The Value of Information
Leveraging a strong technology foundation, the Information Systems Department (ISD) is continuously shifting focus to better utilize and value information.
By combining web, social media, geographical information, and electronic records a unique opportunity exists to better use local government information to improve awareness, enhance community engagement and demonstrate transparency in all we do.
ISD works with Sonoma County leadership to stimulate an environment for systems innovation while developing business strategies that serve the growing technology needs of the County enterprise.
Working collaboratively with leadership from County departments and agencies in the selection, development, and implementation of new technologies, programs, and services that address business challenges and support their needs. Research and development efforts nurture new ideas from concept, through pilot, and into mainstream production. Additionally, this service is designed to leads technical teams on high profile projects requiring an agile approach to implementation. These projects lead to business process improvement through cross-departmental collaboration and data sharing, while enhancing the client experience.
A current notable project is Accessing Coordinated Care to Empower Self Sufficiency, ACCESS Sonoma County. Through closer coordination between the departments of Health Services, Human Services, Community Development Commission, Child Support Services and criminal justice departments’ support is more effectively delivered to clients with complex needs improving their health, well-being and economic stability. Ultimately, the technology creates a scalable solution and blueprint for how county safety net departments can holistically manage care for citizen populations with complex needs.
Another innovative project currently being piloted at the county involves digital services with electronic forms and signatures. The digitized forms include internal documents such as Human Resources forms and reimbursement requests, as well as forms submitted by citizens to governmental agencies, with a goal of reducing costs and providing more efficient services. In conjunction with the electronic forms, the team enabled electronic signatures as a way to fully digitize these processes.
Open Data and Online Services are part of the Board’s work priorities to expand Online Services supporting government openness, accessibility and transparency. Information Systems is working with departments to expand offerings and to enhance the value of information. A few examples of recent additions to online services includes: a new online reporting system, SoCo Report It , allows residents of the unincorporated County to report County maintenance and repair service requests; and SoCo Data provides a platform to share important local data with the community.
SoCo Connect provides people with the ability to submit and monitor the status of service requests for common maintenance and repair issues in the county service areas using both the Internet and smartphone applications. The app provides a convenient way to submit service requests, such as reporting a pothole or streetlight outage, and make it easy to attach a photo of the problem. Additionally, the app automatically records the location via the GPS location services on the smartphone. The submitter can track progress of the request from submission to resolution.
SoCo Data is accessible using a tool set that allows the public to view data directly in a web browser, download data into a spreadsheet or in other popular formats for more advanced analysis and visualization. County data and information is now available online to share and improve access to public information. Initial datasets include public safety incident reports, restaurant inspections, property information, and the County budget. The County is also collaborating with the City of Santa Rosa to allow the public to view data from multiple jurisdictions through the same tool.