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Posted Monday, July 13, 2015 by Team Northwoods

Mobile App Helping Crow Wing County Social Workers Spend Time with Families

Mobile App Helping Crow Wing County Social Workers Spend Time with Families

Agency replacing paper files with mobile document management

DUBLIN, OH—July 14, 2015—A mobile software application is helping Crow Wing County Community Services social workers improve interaction with families, according to a new case study released today by Northwoods.

The agency is using Northwoods’ mobile document management solution, Compass®CoPilot, to achieve these initial results:

  • More time to interact with families
  • More accurate and timely case notes
  • Improved social worker morale

Children and family services, adult mental health and chemical dependency social workers are using the mobile app to access and update documentation app from the field, rather than using paper forms and documents. Social workers can also record the audio of forensic interviews, pull up documents while in court, and email documents to community partners, such as release forms to interview children at school in suspected abuse cases.

Reducing the paperwork burden helps social workers increase the amount of quality time they spend with families, which is the best way to improve safety outcomes, reduce reoccurrence and establish permanency for children and adults.

With additional time available to engage clients, social workers can accentuate positive milestones for families. For example, ongoing case managers are taking monthly photos of children placed in foster care.

"We need the technology so that we can have social workers practicing social work instead of writing notes on a piece of paper,” said Tim Houle, county administrator, Crow Wing County. “We want to invest in making sure that our staff can be as efficient and effective as possible. That they are moving fewer paperclips and changing more lives.”

About Northwoods
Northwoods’ only focus is helping state and county human services agencies increase client service levels and productivity while cutting costs — allowing them to do more with less. Northwoods’ human services software solutions are designed around caseworkers and social workers, not simply data collection. Our Compass®products automate the flow of client and case information based on how caseworkers throughout the agency need to use it. Northwoods is headquartered in Dublin, Ohio. For more information, visit


Tiffany Himmelreich