Well, 2020 was definitely a year unlike any other. The pandemic was a raging bolt that surprised us all. This sudden turn of events brought disruption never witnessed previously to our current way of life. Tragically many lives were lost, unemployment soared and businesses either closed or were forced to modify their operating practices. A new normal evolved; to curb the spread of covid-19 people grappled with undertaking their daily activities differently. The optimistic news is that with the manufacturing of several Covid-19 vaccines being 90% or 95% efficacy, some semblance of normalcy may return in 2021.
As businesses adjusted to the new normal, Dial Before You Dig (DBYD) adhered and continued to operate upon advice provided by Federal and State health agencies to ensure continuity of service and the health and safety of staff and the community. The DBYD online referral service and the Help Desk (1100, Toll Free) continued to operate as normal.
The Referral Service of the Future was a major project initiated this year and despite the pandemic, continued to be on budget and on track to go live July 1st, 2021. As part of the transition process to the Referral Service of the Future and to ensure the DBYD service could continue to be provided as a free service, effective 1st October all DBYD enquiries were now required to be lodged online. This change over occurred smoothly with little to no disruption to users. The Help Desk continues to be available to assist users with their enquiries and operates toll free during business hours. Staff worked remotely and adjustments were initiated to conduct business as usual. To ensure continuation and promotion of the safe excavation message the state DBYD teams adapted fittingly by offering awareness presentations either online or via USB stick. DBYD was exceptionally fortunate that business operations were able to continue with minimal disruption and that continued use of the referral service and membership growth remained steady for the year.
The pandemic has been challenging for many, so please take the time to look after your own wellbeing and the wellbeing of your family and colleagues. On behalf of all the Dial Before You Dig staff, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all our Members and users for their ongoing support during the last 12 months. We wish you and your families good health and to stay safe this festive season and we look forward to working with you all again in 2021.