Officials with the state Department of Health and Human Services will be following a business plan for the first time.
DHHS CEO Courtney Phillips says the business plan will keep the department accountable, something she says is already underway.
“We still have work to do, but I think most people would attest to the department has become more open, more approachable, and we have a sense of customer service and pride and culture that we’re changing our department,” Phillips tells reporters during a news conference.
Phillips says the plan will keep the department accountable to the public and help shore up its weaknesses. Phillips says a top priority is hiring the right people and keeping them.
“In terms of our recruitment, retention, making sure we obtain the best and the brightest, making sure we’re prepared when we have a turnover in our workforce, because of retirement; making sure those basics are in place,” according to Phillips.
The governor has given DHHS priorities to consider, such as becoming more efficient and effective, making its services more customer-focused, improving public safety, and reducing regulations.
Gov. Pete Ricketts says the plan should focus the department toward improvement.
“No matter how well we do something today, we can do a better job tomorrow,” Ricketts says. “And that’s really a culture we want in all of our state agencies, is this idea of continuous improvement; that we’re bench-marking how we’re doing today, we’re setting goals for how we’re going to do it tomorrow and then once we reach those goals, we set new goals. And it’s always about continuous improvement of how we deliver our services so we can do a better job. That’s really the culture change we want throughout our state government.”
AUDIO: Gov. Pete Ricketts hosts news conference on DHHS business plan. [7:45]