A biweekly publication for faculty and staff

New System Can Help Save Water with a Couple of Clicks

April 9, 2015

Signage shows restroom visitors how they can report water leaks using their smartphones.New software developed at UC Merced allows anyone on campus with a smartphone to report water leaks to Facilities in a couple of easy steps.

Facilities and Operations in mid-March installed quick-response-code stickers in all the restrooms in the Social Sciences and Management (SSM) building. Users need only to scan the appropriate codes with the barcode scanner apps available on most smartphones. They’ll be asked to log in with their UCMNet IDs and then the scan automatically generates a work request that tells Facilities exactly which restroom it comes from.

Using a login also allows Facilities to follow up with the reporting person in case there are questions about a repair, and to send thank-you notes for helping save water and maintain the campus.

The team behind the “Report a Water Leak” program — Campus Energy Manager Varick Erickson, Facilities’ Director of Energy and Sustainability Zuhair Mased and Facilities’ Director of Operations Jon Lampman — said the goal is to conserve water, increase sustainability and encourage the campus community to participate by reporting leaking water fixtures to Facilities Management.

Erickson developed the QR codes because the process of filling out repair requests was cumbersome, likely preventing some people from reporting leaks at all.

Read the full story in University News.