Monthly Archives: October 2013

Positive Energy: How To Change Your Office for the Better

Gratitude Journal

“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” – Anais Nin.

Sure, it may sound easy to “stay positive,” but when the office is swirling with citizen complaints, you’re stuck in the red tape, your computer has a meltdown, or you are one man down, it can be difficult to remain optimistic. However, that’s exactly when it is most important to remain positive!

Research has shown that the benefits of positivity in the workplace are endless.  Just merely going through the motions can actually trigger feelings of happiness.  A happy workplace results in increased productivity, fewer sick days, feelings of security, and positive conflict resolution. Read more >

Posted in City Clerk Cafe, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Small Town Stories: Plevna, Montana

We are excited to welcome the town of Plevna, Montana to our Black Mountain Software family. While the Plevna School District, home of the Cougars, has been a software client of ours since 2009, we are thrilled that the town of Plevna itself is also joining our BMS family of customers.

Plevna, with a population of 162 and 90 utility customers, occupies Fallon County, Montana. First established in 1909, Plevna resides on the Milwaukee Road Transcontinental Rail Line along the Pacific Extension. Due to the number of Bulgarian railroad workers in the area at the time, the town is named after a Bulgarian city, Pleven. Read more >

Posted in BMS Partners, Small Cities | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

5 Basic Cash Handling Principles and Procedures for Utility Providers


“Am I doing this right?”

“I know we’ve ‘always done it this way’ but why?”

These are the questions that run through the minds of cashiers and cash handlers in a utility company.  And that’s ok!  Why? Because there are answers to these questions!

Though policies may differ slightly between organizations, there are some general and specific cash handling procedures that can be implemented to improve – or maybe even explain – your cash handling processes. These basic principles for proper management of receipts fall into five areas: 1) establishing responsibility, 2) segregating duties, 3) restricting access, 4) independent verification, and 5) document procedures. Read more >

Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, Small Cities, Utility Billing | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Workplace Transition: How to greet a new employee, be a new employee, and deal with change

Vector handshake

Autumn is the season of change.  Coincidentally, it is also the time for elections, which for many elected officials means change within the workplace. If you are new to a position within the office, or if your office is awaiting a new employee, there are a variety of ways you can address the change so that the transition is as seamless as possible.

If you are the new person:

  • Get plenty of rest.  You will need to be well-rested so you are at the top of your game during the first transitional weeks.
  • Say hello.  A little introduction goes a long way.
  • Read more >
    Posted in Best Practices, City Clerk Cafe, Small Cities | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

    Intern Abby, The Dirty Dash, and a Chili Cookoff


    Hello, Everyone!

    The final weeks of summer were filled with a lot of community events. As a company team, some members from BMS participated in two great events; one local event and one national event. I discovered that coming together outside of the office as a team is a great way to bond on a more personal level with fellow coworkers. Not only were these events great for getting to know coworkers, they were also great in the fact that we were helping others and supporting the community, all the while having fun.

    Saturday, August 24 the 8th Annual “Rotary Festival for Youth and Chili Cook Off” was held at Polson’s Riverside Park. Read more >

    Posted in BMS Events, BMS Staff | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

    Software to Assist Local Governments with Energy Assistance Programs

    By Julia Caro, Utility Billing Support Team Lead

    Energy Assistance ProgramPayment Methods, programs funded by state and federal agencies to help pay energy bills for people who qualify as “low income,” are generally seen as a good thing.  But when trying to seamlessly integrate these programs into your billing infrastructure, a good thing can quickly go bad!  An emerging issue with local governments using these Energy Assistance Programs is implementing the proper payment procedures within their billing software.  Black Mountains Software has a solution for that, which makes this good thing even better!

    What are the common guidelines for Energy Assistance Program billings? Read more >

    Posted in BMS Partners, BMS Products, BMS Tech Tips | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

    Stay Connected with Black Mountain Software

    If you sign up for Black Mountain Software emails, about 4 times per year you will receive a special email designed for organizations like yours that are not already Black Mountain customers. We won’t clutter your inbox, and we will provide information relevant and helpful to you. And don’t worry, your email address is never sold or given out to third parties.

    Select the Email Updates You'd Like to Receive:

    Other Ways to Stay Connected:

    Subscribe to the Blog Subscribe to City Clerk Cafe Connect with LinkedIn
    Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter Connect on YouTube