Office of Environmental Management

Creative Oak Ridge Employees Consolidate Space, Saving Taxpayer Dollars

October 1, 2019

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Isotek, a contractor for Oak Ridge’s EM program, recognized Donna Stringfield, left, and Micelle McDaniels for their idea that led to a threefold increase in storage space at a facility, saving approximately $110,000 over the next five years.
Isotek, a contractor for Oak Ridge’s EM program, recognized Donna Stringfield, left, and Micelle McDaniels for their idea that led to a threefold increase in storage space at a facility, saving approximately $110,000 over the next five years.

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. – Innovative solutions by employees in Oak Ridge are leading to approximately $110,000 in savings over the next five years.

The initiative of two Isotek employees, Donna Stringfield and Micelle McDaniels, led to a solution that is avoiding costs and saving tax dollars. Isotek is responsible for completing the uranium-233 disposition project for Oak Ridge’s EM program.

“Proposals like this reflect the mindset instilled in Oak Ridge’s federal and contractor employees,” said Jay Mullis, manager of the Oak Ridge Office of EM. “We are proud that employees are thinking critically and focused on being responsible stewards of tax dollars. That is important and crucial to our ongoing progress at the site, no matter the size of the project.”

While many challenges in the EM complex often come from cleanup sites, this one originated from an office setting.

Paperwork generated from the long-running, complex uranium-233 disposition project is substantial. The documents are stored in an off-site storage facility, which was nearing full capacity this year as paperwork continued to arrive for storage.

Instead of renting additional space, Stringfield and McDaniels, who work in the company’s Office of Records Management and Document Control, proposed purchasing a shelving system and lift for the off-site storage facility. Isotek agreed to their proposal and purchased the system and lift.

The improvements tripled the capacity of the previous space, avoiding the cost of renovations or renting more space.

The shelves allow boxes of documents to be stacked eight boxes high in a more organized manner. The lift enables easy access to boxes up to 10 feet off the ground. Before the changes, the boxes were stacked on the ground, about four or five boxes high.

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