Non-profit housing programs and service providers are critically important to the communities they serve. The Point in Time (PIT) Count is essential for furthering each agency’s success and ability to support the homeless community. What if there was a way to simplify PIT Count process so that the weeks leading up to the count aren’t as stressful or chaotic? Well, there is. Nutmeg Consulting’s PIT application could be the solution to your data collection woes.
The Importance of the Point in Time Count
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires Continuum of Care (CoC) agencies to participate in the Point in Time Count each year, typically on a dedicated night in January. On this night, agencies must count the number of homeless individuals and families in their community and submit reports to HUD based on their data collection. Legally, to receive funding, agencies must accurately complete the PIT Count.
However, that’s not the only reason the PIT Count must be done – and done correctly. It’s also important because the PIT Count allows stakeholders to review bed and unit utilization and to do a focused count of both people and projects. It helps with data quality evaluation and in some cases, data quality clean-up.
Each agency is essential to its community. If the community doesn’t have accurate information, then it won’t get a handle on where the needs are, which resources are needed and where they are needed the most. An accurate PIT count will have positive results for the community.
Each agency is essential to the communities they serve. Without accurate data collection, the agencies won’t have a handle where services are needed, what types of resources are needed and how to allocate those services and resources. An accurate PIT count will aid in this process and have a positive impact on the community.
The Point in Time Count App
The process of collecting and sharing the PIT Count data has evolved over the years. Steps have been eliminated or automated as technology has advanced.
At Nutmeg Consulting, we believe that the agencies who perform this essential work should have the best possible tools at their disposal. With limited time and resources, agencies need tools that will simplify the PIT Count process. We offer both a Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) Report Card tool and a PIT app.
Our PIT app is modified each year to fit the slight changes that are made yearly to the PIT rules.
The PIT Process
The PIT app allows each agency in the Continuum of Care (CoC) to import data from HMIS. From there the PIT app will organize the data based on the current PIT count data standards. The PIT app will generate all the necessary population reports related to the PIT count as well as the Housing Inventory chart.
Our team at Nutmeg will assist with getting your community set up in the PIT application and then we can schedule trainings throughout the PIT count process. We will demonstrate the reports generated by the PIT application to help with data clean up as well as how to generate the reports to submit to HUD.
We will be available to provide assistance through all phases of the PIT count process, from preparing the housing inventory chart to evaluating the population count data and reviewing the population and sub/population tables.
If anyone runs into any problems or has any questions, you can always contact our help desk for support.
The PIT Process Timeline
The PIT process itself never stops. Preparation should begin once HUD confirms the data from the previous year’s count.
Once the submission is sent, there is a validation process. In this process, Abt associates (HUD Consultants) analyze the PIT data and Housing Inventories. Then they submit questions to CoC’s. Once the submissions have been finalized and accepted by HUD, our team at Nutmeg starts next year’s PIT process.
The Benefits of the PIT App
For agencies in Connecticut that use an HMIS, the key benefit of the PIT app is that it can pull the data directly from the HMIS, greatly simplifying the Point in Time Count process. In the past, users had to manually enter data into tables. Now the data migrates directly.
If an agency is outside of Connecticut, not to worry. The PIT application can accept a CSV export from your Communities HMIS. The data from the HMIS CSV will be used to populate the PIT count tables and Housing Inventory.
Domestic violence programs, Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) programs, and other agencies not required to use the CoC HMIS can still use Nutmeg’s PIT application. If the agency is using a comparable database to HMIS or a database that can generate a CSV or excel style export, then the PIT app can be set up to accept the data.
In preparation for the PIT count, we can take data from the previous year via export from HUD’s repository (HDX) and import it into the PIT app. The PIT app can take that information and break out the projects to formulate the fields you need. While non-HMIS users will still be required to enter some data manually, the PIT app greatly reduces how much manual labor will be required.
Schedule a Demo of Our App Today
If you’re interested in finding out how the PIT app can help your agency and your community, schedule a demo with us. We’ll walk you through how the app works and discuss your current data collection methods.
Our PIT app tool is a fantastic solution, but it’s not the only solution we offer. It might not be exactly what you need – but let us find out what we can do for you. We will discuss your hurdles and barriers and find out how we can solve your problems. We can find a time-saving solution for you.
Contact us today to learn more about how Nutmeg can simplify the Point in Time Count process for your agency.