December 17, 2010
During the holiday season, I always think about my dad. He passed away five years ago this December, and I like to take time to remember all of the important things he taught me. This week, I was thinking about a saying he used to explain how important the "small stuff" is in business. It goes like this:
For want of a nail the shoe was lost.
The moral to the story is—details matter, and DBPR is all details. We are charged with licensing and regulating about 300 different license types for professions and businesses with more than one million licensees. Each license type has a different set of laws and rules and each licensee plays an important role in Florida's economy.
When I first came to DBPR, we wanted to make changes immediately. The public couldn't wade through our forms, and our processing times averaged 70 to 90 days. We quickly discovered that to make things easier and simpler for businesses, we had to look at every detail. We had to scrutinize every application, process and regulatory requirement asking ourselves—"Do we have any authority to require this information or this step? Is this required by board rules? Or is this something a well-intentioned person just thought the government needed to know?" If the item or process was not required by law or rule, we got rid of it. If we didn't use the information for a legitimate or legal purpose, we stopped asking for it.
Gathering and analyzing details is tedious, but critically analyzing every process for potential efficiencies has helped us decrease the time it takes to process a license application to an average of eight days.
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