(Lincoln) Over the last two years, nearly $7.3 million dollars has been realized from public auction sales of State surplus property. Since 2008, net sales have steadily increased due to innovative cost-saving measures and a renewed focus on customer service. In 2008 and 2009, two-year proceeds at public auctions were a little over $5.1 million dollars.
“Creating a customer-focused culture is a priority for our agency,” said Byron Diamond, Department of Administrative Services Director. “We are continually looking for ways to innovate processes and create additional cost efficiencies to provide the best possible products and services for our customers.”
Cost-saving Initiatives that have led to increased revenue include:
Utilizing technology to expedite the recording of surplus property.
Offering online bid opportunities for selling specialty items.
Improving the aesthetics of the warehouse by adding windows and installing large ceiling fans.
Utilizing a slideshow to feature some of the many items available at each auction. The slideshow is posted to the State and auctioneer’s website two weeks prior to the auction.
Eliminating the existing salvage contract, which resulted in a savings of $38,000 a year, and increase revenues by selling salvage items at public auction.
Enhancing how items are displayed and secured which allowed the auction to run more efficiently while decreasing the number of thefts that occurred during public viewing or prior to the auction.
Researching items up for sale to determine what is the best process where the State and taxpayers would get the best return on investment for the item.
Selling a vehicle at all furniture auctions which helps attract more customers and allowing more opportunities for customers to purchase a vehicle throughout the year.
Adjusting product placement in the warehouse to meet customer needs and improve the flow of the auction.
Improving the presentation of items available for sale including detailing all vehicles sold at auction. Vehicle detailing has increased the sale price as well as the number of car dealerships who attend the auction.
Purchasing storage pods which allows for more surplus storage in-between sales.
Utilizing the Department of Correctional Services work release program to add additional staffing.
Enhancing customer service by contacting customers on specialty or specific items up for auction and asking customers to complete a survey.
Building and enhancing better relationships with all State agencies.
Evaluating trade-ins on State-owned vehicles to determine if the State would receive a better monetary value with trading in a vehicle instead of selling it at public auction.
“Our goal is to keep the taxpayer in mind at all times, they are our number one priority. We continually research to determine the best ways to list and sell items to get the most money back for the taxpayers,” said Dave McGuire, Surplus Manager for the Department of Administrative Services.
Surplus Property, a service provided by the Department of Administrative Services, was created by statute to dispose of or sell surplus and unused state property in the most advantageous manner to both the State of Nebraska and taxpayers.
Items sold at auction include computers, vehicles, furniture, office supplies, etc., which are no longer utilized by State agencies and items that have been confiscated by State Patrol that must be sold at auction. Any revenue raised from the sale of items is then returned to each agency’s fund from where the property was originally purchased.
The State hosts approximately 16 auctions each year to include two vehicle and heavy equipment auctions and a livestock auction located at Fort Robinson State Historical Park.
For more information, bidding opportunities, or a schedule of upcoming auctions please visit the Surplus Property webpage at http://das.nebraska.gov/materiel/surplus/index.html. The State Surplus Warehouse is located at: 5001 South 14th Street, Lincoln, NE.