Colorado Secretary of State: Working to provide even better service

Business and Licensing staffers Katy Wallace, Colin Whetsel and Amberdawn Scott.

Each year, employees across all divisions at the Colorado Secretary of State go through training to improves processes and provide even better services.

It’s called “LEAN training,” and the Business and Licensing Division just finished up three rounds. The teams focused on different areas within the Business and Licensing division: the notary application rejection rate, bingo-raffle electronic filing adoption rate, and the commercial registered agent or CRA filing process.

Secretary of State Wayne Williams.

“We have come a long way in teaching our staff to use lean tools and ‘speak’ a common language of process improvement,” said Mike Hardin, the director of Business and Licensing.

Each team presented an “as-is” process map that also identified issues and opportunities for improvements. They then developed a “to-be” process map that shows a future improved process and generated a gap analysis to document the changes that need to be made. These three steps are the core of the LEAN methodology used to train the staff.

It’s all part of the Colorado Secretary of State’s reputation for giving Colorado businesses the tools to thrive.

Under Secretary Wayne Williams, filing rates for new businesses are at record highs and business fees are some of the lowest in the nation.  Williams this year partnered with Gov. John Hickenlooper and created MyBizColorado, a new business start-up tool that supports small business owners across the state.

For their LEAN presentation, Business and Licensing staffers Katy Wallace, Amberdawn Scott, and Colin Whetsel presented on commercial registered agents. For their “as-is,” they talked about the offices’ current process of documenting, updating, managing and maintaining commercial registered agents in the Secretary of State business database. The team identified challenges within the system and recommended developing an online CRA registration application as part of their “to-be” step.

Business and Licensing staff Katy Wallace, Amberdawn Scott, and Colin Whetsel created this gap analysis to improve the commercial registered agent’s process for Coloradans.

The group explained that this solution could increase business data integrity and move away from the resource demand of the current CRA process. Two other groups also presented solutions for more streamlined processes; one to reduce the rejection rate of notary applications and the other to increase the online filing rate for the bingo-raffle program.

“The purpose of training all employees on the methodology is to have a common understanding and shared language throughout the division so that anyone participating on a project team understands what is needed to accomplish our goals,” said Karen Tollefson, the operations support team manager.

“It was exciting to hear each of the teams share their analyses of real challenges facing the Business and Licensing Division,” Hardin said. “The presentations were outstanding, with each team presenting as-is and to-be process maps along with a detailed gap analysis.”

“As the Business and Licensing director, I am very proud of our talented employees.”

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