July 15, 2013
By Terry Murphy CLP

Terry MurphyOne of the key statistics that I always watch for at year-end is the number of utility hits that the green (landscape/fencing) industry has accumulated over the last year.
I always compare this number to the previous year to see if we have reduced our hits.

When you look at this data, one may conclude that we slightly increased our landscape sector hits, and the green industry total hits have gone up by about 10 per cent. The landscape sector is up only one per cent, from 360 to 364. I looked at the data, and naturally was disappointed with the results, hoping for a continuous downward trend for our sector. With a lot of effort last year, I thought we might have gone down in hits. Was I missing anything?

The thought occurred to me that our hits may have gone up just a little, but was our performance improving? What about the total number of locates requested. It occurred to me that you can’t use the absolute number of hits alone to measure our efficiency or productivity. It must be compared to the total number of locates that are requested.

When you look at the number of landscape hits, based on the overall number, the following conclusions may be found in the Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) Report by ORCGA.
  • The green industry has increased its overall hits from 685 to 754 and also the efficiency has gone down .022 from 0.938, based on the total locate requests.
  • The landscape sector has remained relatively the same in utility hits (364 from 360) in the last year, but since the total locate requests have increased from 730,715 to 765,345 (4.7%), our efficiency and productivity have increased.
  • The landscape sector continues to make positive progress over the last year.
GREEN INDUSTRY UTILITY HITS Total hits Change Landscape hits Percentage increase
2009 914 N/A 542 +38%
2010 716 -22% 360 -34%
2011 685 -5% 360 NIL
2012 758 +10% 364 +1%

Your suggestions and comments are welcomed at tvmurphy@ca.inter.net.