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From drowning in policies & regulations documents to finding instant answers: How BRHP is streamlining information accessibility

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About BRHP:

“The environment plays a significant role in shaping our behaviors and opportunities.”

This belief stands as the cornerstone for the Baltimore Regional Housing Partnership’s (BRHP) mission.

“We’ve seen the incredible impact that well-resourced neighborhoods can have on a child’s future,” says Pete Cimbolic, Managing Director at BRHP.

For over 15 years, BRHP has helped low-income families access housing in opportunity areas. They determine opportunity areas by assessing 21 data points – mainly around education, employment and social environment.

This enables families to live in an environment with strong schools, low poverty, and access to employment. This positively influences their well-being and opportunities for success. 

Challenge:

“BRHP operates in a complex regulatory environment. As a federal funded program expanding housing access, nearly every aspect of our work is dictated by intricate policies and legal guidelines,” explained Pete.

It’s like we have to constantly navigate a regulatory maze,” he said. Their team struggled to extract answers from lengthy documents riddled with legal jargon. Something as simple as confirming subsidy eligibility would take hours of sifting through various policies and eligibility documents.

Even when the team was able to locate relevant passages, it was always a challenge to interpret the complicated language used in the documents. “The legal terms were hard to interpret with so many edge cases,” described Pete.

BRHP’s internal wikis, aimed at simplifying information, often did the opposite. “We reached a point where we had enough information yet could not move fast,” said Pete. Improving efficiency seemed like an uphill task .

With recurring questions around regulations and policies, senior leaders became bottlenecks. More and more queries got routed to them which not only added extra pressure to management but also caused the delays.

How Albus Helps:

“The big ‘aha’ moment was when we realized that finding what we needed could be as simple as asking a question,” recalled Pete.

It could get as simple as it can”, he continued. “All we have to do is ask a question, and Albus pulls up exactly what we asked from a huge pile of documents and policies”.

“For many teammates, it felt like magic, haha,” said Pete.

Additionally, Albus auto-train on every document, file and slack channel, eliminating the need for conscious effort to manage or set up those documents, unlike traditional knowledge management software.

BRHP initially used Albus for workplace searches; however, they soon expanded their use cases beyond the wiki search. “We tested 3-4 different use cases of Albus, from AI search to code interpretation, and it has not disappointed even once,” said Pete.

Apart from workplace search, Pete and his team extensively use Albus for:

  • Researching online (specifically policies)
  • Code Interpreter for writing scripts in R and SQL.

What sets Albus apart in online searches is the citation and source it provides along with the answer. This allowed BRHP’s team to deep dive into any specific detail within a particular topic.

“My favorite part is Albus’s ability to interpret complex policies and share them in easy-to-understand language,” Pete reiterated.

The development team leveraged Albus to refine queries and troubleshoot code. “With a few lines of feedback, Albus optimizes our R and SQL scripts,” said Pete. “It’s like having a personal coding assistant.”

The introduction of Albus became a game-changer, transforming into a personal resource for each teammate. The senior management is no longer burdened with every question.

“The team loves how Albus provides instant help whenever needed with proper citation and interpretation”, Pete mentioned excitedly.

With Albus, BRHP were able to tap into new levels of productivity, efficiency, and knowledge accessibility. BRHP was mainly looking for workplace search, however the code interpretation and AI search came as an unexpected bonus for them!

Chintan Bavishi

Product Marketing Manager at Springworks.

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