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How Cabarrus County Sheriff's Department Created Conversational Chatbots to Replace Paper-Based Processes

Introduction

We had the pleasure of interviewing Senior Business System Analyst, Mark McIntyre, and Business System Analyst, Landon Patterson, from Cabarrus County, North Carolina.

Cabarrus County purchased Laserfiche in 2003, and in the past few years they harnessed Laserfiche Forms to completely digitize their organization’s business processes. In 2019, they were announced the top winner of the 17th anniversary Digital Counties Survey. Laserfiche played a key role in their success. Watch their interview with Kevin Smith to learn more about their innovations!

 

 

Human-Centric Solutions

Risk Management Portal

“The Risk Management Portal was our leeway into building conversational forms with Laserfiche Forms. With the risk management portal, we ask users a series of questions like, was there exposure to blood or other pathogens, or does the employee want to file a workers compensation claim, and then it’ll give them the forms they need. We’re eventually going to take that portal and fully make it a conversational form,” explained Mark.

Personnel Status Request Chatbot

Their first chatbot created was for their PSR Form. The development of this form allowed their team to handle anything an employee may experience during the course of their career at Cabarrus County. Examples of how employees use the PSR Form are:

  • Taking leave without pay
  • Completing a performance review

It makes it easier on their staff because the data auto fills on the form based on the sources selected. They took a process that previously required completion of more than 20 fields in the employee system down to five button clicks via a conversation with the chatbot!

The Cabarrus team is focused on providing human-centric solutions for fulfilling business requirements.

Not only did this simplify their processes, but it improved the accuracy of their data. It didn’t take long for people to begin singing praises for this new approach. “As soon as we rolled it out, people loved it because it is so easy to use, and it works on any device. They can use it on their phones, just like texting, and it’s so intuitive,” explained Patterson.

Quarterly Inspections Chatbot

It wasn’t long before they found other time intensive processes, they could convert into chatbots. They developed a chatbot that uses Laserfiche as a component for the Sheriff’s Department’s quarterly inspections. They inspect more than 50 categories. The following is a sample of the types of information they must collect:

  • Uniforms
  • Computer Equipment
  • Vehicles
  • Firearms
  • Portable Printers
  • Condition of Items
  • Serial Numbers
  • Notes About Each Item’s Condition

The team handed the Sheriff’s Office a very user-friendly way to work through this process. They transformed the long form into a chatbot. It auto populates data from the last inspection, so they don’t need to start from scratch and fill in 50 or more fields to begin. They simply confirm the information is still accurate. In the department’s case, they have over 300 deputies. Imagine how long inspections with 50 or more categories took pre-chatbot. It shortened the process down to a confirmation after the initial inspection is complete.

Concealed Weapons Carry Permit Form

The Records Department processes concealed weapons carry permits for their residents. Previously, the process was solely paper-based. The department ran out of room to physically store anymore paper – a common problem for many organizations. They decided to digitize all paper records, and store them into the Laserfiche repository. Working in a paperless environment with Laserfiche now allows the team to provide electronic responses to requests for information to other agencies as well.

Federal Government API Integration

The integration they are most excited about is an API that the government released that allows the Veteran Affairs Office to upload their Laserfiche Forms to process veteran benefits requests. It allows for a seamless end-user experience without requiring a ton of hand coding from their small team. Integrations like this API help their staff to stay low-code, and ensures that they deploy projects quickly. It reduces the department’s turnaround time buy huge margins. The previous 14-day response time from the federal government now takes 48 hours! “That’s huge for veterans that need those benefits,” expressed Patterson.

The Future

We’re going to create a workflow that is graphical, with zero code, that will pull status updates every two hours, so the veterans can track when the request was submitted, when it is processing, and more. Before, they had to fax in a form, and if they got a success message back from the fax, they knew it was received. Then it had to process and they had no idea how long that would take. We want to fix these problems for our veterans with Laserfiche,” McIntyre elaborated.

To learn more about how Laserfiche can empower your organization to build chatbots with Laserfiche Forms, contact us today, or skip the form and chat with us.
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