Blog

Our blog isn’t about us. It’s about you. We discuss business challenges and real issues human service agencies and caseworkers face everyday. You’ll find traditional human services software articles about things like document management for human services and social work technology. But you’ll also find inspirational stories to boost caseworkers’ spirits and tools to help agencies find and gain support for technology in human services.

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2023 by Team Northwoods

Can't Miss Conferences for Human Services in 2023

Over the past several years, this blog post has become a go-to resource for readers looking for information about the best industry conferences to keep up to date on key issues, trends, and topics impacting human services.  

It's been a while since we've planned for a full conference season, so we're excited to have so many events on the schedule this year!

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Posted Thursday, January 19, 2023 by Amy Drapcho

Is Any Money Out There? A Quick Guide to Grants for Human Services

As your human services agency navigates the complex technology buying process, you may find yourself wondering what external funding streams are available, outside of your agency’s budget, and how to access them to support or enhance your upcoming project. Local, state, and national grant opportunities are a resource you can strategically leverage to support innovation, modernization, and workforce initiatives.

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Posted Monday, January 9, 2023 by Team Northwoods

Traverse for Adult & Aging: Software to Support the Continuum of Care

Adult & aging caseworkers are stretched for time and resources trying to balance paperwork requirements and spending quality time with clients. They want to focus on assessing clients’ needs and coordinating services, but administrative roadblocks stand in the way.

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Posted Tuesday, December 6, 2022 by Team Northwoods

Readers' Choice Recap: Top Blog Posts of 2022

Another year is coming to a close and that means it's time to recap our top blogs of 2022. Whether you're new here (welcome!) or a regular reader (welcome back!), we hope you'll find something new and insightful in this year's list.

Subscribe to the blog via email so you never miss out on future content or get in touch with our team if certain trends, topics, or challenges are on your mind as we head into the new year. As always, thanks for reading along with us!

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Posted Monday, November 21, 2022 by Laura Haffield

How Academic Institutions Help Strengthen the Human Services Workforce

In a recent blog on solving the human services staffing crisis, I mentioned wanting to shout from the rooftops about partnerships between academic institutions and local and state agencies.

My bias is showing in this area due to my time in the University of Wisconsin–Madison Title IV-E Public Child Welfare Training Program and seeing that partnership between academia and local child welfare agencies play out to the benefit of all stakeholders involved. Without that program, and the mentorship and funding that came along with it, I may not have become a committed child welfare practitioner who, despite transitioning away from direct practice, is still dedicated to this field today.

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Posted Wednesday, November 2, 2022 by Team Northwoods

From Input to Insight: How Brunswick County Leverages Data in Traverse

“We have all this great data in Traverse. The way we're organizing it, we can pull it out in a meaningful way.” – Cathy Lytch, Social Services Director, Brunswick County Department of Social Services (DSS)

This feedback from a customer is one of the reasons why we built our flagship software Traverse® in the first place. We often hear how workers spend too much time collecting, entering, and verifying data, but not enough time using it to inform decisions and actions. The same goes for agency leaders who have a trove of valuable insight buried in their systems for collecting data for compliance and reporting.

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Posted Thursday, October 13, 2022 by Team Northwoods

Child Welfare Agencies Can't Live Without Traverse. Here's Why.

Traverse®—Northwoods' cloud-based document management, forms management, mobility, and case discovery software—digitizes entire case files and mobilizes content to enable social work from anywhere. It surfaces critical information to help child welfare teams feel more supported and manage the complexity of today’s cases. As a result, agencies can better meet performance measures and permanency goals.

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Posted Monday, September 26, 2022 by Team Northwoods

What Would You Ask if Your Child Welfare Case File Could Talk?

Behavioral assessments. Psychological reports. Safety plans. Court documents.
Medical histories. Risk factors. Protective factors. Traumatic triggers.
Previous interventions. Transitions and placements. Drug involvement.

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Posted Thursday, September 15, 2022 by Team Northwoods

Advancing Economic Mobility and Well-Being Ahead of the Unwinding

In August, a few Northwoodians attended the American Public Human Services Association’s (APHSA) Economic Mobility and Well-Being Conference. From sessions on emerging from the pandemic, adapting policies and processes, and developing the workforce, a few themes emerged about where the industry is heading as “the unwinding” draws closer. Keep reading for some additional insight on each theme:

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Posted Wednesday, August 17, 2022 by Team Northwoods

7 Ways to See If Your Technology Is Meeting Caseworkers’ Expectations

We may never be able to predict where the industry is heading in the next five to 10 years, but we do know there are some key issues facing human services today that will continue to impact the industry tomorrow. Modern technology is a linchpin in how successfully agencies can address them.

Our eBook, “Modernizing Human Services: Technology’s Integral Role in Addressing Key Issues,” dives into a few of these critical issues (think caseworker burnout and client disengagement) and explores the role that technology plays in overcoming each one. Keep reading for a short summary of how IT and program leaders can be the hero to human services caseworkers who need immediate support to help clients today, while positioning agencies for continued success in the long term.

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