September 12, 2014

State of Alabama
Press Release: Medicaid

Suggestion nets bonus for employee, savings for Agency

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A “few simple lines of code” is saving time and money for the Alabama Medicaid Agency, the result of one employee’s innovative idea to automate routine computer tasks in the Agency’s Florence District Office. 

For his initiative in creating computer macros, or shortcuts, to automate office workflow, the State of Alabama Employees’ Suggestion Incentive Program awarded $1,000 to Medicaid Senior Eligibility Specialist Adam Letson on September 2. Letson will receive the $1000 bonus after statewide implementation of his suggestion is completed in the next six months.

“There are many tasks performed in our office on a daily basis that consist of repetitive computer work, such as marking cases that their reviews have been received or finishing Medicare Savings Program reviews,” Letson said in his application. Using the computer system’s macro feature, he was able to drastically reduce the time needed to update the computer system at various points in the application and review process. Agency officials estimate an annual savings of $12,000-16,000 in employee time savings and related benefits.

The Employees’ Suggestion Incentive Program was created to encourage state employees to suggest ways the state can save money or improve the efficiency of state operations. Suggestions must first be recommended by the state agency head who submits the idea with a calculation of the potential savings.

A graduate of the University of North Alabama, Letson has worked for the Florence District Office for seven years. He has always had an interest in computers, but it was in the course of training for his job that he realized that the Agency’s computer system could use macros.

“I read through the help files on the computer system we were using at that time and saw something called macros referenced,” he said. “From there, I just figured it out through trial and error.”

Any other good ideas? “As of this moment, nothing that is completely fleshed out and ready to be made into a suggestion, but I really enjoy trying new methods to make things as efficient as possible,” he said. “I always have ideas that I’m testing in my own job to see if they actually help. Hopefully soon I’ll have another idea to present.”

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