Innovation Nominee

Electronic Licensing Inspection Checklist Information (ELICI) system
Minnesota Department of Human Services, Office of Inspector General, Licensing Division

The ELICI system has disrupted the status quo with its innovative approach to compliance monitoring reviews and investigations. Before its development, state, and county human service licensors utilized paper checklists to review licensed programs for compliance with licensing rules and statutes. Paper checklists were completed in the field and taken back to the office to draft follow-up documentation, such a correction order. As a state-supervised, bifurcated administrative structure, some licensing work is done by the state and some is delegated to counties with state oversight. Depending on the type of license, the checklist, pictures, evidence documentation, and correction orders, used to be stored at county offices or within the state DHS electronic document management system (EDMS). This presented numerous challenges whenever a coordinated action was required to protect the health, safety, and welfare of those served in DHS-licensed programs. Further, there have been challenges in assuring that the licensing rules and statutes were applied consistently throughout the state.

With input and assistance from subject matter experts, stakeholders, and county and state licensors, the MN.IT development team was charged with crafting an electronic (paperless) system that could be used by state, county, and private licensing agencies. The tool had to allow licensors to conduct reviews in a consistent manner, automatically generate follow-up documentation, and provide ample data for analysis while also being malleable enough to incorporate changes to licensing laws and rules. ELICI was engineered with an “offline-first” design for those times when an internet connection was spotty or unavailable, a situation that is common in out-state Minnesota. Additionally, it also incorporates automatic queuing of changes to the server so when a user is back online, the user does not need to upload data to save their changes. Further, ELICI was engineered with a powerful administrative portal that allows business users to maintain the checklists, and violation and document text to incorporate changes to licensing rules and statutes.

Since the initial roll-out to family childcare county licensors in March of 2018, more than 15,700 checklists have been completed. These reviews have generated millions of rows of data that have been analyzed, reported, and used to make data-driven decisions and drive policy changes. The Licensing Division is currently using the data collected by ELICI evaluate implementation of a key indicator checklist which utilizes a shortened or abbreviated version of a comprehensive checklist to measure compliance through a statistical methodology. Additionally, DHS is using ELICI data to develop models to statistically predict program integrity, program compliance, and maltreatment.

After the demonstrated success in family childcare, ELICI is being rolled out to monitor compliance in all 19 service classes licensed by DHS. When fully implemented, ELICI will be used to monitor compliance in more than 23,000 DHS-licensed programs throughout the state of Minnesota.

ELICI is a model for innovation; it has changed the way compliance monitoring is done for licensed programs. Not only are reviews more meaningful, they are more efficient. The potential for replicability in other state agencies is abundant as many state agencies have regulatory functions that monitor for compliance with statutes and rules.

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Steering Committee

Alex Hepp, City of Hopkins
Bill Bleckwehl, Cisco
Dave Andrews, DEED
Jay Wyant, Minnesota IT Services
Jim Hall, Ramsey County
Matt Bailey, IBM
Melissa Reeder, League of Minnesota Cities
Nathan Beran, City of New Ulm
Sue Wallace, IT Futures Foundation
Lisa Meredith, Minnesota Counties Computer Cooperative
Justin Kaufman, Minnesota IT Services
Renee Heinbuch, Washington County/MNCITLA
Jerine Rosato, Ramsey County
David Berthiaume, Minnesota IT Services
Cory Tramm, Sourcewell Tech 

Content Committee

Tomas Alvarez, Federal Reserve
Tom Ammons, MN.IT – Central
Dave Andrews, MN State Services for the Blind
Susan Bousquet, MN.IT – DOT
Robert Granvin, Metro State
Alex Hepp, City of Hopkins
Shawntan Howell, Ramsey County
Jenny Johnson, Metropolitan Council
Millicent Kasal, MN.IT – Central
Ping Li, MN.IT – MMB
Chibuzor Nnaji, MN.IT – DHS
Mehrdad Shabestari, MN.IT – Central