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Publications & Results
Issue Briefs (1)
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One of the most difficult problems facing government managers who want to implement new technology is anticipating how it will affect work. Of course, the primary goal is to improve performance. However, it is nearly impossible to take into account all the human, organizational, and external influences that may impact how well that goal is achieved. Until the technology is put to work, planning is often little more than speculation. This is particularly true with mobile technology, which may have substantial potential, when combined with wireless networks, to expand the time, locations, and effectiveness of many types of government work. Fully exploiting this potential, however, presents a complex problem for government managers.

Reports (6)
Assessing Mobile Technologies in Child Protective Services book cover
Over the past six years, the New York State (NYS) Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) has invested in a mobile technology strategy to support child protective services (CPS) work. This report presents results from a multi-year assessment on how the use of mobility technology has affected CPS casework. Findings suggest that laptop use has transformed on-call work processes, provided caseworkers with access to critical information while away from the office, and enabled an immersive community experience for caseworkers. These results have also led to modest, but meaningful improvements in productivity. The report also outlines elements of supportive mobile environments and offers recommendations for improving OCFS' mobile technology strategy.

The New York State (NYS) Mobile Technology Demonstration Project is a multi-year initiative to assess the use of mobile technologies in child protective services (CPS) work in New York State. Starting in 2006, this collaborative effort among the NYS Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS), county Departments of Social Services (DSS or local district), and the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) at the University at Albany has had four distinct evaluation studies. This assessment focuses on the most recent effort in 2008-2009. Starting in January 2009, twenty-six NYS local social service districts received mobile technologies for CPS. There were 505 mobile devices deployed CPS caseworkers and supervisors and managers. This assessment solely addresses measures of productivity and efficiency.

NYS's Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) and the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) partnered to conduct an extended study of the use of connected laptops in child protective services (CPS). Previous pilot and demonstration assessments established a solid foundation of information to support a reasonably clear picture of the short term impacts of deploying and using laptops in CPS work. This assessment allowed a longer time period for data collection (8-10 months) and provided an opportunity to learn more about how laptops are integrated into CPS work, including examining mobility, productivity and satisfaction. This study also examines the long-term impacts and conditions necessary to maximize current and future mobile technology investments in NYS's child protective services.

NYS's Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) and the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) partnered to learn more about the impact of mobile technology use in child protective services (CPS) in New York State. In the Demonstration Project in 23 Local Social Service Districts, 450 laptops and tablets were deployed to CPS caseworkers in 23 NYS Local Social Services Districts. CTG conducted the independent assessment where the evaluation focused on mobility, productivity, and satisfaction as well as addressed environmental factors in statewide IT deployment. The summary report looks at high level impacts across all districts and the profiles detail findings from each individual district.

This assessment report was done under contract with the NYS Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) and in conjunction with the NYC Administration for Children Services (ACS).

This project involved a large scale deployment of wireless laptops to CPS workers in New York City's ACS. The pilot ran from August – October 2007 and involved approximately 135 child protective services workers and supervisors in the Staten Island and Williams Street (Manhattan) offices. The report shows the complexity of deploying technology into a well established profession. The study focused on mobility, productivity, and satisfaction, and includes a set of recommendations and future considerations.

This assessment report was prepared by the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) under a contract with the NYS Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS). The purpose of the work was to assess the performance of mobile technology deployed in a pilot test program with child protective service (CPS) workers. The mobile technologies were deployed to a sample of CPS workers for use in their field work and reporting responsibilities. The pilot was conducted in three Local Departments of Social Services (Local Districts): the New York City Administration for Children’s Services (NYC/ACS), Westchester County Department of Social Services, Family and Children's Services, and Monroe County Department of Human Services, Child and Family Services Division. OCFS engaged the Center for Technology in Government to conduct this assessment and provide a report to the Commissioner of OCFS to assist in decision making and planning for possible further deployment of these technologies.