How Modern Technologies Transform Unemployment Insurance
Government agencies are finally adopting modern technology and processes. This digital government transformation is long overdue, and the fact that State Workforce agencies were reliant on outdated computer systems was even highlighted by this 2010 study conducted by the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA).
The Infosys LaborForce system, the only cloud-native and fully integrated Tax, Benefits, Appeals, and Workforce system, shifts a State Workforce agency’s digital asset from legacy mainframe-based servers to the cloud. This shift brings with it a great deal of flexibility, scalability, security, and the possibility to incorporate modern solutions that help streamline processes for both State Workforce agencies and their constituents.
Let’s take a closer look at how modern unemployment insurance solutions are improving the constituent experience, transforming how agency staff work, and strengthening the system against future challenges.
Improving Constituent Experience
The adoption of modern technology is changing how constituents interact with State Workforce agencies in several ways. Modern UI systems are designed to focus on constituent outcomes and improve the user experience by doing away with complicated and unreliable government websites. Agencies that have modernized their systems are now equipped to provide constituents with support at any time of the day or night. Self-service functionality through intuitive and multi-lingual mobile-optimized websites and portals enables constituents to get quick answers to simple queries or check on the status of their claims, without having to wait to speak with agency staff.
Using business rule engines, modern unemployment insurance systems can automate adjudication, calculate benefits, and even process payments, without human intervention, speeding up the entire process and reducing wait times. Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled chatbots can further streamline the constituent experience by providing personalized, on-demand guidance to claimants right from when they apply for a claim to filing weekly certifications and submitting follow up documents. Such seamless processes significantly improve and simplify constituents’ interactions with State Workforce agencies.
The Infosys LaborForce system also broadens the scope of unemployment insurance services from simply processing claims and administering benefits to helping unemployed workers find suitable jobs and rejoin the workforce. Constituents can easily connect with local and state workforce boards, receive guidance on acquiring in-demand skills, and be directed to possible job openings.
Transforming How Unemployment Agency Staff Work
Getting long-term employees to embrace new methods and processes can be a challenge. Structured training and organizational change management programs can help familiarize agency staff with new software and introduce them to the capabilities of faster, cloud-native solutions. Once employees are made aware of how the Infosys LaborForce system can streamline workflows, speed up processes, and enable them to better help constituents, they can adapt and better use the tools at their disposal.
The implementation of a new modernized system like Infosys LaborForce, can greatly reduce the workload on agency staff while simultaneously speeding up processing for Tax, Benefits, Appeals, and Workforce. Self-service portals and automating processes like rate calculations, adjudication, the calculation of benefits, payment processing, hearing scheduling, job matching, and other routine tasks frees up time for agency employees to solve more complicated issues and work on core processes. Cloud-native UI solutions also bring with them the flexibility to add new features, programs or incorporate changes in legislature, for example new Unemployment Insurance Program Letters (UIPL) without delay. Additionally, modern UI software includes intelligent analytics to give staff easy access to an employer’s or constituent’s details, past issues they may have faced, and information about their previous interactions with the agency, all from a centralized and highly informative dashboard.
Strengthening The System Against Future Challenges
A major issue with legacy unemployment insurance computer systems is their vulnerability to fraudulent activities such as State Unemployment Tax Act (SUTA) dumping, identity theft resulting in fraudulent claims and benefit payments that cost State Workforce agencies millions of dollars. Modern systems use secure blockchain-based technology, artificial intelligence, data analytics, and secure architecture that easily integrate with third party vendors that provide additional crossmatch functionality that works to maintain program integrity by analyzing red flags in real-time, identifying dishonest employers and claimants, and keeping fraudsters out of the system.
It is about time unemployment insurance systems evolve by adopting modern technology to streamline and modernize processes and workflows. Doing so benefits constituents as well as unemployment agency employees in several ways while also securing the UI system against fraud and fortifying it to handle an unexpected unemployment crisis in the future.
Stephanie Puryear, Principal Consultant – National Labor Practice, Infosys Public Services
Stephanie has 20 years of experience helping Labor and Workforce Departments administer Unemployment Insurance (UI) programs effectively. She has delivered UI solutions in 5 states and is the Manager for Business Analysis and the UI PMO for LaborForce. Stephanie has designed highly user-friend systems and is expert on helping agencies fight UI fraud.