Child welfare organizations of all sizes can benefit from an information software system that is designed to protect children who are a part of state social service system for various reasons. They may be in foster care, adoptive service, or a part of any other number of state Welfare run agencies for child welfare. Child welfare software plays a critical role for every child who is part of the system. There are benefits to a child welfare software system that are not available through other tracking means, designed to optimize a caseworker’s productivity and help the agency improve outcomes by providing real-time information to the program directors.
Child welfare software has many benefits for children in the foster care system. It helps in monitoring the activity and programs that children participate in. This helps caseworkers do effective evaluations and make the best suggestions for children in the system. User friendly software is needed to ensure that the proper information is being recorded and interpreted by necessary parties. Although there are many variations of this type of software in the marketplace – it is essential that when choosing a software package – the system is intuitive and user friendly. Records management and data collection, for example – must be simple and streamlined with a good flow to keep the caseworkers focused on recording data and being alerted to potential problems, in a timely manner. A good child welfare system is an essential tool for caseworkers and other authorities to use for obtaining reliable data and information.
Case reporting, placement information and foster care management, in general, can be a daunting task coupled with high caseloads and the need to make life changing decisions, result in many social workers having a tough time managing information due to un-correlated data, fragmented data and lack of built-in collaboration tools.
Smart, provider safety alert tools and in-home safety monitoring checklist are two critical functions for any solution – to enable caseworkers to stay in front of issues as they occur or to alert others at your organization for things to look out for.
Changes to State policy and your business rules is something to consider when purchasing or leasing child welfare software. Some of the things to research is “how flexible is the software to change as your needs change?” “How flexible is the vendor to make the changes and at what cost?” The software must be able to conform to your needs as they change. Remember to take a look at the architecture of the system. Is it built on the latest technologies? Is the security robust? Can you maintain the same security for outside stakeholders such as schools or hospitals – who may need to log into your system to give or receive information? Does the software utilize web services – enabling you to transfer data seamlessly to other third party software systems OR, can it pull data out of those systems – all electronically, removing the need to enter data into two systems? You need a child welfare software package that is proven and reliable. You need a system that you can rely on day-to-day that help your caseworkers stay on track and that provides you key indicators as they occur.
The largest difficulty any case manager has while working with a child is knowing the specifics of what has been happening in that child’s life to date. With child welfare software the guess work is mostly eliminated – meaning caseworkers and other interested parties can focus on finding solutions and not solving the puzzles from the past. Child welfare software is designed to be beneficial to states, agencies, and children. The right system can transform your agency in ways you may have never thought possible. Remember, software in itself is just a computer tool that helps you manage tasks and activities. Web-based software is great because it doesn’t tie you to any one computer. You can access the system from anywhere with an Internet connection and a secure login. The best child welfare software allows for mobile connectivity so you can view case records and case notes on your smart phone.