In 1982, the City purchased a computerized financial system from Computer Resource
Management Corporation (CRMC). This system replaced a key-punch card system.
The conversion process took about a year to complete. Then, just as the conversion
was completed, CRMC filed for bankruptcy.
The City opted to acquire the programming source code from CRMC and took on the
responsibility of supporting the software. The Software Development wing
of IT was born.
The Software Development group today is one of three subdivisions
of Information Technology. It is staffed with four Senior IT analysts
and one supervising analyst.
The Software Development group is responsible for the development
and support of software needs for the City’s internal departments.
As the City has historically been referring to Software Development
in relation to its financial applications, many requests are
for enhancements to the City’s Financial system, which
includes modules for General Ledger, Accounts Payable, Accounts
Receivable, Payroll, Budget, Fixed Assets, Utility Billing (water,
sewer, and garbage services), Payments Processing and Business
In recent times however, the group has been taking on more and
more projects that are not directly related to the City’s
financial system. For example, we recently developed an application
for the tracking and management of the City’s low-flow toilets
replacement program – a water conservation program offered
for free to Redwood City’s water customers. We have also
taken on support of the internal GIS program.
In addition to supporting the software needs of the City’s
internal departments, the Software Development group also sells
software support and development services to other agencies. Our
clients include South Bayside System Authority, the cities of Burlingame,
South San Francisco and San Bruno, and the Bay Area Water Supply
and Conservation Agency (BAWSCA).
The City’s financial system is undoubtedly of the “legacy” generation.
Some of our efforts have to do with modernizing existing features
for our Intranet portal – a set of web-based applications
for use by internal City staff. We are also looking at ways to
make it easier for the Redwood City resident community to conduct
financial and other transactions with the City. In recent years,
we have developed applications for business owners to renew their
Business Licenses via our website, and for Utility customers to
sign up for electronic bills*.
A longer term effort will likely involve looking at a conversion
of the City’s financial system. We expect to be directly
involved in every step of the way, from the evaluation of the City’s
needs to the actual implementation of a new system.
But it is becoming clear that, even if faced with a financial
system conversion in our future, the group is likely to see an
increase in service needs that are less financial in nature – just
as the financial applications support needs disappear. Far
from reducing our work force, we are preparing for a time when
our ability to deliver more varied applications may instead lead
to a restructuration of the I.T. division with a single Internet/Software
services subdivision that will bring higher revenue to the City,
as “software” comes to mean any automated application
dreamed by our users.
* This service is available to Redwood City Utility customers
who have elected automatic payment services out of their bank account.
For information about, or to sign up for, automatic payment services,