MO Project: Contextual Branding

Gov. Parson recognizes five state teams at the 2019 Governor’s Award for Quality & Productivity

January 9, 2020

JEFFERSON CITY, MO – Today, Missouri Governor Mike Parson and the Office of Administration recognized five state teams with the 2019 Governor’s Award for Quality and Productivity (GAQP). The award acknowledges accomplishments that serve as an example of continuous improvement, quality, efficiency and productivity in Missouri state government.

Teams were honored today during a special ceremony in the Missouri Capitol’s First Floor Rotunda.

“These teams are great examples of the innovative work that Missouri public servants are doing to help better citizens’ lives,” said Gov. Mike Parson. “It is inspiring to see the dedication of our state workforce to improve our daily lives. Let’s keep this momentum going and continue to find new ways to create better government”

All winning nominations were required to meet criteria related to effectiveness, responsiveness and efficiency that would serve as a model of excellence for other work teams in state government. This year’s GAQP recipients include:

Pinnacle Award

State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) Common Operating Picture & Situational Awareness Portal – SEMA Geographic Information System (GIS) for improving Missouri’s disaster response, SEMA in partnership with the Missouri National Guard, the Missouri Department of Transportation, and the Office of Administration’s GIS staff designed an electronic platform that greatly enhances situational awareness during disasters so state, local, and federal response partners have a comprehensive real-time operating picture as disasters unfold.

The dashboard displays near real-time status of hospitals and medical facilities, hazardous materials, transportation and communications infrastructure, combined with live feeds of weather, traffic, demographics, field reports, and critical infrastructure. As a result, resources can now be deployed faster, and more effectively.

Officials at the Federal Emergency Management Agency have stated the SEMA Situational Awareness Portal is currently the most sophisticated program of its type being utilized in the United States. 

Customer Service

North Fork River Emergency Bridge Replacements on State Route PP and State Route CC in Ozark County for minimizing the inconvenience to the public when flooding washed away two bridges in Southwest Missouri. The MoDOT expedited the planning, procurement, and construction process for both bridges. The replacement team compressed a construction process for bridges of this size that normally takes three years into less than six months. 

Adding to the complexity of these projects, the new bridges were redesigned to avoid future flood damage. Also, using social media and time-lapse photography, the MoDOT team also went to extraordinary lengths to keep the public informed of the bridge construction progress.

Efficiency/Process Improvement

Family Support Division (FSD) – Program Integrity Unit (PIU) for reducing a backlog of 8,337 cases by 90% in less than 18 months by improving case processing times applying continuous improvement tools and techniques. Also, within ten (10) months, the average time to process the “ready to work” claims was reduced from 90-360 days to less than 10 days.

Inefficient processes and procedures, along with various constraints, and a Family Support Division reorganization, contributed to the backlog. The Theory of Constraints and Lean continuous improvement methodologies were utilized to identify and isolate case processing bottlenecks and streamline processes contributing to constraints and work flow inefficiencies. 

This accomplishment was achieved by focusing on maximizing existing resources (no new staff), using huddle boards in conjunction with weekly huddle team meetings, and continually asking “why” and working to improve workflows. The Program Integrity Unit’s transformation has been embraced by employees across the Family Support Division and the Department. Their efforts have led to greatly improved customer service, employee morale, and a renewed sense of common purpose.

Innovation Category

Buckle Up Phone Down (BUPD) for developing an initiative that engages drivers by challenging citizens to pledge to buckle up and put their phones down while driving. A public relations program utilizing television, Movie Theater and radio commercials as well as social media was developed to promote the initiative. Each of the last two years, Governor Parson has proclaimed a day in October as BUPD which was celebrated with press events and public outreach activities throughout the state. As of December 26, 2019, over 500 businesses and more than 11,000 individuals have accepted the BUPD challenge. 

The challenge has an innovative public-private partnership component. Businesses, schools and organizations can accept the BUPD challenge, requiring all employees to buckle their seat belts and put their cell phones down while driving in company/organization vehicles.

BUPD creates a dialogue with drivers that encourages safer action and urges participants to recruit others. It utilizes an interactive, challenge-based approach to changing habits. It has created a dialogue with travelers and the business community that has not previously existed.

Innovation Category

Roaring River First Hole Program for providing a fishing experience to those who might never have the opportunity to experience the “magic of fishing.” Program participants include wounded veterans, at-risk children, home schooled children, children and adults with special abilities, and nursing home patients. This program utilizes a spring fed pool of water that is accessible to those who are especially abled on the Roaring River spring branch.

The First Hole team on their own initiative line up fishing equipment donors and a large number of volunteers with fishing experience and matches them up with program participants to ensure they have a positive fishing experience. In 2018, over 4000 children and adults participated in the program.