Division of Public Assistance Business Analysis/Process Improvement Project (2003)

Brian Saylor, PhD, MPH
Curtis Lomas, BS


The Division of Public Assistance Business Analysis/Process Improvement project was funded by the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Assistance. The FY 2001 project budget was $138,425.00.


The Institute for Health Studies (ICHS) conducted an assessment of the business practices in Division of Public Assistance (DPA) field offices around the state. DPA is the state welfare agency. This project was being conducted as a public/private partnership between ICHS and Professional Growth Systems, an Anchorage-based business consulting firm.


The State was concerned that overlaying the message of welfare reform on the more traditional aid programs may have led to role confusion among DPA line workers. The agency was also interested in identifying and eliminating inefficiencies in its service delivery systems so caseworkers would be able to spend more time helping Temporary Assistance clients move successfully into the work force. Finally, DPA wanted to assure that its system encouraged full participation in the Food Stamp and Medicaid programs.


ICHS and Professional Growth Systems worked with DPA field service staff from around the state to identify the agency’s business processes and to define staff roles, assess problems and duplications of effort in the service delivery processes, and develop recommendations for change. Once a revised "best practices" business model was developed, ICHS and PGS conducted work sessions in each DPA field office to introduce the changes to staff and to support their acceptance and implementation of the improved processes.


Interim and final status reports and recommendations were produced for this project. Copies are available at the Division of Public Assistance.