CHEYENNE - With the launch of the Department of Workforce Services' (DWS) online Unemployment Insurance Tax System later this month, the upgrade of Wyoming's Unemployment Insurance system will be complete.
The claimant side of the system was opened last year, allowing workers filing for unemployment insurance benefits to do so completely online. Now, with the tax system launch, employers will have the ability to file reports, authorize payments, file appeals and make account changes online.
"It was vitally important to us that we built a sustainable, efficient, effective platform for the end user," Director Cooley said. "At the end of the day, we're here to serve the citizens of Wyoming and having a modern unemployment insurance system allows us to do that in an efficient manner."
The previous system, which was housed on a mainframe computer running programs written in the 1980s, did not have self-service capabilities and was not accessible online. In addition, the system required a COBOL programmer to run, and all the department's qualified technicians were approaching retirement.
The upgrade, which makes Wyoming the first state to host both its benefits and tax systems in the Microsoft Azure Cloud, would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the department's unemployment insurance staff, Director Cooley said. "What they've accomplished is really remarkable. The entire unemployment insurance team worked countless hours with software developers, vendors, and other states to ensure they were crafting an effective solution that would be in place for years to come."
Director Cooley said the new cloud-based system can be replicated to allow other states to adopt a similar solution.