Document management software to help agency manage increasing caseloads

DUBLIN, OH—May 28, 2015—Douglas County Department of Human Services (DHS) in Colorado is eliminating paper files by partnering with Northwoods to implement an electronic document management software solution and new business processes. The solution will help the agency manage increasing caseloads and better serve families.

“We are looking forward to the partnership and all of the efficiencies it will bring to this complex work,” said Dan Makelky, director.

Douglas County DHS will utilize Northwoods’ Compass® software to help caseworkers and social workers in public assistance, child support and protective services manage client and case information in the office, and access and update documentation and photos from the field.

The new technology will replace the agency’s antiquated paper-based processes, which are time-consuming and inhibit workers’ ability to share critical information with each other to ensure clients are receiving the right services as quickly as possible.

“Instead of duplicating efforts across program areas, we will have a client-centered approach to gathering and storing information, which is a more holistic way to best serve our clients,” said Sharon Svendsen, business office and program integrity manager. “This technology will also be linked to DHS’ master client index, which will identify a single client across multiple state systems, and reduce possible duplication of clients.”

Douglas County DHS also expects an improvement in staff retention rates. Human services work is a high-stress, demanding job that comes with high turnover rates. Reducing the paperwork burden reduces stress on workers, which improves retention rates and ultimately improves service to families.

Northwoods’ mobile document management solution, Compass® CoPilot, will help mobile social workers access and update documentation using an iPad® app from the field, rather than using paper forms and documents. The mobile app allows social workers to spend more time with families by reducing the time they spend completing required paperwork. Time spent in the field with families is the best way to improve safety outcomes, reduce reoccurrence and establish permanency for children.

About Northwoods
Northwoods’ only focus is helping state and county human services agencies increase client service levels and productivity while cutting costs — allowing them to do more with less. Northwoods’ human services software solutions are designed around caseworkers and social workers, not simply data collection. Our Compass® products automate the flow of client and case information based on how caseworkers throughout the agency need to use it. Northwoods is headquartered in Dublin, Ohio. For more information, visit or follow Northwoods on Twitter @teamnorthwoods.


Tiffany Himmelreich