Modernizing Unemployment Insurance

N.J. Department of Labor

Background

The mission of the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJ DOL) is to help New Jersey’s economy thrive. The commissioner and the staff are committed to providing quality service and helping New Jersey’s workforce secure employment with quality employers. In addition to providing career development training and guidance, the NJ DOL handles and processes all unemployment insurance claims in the state of New Jersey.

The Problem

The NJ DOL’s antiquated legacy systems housed an incomplete data set that led to an untimely handling of unemployment insurance appeals. The system not only lacked important data about the appellant and the case details, but was also missing a record of agent activity. The unemployment insurance appeals backlog had reached more than 18,000 cases, and the average time for processing an appeal had shot up to 189 days — forcing many New Jersey citizens to go months without unemployment insurance or due process of their case.

The U.S. Department of Labor (US DOL) imposes time-lapse regulations when doling out money to states for unemployment programs. Because of its delays, New Jersey was in jeopardy of losing federal funding. State leadership needed a way to help the staff stay in compliance with US DOL statutes on the response time of appeals of upper and lower authorities.

The Solution

With a grant from the federal government, NJ DOL hired Bluewolf to modernize their business and improve technical processes to better serve New Jersey’s citizens.

We worked with NJ DOL to implement Salesforce Service Cloud, delivering an improved digital and connected experience for New Jersey citizens. We replaced NJ DOL’s legacy system with a proprietary Salesforce FullForce certified solution called Bluewolf AppealsTrak. AppealsTrak automated every step of the appeals process: from case intake and preparation, to appearance scheduling, decision tracking, and reporting. Batch printing through Conga Composer has streamlined decision making and communication, prescriptive data workflows have automated case prioritization, and data quality controls have massively reduced duplicate data in the system, ensuring accurate records and reporting. The new solution was built and deployed for NJ DOL in only sixteen weeks with widespread adoption.

Bluewolf reduced New Jersey Department of Labor’s handle time for unemployment claims by 700%

The Results

NJ DOL employees now have an easily configurable and scalable solution to serve the needs of its citizens and to ensure Due Process. State leadership has the visibility and insight it needs to successfully guide and advise staff on all US DOL statues. New Jersey is able to provide the US DOL with accurate Time Lapse Standards report as proof of its compliance.    Citizens of New Jersey are now experiencing timely processing of unemployment appeals, providing them with their rightful compensation when they lose their jobs. Now, more than a year out from our engagement, the New Jersey unemployment office has eliminated its user backlog. The average time lapse in the appeals process has fallen from 189 days to below 30 days, and federal funding is safe.

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