PNNL wins award for software system

A software system that helps staff at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory understand and comply with the thousands of safety, legal and other requirements and procedures they must follow has earned the lab a spot on the InformationWeek 500 list.

The list honors the most innovative users of business information technology.

The Department of Energy laboratory in Richland was ranked 106th on the annual list, which is compiled by the technology magazine InformationWeek. This is the fifth year in a row PNNL has been recognized.

Other companies in this year's list include PACCAR Inc. (No. 1), American Airlines Inc. (No. 11), Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc. (No. 110) and Microsoft Corp. (No. 241).

PNNL was recognized for developing the "How Do I?" system for its more than 4,900 staff.

Also known as HDI, the system helps staff easily and quickly navigate the steps and procedures that staff are required to follow.

Before, PNNL's requirements and procedures were provided to staff in a lengthy narrative format. HDI uses a simple, graphical representation of the steps in each process.

The graphical work flow is interactive and allows staff to click on each step to gather more information as needed, such as links to online forms and detailed secondary processes. HDI organizes this information in one central, streamlined system.

"HDI is helping us increase staff productivity and operational compliance while reducing staff frustration," said Jerry Johnson, PNNL chief information officer. "Streamlined systems like this allow our scientists and engineers to spend more time on their world-class research."