Treeno Software Helps City of Dover, NH Improve and Maintain Transparency
The City of Dover, NH is committed to providing transparency for its constituents and employees, getting as much information out to citizens as quickly as possible. Providing a wealth of information in a timely manner for interested parties.
When existing tools were no longer meeting their needs, the city sought a technology solution that would allow for greater efficiencies. In 2005, the city signed on to use Treeno Software’s document management solution.
Dover’s police department and city clerk’s office knew they needed to implement systems and processes to streamline the flow of, and access to, information. Challenges with proper scanning and indexing made future searches of scanned documents inadequate and prevented further adoption of the existing solution. The solution did not offer a web-based application.
When city residents or businesses wanted or needed to look up publicly-available information, they had to physically visit the city clerk’s office, because then-current technologies didn’t allow for remote web access to records.
Various departments within the city had different needs. For example, the city’s police department needed a technology tool that would give them secure access to all of their case files; the city clerk’s office needed a tool that would allow constituents to access public information such as meeting minutes from city council meetings. Three separate departments had a need to share property information records.
For public information records that needed to be available both internally and externally, but the city also wanted to ensure employees wouldn’t need to enter information more than once. Furthermore, the city operates under a tax cap, so they needed a solution that would allow them to create cost efficiencies too.
The city evaluated providers and ultimately decided to implement Treeno Software’s electronic document management software solution, with the police department and city clerk’s office among the first adopters.
Treeno handled the data migration and audited the results of that migration, ensuring data was transferred into the new system correctly.
In 2013, the city moved from a Linux to Windows virtualized server environment, increasing its document management solution’s high availability as well as its ease of support.
As a result of implementing Treeno’s document management solution, the City of Dover has been able to follow through on its continued goal of transparency for constituents, in addition to realizing process and cost efficiencies.
When preparing records for city council meetings, Treeno’s workflow solutions allow the Council Clerk, Finance Director, City Attorney and others to review and approve information quickly and easily, where before paperwork had to be routed and sign-offs had to be captured manually. This is just one example of how implementing the solution has resulted in an exponential reduction in paper flow.
By leveraging Treeno’s workflow capabilities, public meeting document creation involves less paper, greater staff efficiency and reduced preparation time as staff can review specified steps in tandem. Accountability is also increased as approvals are documented and time stamped for easy review as needed.
Instead of having to visit the city clerk’s office to review information, constituents now have easy and intuitive online access into a variety of records, including ordinances, resolutions, property records, financial and purchasing information and much more.
City employees have also benefited from the move to Treeno, as the system has allowed them to create electronic file cabinets to store and share information with others who have a common business need to see those documents and records. Several departments need to access property records, including the Planning, Inspections and Engineering departments. Using Treeno’s document management solution makes it easy for those areas to contribute and share information.
While the police department and city clerk’s office were the initial users when the city of Dover implemented Treeno’s document management tools, several other city departments now use Treeno’s systems. The Community Services Department uses the system for long-term archival and storage of infrastructure asset information, while Human Resources relies on the system’s document storage capabilities to manage personnel records, correspondence, and more. By utilizing common fields, such as parcel ID or asset ID, users can easily access documents stored in Treeno from other applications. This integration allows for decreased training time and increased ease of use and adoption of the solution.
In addition to making it easier for people to access information, Treeno also makes it simple for the city to maintain and ensure security and confidentiality of documents. The system integrates with the city’s existing Active Directory, meaning that when an employee’s access to other city systems is terminated, their access to non-public documents stored inside Treeno’s document management system is also terminated immediately.
Finally, the document management solution provides benefits for the city’s disaster recovery efforts, because documents are stored on a virtual server. This allows for faster and easier recovery if needed.
The Long-Term Benefits
In addition to continuing to enjoy the process-and cost-efficiencies Treeno’s document management solution has provided, the city also expects the system to help them with other initiatives in the coming years. Some examples of ongoing and upcoming projects that will leverage Treeno’s solutions include:
- Support strategic goal for intuitive searching of all public documents, including those in Treeno
- Streamline the permit process for inspections/property development to include the iterative plan changes in these processes
- Help resolve space management issues by allowing the city to reclaim space formerly used to store paper records and files
The City of Dover has also found Treeno to be a responsive service provider, listening to feedback and working to find additional solutions and efficiencies whenever possible. This relationship is expected to continue adding value to the services the city provides its constituents.
Annie Dove, the Director of Information Technology for the City of Dover, looked back at how far the city has come since implementing Treeno’s document management solution in 2006. “When we started with Treeno, we had 1.5 departments using the system’s scanning and archival tools. Today, we have 12 city departments using Treeno, several of them using multiple electronic cabinets. As a city, Dover is continuing to become more efficient and more transparent every day. Treeno’s scanning and indexing capabilities play an integral role in that continuous improvement.”