meltdown of 2008, the computers and information department is the only one that has had actual layoffs. Other downsizing has occurred through retirements, resignations, or terminations for cause.

Rupsis said that last week’s action would allow the county to save $1 million in salary and benefit costs. Many of the workers were personal computer technicians, while some worked on telephone service projects.

“The goal is to spend our dollars better,” Rupsis said. “We tried to see whether we could reduce costs and still do our job better” with new industry standards and technological advances. He compared it to needing only one person to push a button accomplishing a task that a decade ago would have needed five people to press five buttons.

Meanwhile, the department also announced on Wednesday a reorganization of top administrators that creates a new deputy director responsible for IT audits in county government, and splits other tasks between two deputy directors.

Glenn Angstadt, the department’s director, said in a memo sent to department staff members that the new position, which was given to a current employee, Tina Becker, will be responsible for ensuring that department initiatives are performed in accordance with accepted IT standards.

Source: Delco Times