Evolve for Government: Enhancing the Professional Licensing and Certification Process
The government regulation of licensed professionals is a constantly evolving landscape. As regulators who manage these processes, government agencies are used to adapting and making the necessary changes to maintain efficiency. Your Business Process Management (BPM) software should be just as responsive.
Advantages of an agile platform include improving your customer experience, supporting employee efficiency, ensuring data integrity for informed policymaking, and creating a stronger, more reliable structure for everyone involved. The State of Vermont’s Office of Professional Regulation recently made major modernizations to its professional licensing software that support the State’s ability to serve licensees and achieve its public protection mission – and it couldn’t have come at a more critical time.
Learn how, in response to COVID-19, quick updates from Bresatech combined with Pega’s agile, low-code software allowed the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation to rapidly implement the State’s emergency policies.
- Hey there, I'm George Marakas, a lead business architect with Bresatech.
- And I'm Lauren Hibbert, the director of the office of professional regulation for the state of Vermont. We're an umbrella agency that regulates a diverse set of professions, 49 of them in fact, everything from tattooists to veterinarians. Today, George and I wanted to share some of our Pega story and our work on our core application software, including how we found our Pega partner in Bresatech. A few years ago, we started to recognize that our legacy system was significantly outdated and inefficient. It forced our users into the post office to send us paperwork for applications and renewals. All of our work was not occurring in our system and we knew this was a problem. We knew that we needed a better system that would serve our staff and our customers. For our external users, we wanted real-time notifications, and live updates, and the ability to add new information in the application when needed. For our staff, we wanted one system to house all of our operations and the ability to move one piece of work to the other side of the office without an email or a meeting. And that's why we moved to Pega in 2017.
- We joined Lauren on the state of Vermont project in late 2019. We didn't implement any new work right away. We knew that in order to be effective, we need to first get an understanding of their business. So we spend time in discovery phase doing just that. We ask the questions, why does your business operate this way? What do the users expect of the application? And what are you really trying to achieve as an organization? The answers to those questions really drove our direction moving forward. Additionally, we spent time looking into the application design and code base. We found clear areas of opportunity for improvement, largely due to much of the coding designs, not adhere to Pega best practices and some of the processes were not customized to meet the specific needs of the state of Vermont. After we spent time in discovery, understanding the business, we then just got to work. First, the office of professional regulation was already using Pega, which is the best in class BPM solution, perfect for applications in a licensing environment that needs to respond to constant change, where there's a heavy focus on business agility and speeding up time to market. We then introduced scrum, a leading industry delivery model. We prioritized their business needs in the form of a product backlog. And then we worked on fixing underlying issues to address some system instability. Finally, we then delivered real features and real enhancements that benefit internal and external users of the system.
- And as a result of that work, we saw immediate improvement. Some of our most common bugs were fixed within the first eight weeks of Bresatech joining our team. Bresatech was quick to show us the power of Pega's agile, low code application software. And this became especially important when COVID happened and our entire agency had to transition on a dime and work from home within a matter of a day. Bresatech and Pega had us up and running without any effect to processing times or response rates. As I talked to other state agencies, both in Vermont and external to Vermont, I realized how truly unusual that is. COVID also created unique challenges for the healthcare professionals that served our population. We needed to create temporary licenses for out of state folks who provided essential care to patients in Vermont who were stuck inside their homes. Then, most national exams for licensure were canceled due to COVID. So we needed to go to the legislature and ask for a new temporary license, one that had never been created before to allow those recent graduates to have a temporary license, despite the fact that they hadn't passed the national exam. We were successful in our legislative efforts. And within three days of that legislation being signed, Bresatech had that temporary license up and running in our application without any delay. And just to be clear, that was 167 different license types. It was truly remarkable. Our partnership with Bresatech combined with Pega's low code application has allowed us to be successful in the times of COVID, and in fact, it has been vital to our success. Now that our initial response to COVID is over, we're looking forward to future capabilities.
- Lauren, thanks for the kind words. And we're thrilled to be part of the state of Vermont team, and so excited to continue to add value for the application for your users. And as much success that we've had collectively, we're not done yet. And we plan to continue to collaborate with the state of Vermont's experts to provide real enhancements that not just meet business requirements, but also focus heavily on the user and the user experience. And these features come from business needs, user feedback, legislation, internal affairs, or other external factors. And that's also one of the best benefits of being a Pega partner. The business requirements can be quite complex, but we can always rely on Pega to provide us with cutting edge technology and training so that we can provide our clients with the best possible solutions.
- And speaking of being a Pega partner, I wanted to mention how we chose Bresatech to be our Pega partner. We wanted a partner that would be transparent and honest with us, that would help us understand the system inside and out, and collaborated well with our team. It was also important to us that they empowered our end users, my staff, to create a better lovable product, because that's how we're going to truly transform our operations. Bresatech checked all of those boxes. It was clear that they were committed to the state of Vermont, and it couldn't be more appreciated. There's a lot of trust here, not only between George and I, but between George's team and my team. And we're looking forward to all the great things we're going to be working on together. So on behalf of the state of Vermont, George, I want to say thank you to you and your team for your important work on our project.
- Thanks Lauren, it's been a real pleasure working with you and your team. And we are so excited for the new features plan for your agency. So I mentioned earlier, how Pega is the absolute best-in-class BPM solution available. We'd love to share more information with you at our live virtual booth. Lauren and I will both be there with a few more of our team members ready to answer any questions you may have about our discussion here or about Bresatech in general. We also have some marketing materials that lay out our specialties within Pega, as well as our approach to the Pega express methodology. And if you don't know what that means, that's even more of a reason for you to join us. We hope to see you there.
- I look forward to meeting you all and engaging in a conversation. And just so you know, I didn't know what the Pega express methodology was a couple of years ago.
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