REVIEWER: Peter Haas, director of Technology for the Supreme Court of Louisiana.

BACKGROUND: The Supreme Court of Louisiana is located in New Orleans. Over the past three years, the court has overcome several obstacles, including: recovering from the hurricane, admitting a total of 22,500 new attorneys to the bar in 2007 and exceeding clearance rates by 100 percent. All of these processes were handled using a laborious manual process. The court was in need of significant changes in its operating environment and needed collaboration tools that could increase productivity.

PLATFORMS: Administrative portal server; automation, search and services server; database server; application server; collaboration server; business process management (BPM) server; and Web services.

PROBLEM SOLVED: The Louisiana Supreme Court (LASC) wanted a clear and simple way to service its constituents along with providing a secure and trustworthy system. With these motivations, the Court implemented a BPM system that would provide a stable, secure, trustworthy and fail-safe solution, allowing the right people to access the right information at the right time. The challenge that presented itself was the six-member IT staff that was responsible for efficiency and effectiveness to successfully undertake this project. The staff was in charge of implementing and supporting the system that would be the integrated tool which would enable business and project leaders at all levels to have better insight and control over the development lifecycle. In the end, the BPM solution development lifecycle enabled the team to quickly develop, test and implement enterprise solutions with close collaboration with the business owners.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Using BEA AquaLogic BPM Suite, the court is now able to achieve benefits in a number of areas. The court personalized several community environments using the end-user-customizable portal; improved development productivity and simplified the application development process through the separation of business process from application logic; and implemented the BPM solution with the security platform, Active Directory, printing and existing applications such as auto printing and email. The BPM solution services both the wide public (more than 4 million residents of the state of Louisiana) as well as users in the court system. The system has already streamlined the Certificate of Good Standing process and is currently rolling both e-filing and case management processes. LASC is already recognized as one of the most technologically advanced courts for its ability to recover from Hurricane Katrina along with continuing to serve its public constituents before, during and after the disaster. The court expects to increase productivity by at least 50 percent.

STRENGTHS: The new system’s capabilities ensure trust and security while enabling access to content and documents in a timely manner. As proven by Hurricane Katrina, a paper-based system can cause long-term damage to the operations of a community. The online BPM suite not only keeps electronic copies of all supporting documents, but also allows requests and renewals online and access to supporting documents. This, coupled with the disaster recovery and failover plan, enables the government to maintain the public’s trust.

WEAKNESSES: Support leaves something to be desired. We are often sent to another support rep or have to wait a long time for a reply, which on a few occasions has caused us to miss goals.

SELECTED CRITERIA: Compared to the other products the court was reviewing, the BEA AquaLogic BPM Suite packaged up every application that was needed to improve the business and IT workflow. Efficiencies and cost savings were only a small part of what was factored into the decision process. Getting the correct court information to the right place at the right time was the most important factor, which was a key strength with BEA AquaLogic BPM Suite.

DELIVERABLES: The BEA AquaLogic BPM Suite delivered the following: enhanced productivity at district offices, more consistent service to external users, reduced virtual court process time, unified channels for filing various documents, prompt routing based on business rules and elimination of complex work environments.

VENDOR SUPPORT: In advance of the project, the BEA support team provided the explanation and guidance that allowed the court to see the end result. The BEA team was a pleasure to work with and provided the utmost support throughout the process.

DOCUMENTATION: The documentation is complete and easy to understand.

BEA AquaLogic BPM Suite
BEA Systems, Inc.
2315 North First Street
San Jose, CA 95131
(408) 570-8000
http://www.bea.com/

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