The United States Department of Agriculture is the United States federal executive department responsible for developing and executing U.S. federal government policy on farming, agriculture, and food. It aims to meet the needs of farmers and ranchers, promote agricultural trade and production, work to assure food safety, protect natural resources, foster rural communities and end hunger in the United States and abroad.
Farm Production and Conservation (FPAC) is the Department’s focal point for the nation’s farmers and ranchers and other stewards of private agricultural lands and non-industrial private forest lands. FPAC agencies implement programs designed to mitigate the significant risks of farming through crop insurance services, conservation programs and technical assistance, and commodity, lending, and disaster programs.
In Fiscal Year 2018, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue approved the formation of the FPAC Business Center (BC), a new organizational entity that would consolidate 15 mission support functions of the FSA, NRCS, and RMA agencies and provide improved services to its customers. Fundamental to the success of this consolidation was the implementation of the FPAC Employee Care Center (ECC) Portal, designed for highly efficient delivery of a wide range of enterprise services via a unified location.
Consolidation initiatives in the dispersed and complex FPAC Department have often been slow and ineffective due to broad differences in delivery processes as well as various technology limitations. Creative’s User-Centered Design (UCD) and Agile delivery methodology, leveraging the ServiceNow Human Resources Service Delivery (HRSD) module, resulted in an unprecedented employee experience platform for the FPAC Department.
The architecture of the Employee Care Center Portal was tailored specifically to the overarching operational needs of USDA FPAC, addressing the lack of automation and digital transformation within the organization’s Human Resources department. The new Employee Care Center supports:
Leveraging the ServiceNow HRSD, Creative developed a comprehensive digital HR transaction processing platform with features including:
A robust Service Catalog and Employee Service Center that presents customers with specific HR case request types, each of which are configured to display the correct electronic form for each type. As opposed to manual processes in the past, the digital system allows customers to submit the required data and attachments, provides relevant documentation and job aids, and eliminates the manual entry of the SF-52 and other government forms.
ServiceNow roles, groups, and skills, developed to ensure HR case security and management, and enable the automatic assignment of each case to agents with the relevant skills and permissions.
ServiceNow workflows and assignment and matching rules, designed to eliminate manual assignment of cases. The new system automatically routes cases to the appropriate teams, track approvals and task completions, and enable service level agreements.
Our team achieved the ECC Portal MVP deployment in just 12 weeks following the project kick-off. Leveraging the ServiceNow HR Service Delivery product, the Employee Care Center (ECC) Portal fundamentally transformed the way HR services are delivered by the agency. It offered FPAC an integrated employee experience and has significantly reduced the administrative burden, reduced manual errors and has offered transparency for the service requests.
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