Probate’s Office will use new software at first of year

Published 3:00 am Thursday, November 20, 2014

While a mobile-friendly website with online tag renewal has been accessible to customers of the Probate Office, a new software will soon be available making online renewals easier and more effective.

Pike County Probate Judge Wes Allen said the update would service not just online customers, but would also help expedite the process of renewing a tag on-site in the licensing department of the courthouse.

“This software is integrated with the state’s web services, the State of Alabama Department of Revenue’s information, so it’s going to be able to have integrated document scanning and other time saving features that will allow current staff to process transaction in a more efficient manner,” Allen said. “That means less waiting time for customers and hopefully that will be a good thing.”

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The licensing department staff often field numerous calls during the course of a workday which slows down service time for walk-in customers, but with the updated online software, Allen said customers would be able to use the “cost estimator” tool in order to predict their tag fees before coming to the courthouse.

“(It’s) one thing we’re really excited about,” Allen said. “This software has a feature – an online cost estimator – that will allow the citizens of Pike County to find the answers to common questions without having to call the probate office. They can go online, look at the cost estimator for what their tag may be, and if it can reduce the number of phone calls we field in a day that will make our staff more efficient. We get numerous phone calls a day.”

While the update may not seem like much, Allen said those working in the department would see added benefits from having an updated software in the courthouse.

“We’ll be able to use plain paper receipts,” Allen said. “In the past, with the software we’ve had, we’ve had to use pre-printed receipts. This is going to save the county money. Just this last year we spent $1,700 on special receipt paper. That doesn’t seem like a lot of money, but we’re looking out for ways that we can cut costs by using plain paper.”

The software is still being tested, but Allen said clerks in the licensing department would begin training on the new system in December and a full roll out is anticipated for January 2015.

“We are extremely excited,” Allen said. “The clerks are extremely excited. We think the decision to partner with Ingenuity as our tag partner is going to result in greater efficiencies and shorter wait times for people who physically come to the courthouse to renew tags. It’s going to result in cost savings and the ability to adapt in a more timely fashion to state law changes.”