They say hindsight is 20/20 and that couldn’t be more accurate when referring to new and old business processes. Sometimes you look back on how you used to do things and think, “how did we even manage to do it like that?”
While it can be shocking to reflect on the past, it also helps to better understand what you changed and why, so you can decide what to improve on next. Just 8 years ago, the Nebraska Office of the CIO had no content management solution and isolated data silos. Being forward thinking, they decided it was time to step up their game and push for an enterprise content management (ECM) solution. Within 6 months they had a 6 person ECM team and programs rolled out across multiple departments from labor to health and human services.
Today, as a key partner with both Hyland and DataBank, ECM for them is recognized as the standard content service. Rolled out across 22 departments throughout the entire state of Nebraska their 29 member team has created solutions for contracts, invoices, licensing, mobile inspections, construction agreements and more.
In a presentation he recently gave at both CommunityLIVE and our Minnesota OnBase Day hosted earlier this month, Caleb Wederquist, Lead Developer at the State of Nebraska Office of the CIO, explains where they began, where they are now, and where they are headed. After taking home the Hyland 2017 Government Innovation Award at CommunityLIVE, they’re definitely on the right track.
One of their challenges, according to Caleb as he outlined in his presentation, was with a new mandate from the state legislature in 2013 requiring all state agencies, boards and commissions “develop and maintain a single, searchable website with information on state receipts, expenditures of state funds and contracts.”
The Challenge With Contract Management
As most of us know, contract management is a tough process to tackle. State contracts are typically housed in multiple departments each with their own processes to fill out. While combining them all into one singular database for the entire public to access was a huge undertaking, it was well worth it in the end. With only 2 months to deploy a solution and no clear distinction on how the process should work, they headed into rolling out the first Nebraska enterprise solution.
Collecting The Data
Getting all of the data together in one place required secure file transfers, scan queues, DIP and workflow approvals in OnBase. After setting up the processes, they were able to run through each step and get the batches filed through the workflows. For the pre-existing data, they put together a workflow to duplicate and convert existing data into the new combined system.
One Process, Multiple Agencies
When all was said and done, the process was built out and one solution to cover them all was developed. One of the most important aspects was the involvement of each agency. The State Treasurer’s Office owned the legislative mandate, the state accounting owned the solution, the Office of the CIO owned the ECM development and support and all other state agencies, boards and commissions contributed their own data and support.
Pulling off a multi-agency enterprise solution throughout an entire state was a huge success. Today, citizens of Nebraska now have access to a single site to track and manage all contracts, receipts and funds in relation to the state. What may seem like a bit of a pipe dream for some other government agencies is now proven possible.