Getting Social Workers On Board

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2010-10-25 Print this article Print


"One of the biggest challenges," Washington said, "was getting social workers to buy into what performance management is."

Thus, the analytics software was needed to help the management team identify bottlenecks and improve business processes. For example, the IT team worked with department executives to design a series of reports for monitoring and measuring critical benchmarks. Using these reports, executives can now check a variety of measurements such as whether open investigations are being completed in a timely fashion, how many face-to-face contacts have taken place with victims of abuse and neglect, and the average length of stay for children in out-of-home placements. Furthermore, the staff can also run reports on federal funding as well as on net gains and losses with licensed foster homes to track department operations and performance.

"Despite a fast-growing state population and struggling economic climate, we were able to boost our quality of service and also generate more than $7 million in new revenue using IBM analytics," Washington said. "The IBM and PerformanceG2 solution has been instrumental in helping us identify more federal revenue sources."

Washington said that using the IBM software, one Clark County supervisor identified an additional revenue source and the county was able to develop a report that ensured that children were provided with certain services, leading to additional revenue.

"There are certain benchmarks that have to be in place," Washington said. "Before this we had a lot of children not being seen each month. And now we have an automated system, rather than some workers keeping a hand count of whom they have seen and what they have done each month."

"Today, local governments across the U.S. are challenged to improve citizen services with fewer budget dollars," said Anne K. Altman, general manager of IBM Public Sector.  "Clark County's approach illustrates both priorities can be achieved. The IBM analytics technologies used by the Family Services Department will decrease waste and fraud while improving responsiveness, accessibility and accountability to citizens."

The Clark County solution is powered by IBM Cognos solutions and implemented by PerformanceG2. To view a blog post from Clark County's Higdon on business analytics, click here.

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel