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Local leaders say upgrade to OpenGov improves several elements of county budgeting

GRAPHIC COURTESY OF CROOK COUNTY - The new county budgeting software is expected to make it more user-friendly and transparent for local residentsLocal leaders have updated Crook County's budgeting process while providing residents more access to the financial document.

The county recently went live on OpenGov Budgeting & Planning, which enables the financial leaders to build and share the budget and manage workforce planning and forecasting while allowing residents to explore and interact with the budget via the county's transparency portal powered by OpenGov.

"This is going to be what takes the county budgeting system to the next level that we have been looking for for quite a while," said Crook County Judge Seth Crawford. "Not only does it make it easier for people to search, it makes it easier for our department heads to upload their information and understand the best way to budget our tax dollars."

Prior to partnering with OpenGov, Crook County relied upon numerous spreadsheets to manage its budgeting and planning process. County financial leaders made the decision to automate the process, turning to OpenGov to provide its staff the necessary resources to complete the budget process.

Crawford explained that the software system holds all the financial data in one place, which makes the data more readily available and enables the county to run more reports to understand different ways to manage departments and lower costs. It cost the county $36,000 but is expected to pay for itself within the next six months.

"OpenGov has proven it is possible to simplify the budget process through modernization," said Crook County Commissioner Brian Barney. "OpenGov offers the tools necessary to streamline the work and allows time to develop and construct an integrated budget that can easily be maintained and shared with employees and residents."

Commissioner Jerry Brummer added that this year's budget process "was the best process we've had since I became a commissioner four years ago."

"Department heads really appreciated the new format and process as much as I did," he said. "We had a very good finance team that took the time to work with everyone, so they understood how to use the software."

With the implementation of OpenGov, Crook County enables a variety of capabilities to modernize its budgeting and planning processes, including reviewing, versioning and approving department budget proposals from a single portal; building a printed and online budget book faster, while preserving institutional knowledge with access to historical records; simplifying and streamlining workforce planning with employee calculation costs and integrated budget planning; and providing residents with critical budget information.

"We are thrilled to bring a modern budgeting solution to Crook County," said OpenGov Regional Sales Manager Greg Balter, "and look forward to working in close partnership to help the county meet its budgeting and planning needs."


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