I recently interviewed a caseworker who had quit the business. She had burned out. I assumed I was about to hear a harrowing tale of towering caseloads, insensitive supervision, unruly clients, unreasonable hours, and unsatisfying outcomes. Yes, all of these factors contributed to her eventually quitting. But, the surprising factor that she kept coming back to, believe it or not, was PAPERWORK. That's right, paperwork! 

 She said that she just couldn't seem to keep up. She would put in 60 hours a week and still find herself working at home into the wee hours filling out forms, organizing files, writing reports, and struggling with her computer. There always seemed to be loose ends. She could never stop thinking about the paperwork and wondering what she had forgotten that might be critical to a client. She started to feel guilty about almost everything and felt that she would almost certainly fail someone or be found to be incompetent. 


Caseloads are, of course, the main culprit. Unsatisfying outcomes are the second cause of burnout. But here's the surprise; faulty and inadequate computer systems haunt caseworkers constantly and often send them over the edge. 

§  When files are not integrated within an individual client's case file, the caseworker spends time searching for case notes that have been filed under a different heading.

§  If communication with a client or colleague or a supervisor does not originate from the subject case file, vital communications are often misplaced in the system and cause anxiety for the case worker.

§  When case work software is not comprehensive, too many paper files begin to accumulate alongside electronic data files and become almost completely lost and forgotten.

§  When case workers can't see progress toward positive outcomes, they become discouraged and often despondent. 

In other words, the remarkable fact uncovered in my "mini-study" is that administrative work can often be a greater cause of burn out than actual casework. 


FAMCare's engineers always design from the user's perspective. They know that client interaction is the central task of a caseworker, not filling out reports about the interaction. They design software to support the caseworker's main mission, not replace it. 

§  They designed FAMCare so that you can access it anywhere, on any devise, when you need to. 

§  You can make it your own and not have to force your case file system to fit an impersonal template that doesn't reflect the way you think. 

§  They have included a workflow processor that reminds you when important tasks are due.

§  Their highly secure hosting infrastructure insures that all your data is completely safe and confidential. 

§  And, of course, if you're ever lost or confused, the FAMCare engineers are only a phone call away at all times. 

Caseworkers often let their anxiety go too far and don't want to make it back. We've lost too many talented people to PAPERWORK BURNOUT. 



The FAMCare Blog

Fostering discussions on industry news, effective data management, improved workflow, morale and funding.