Dept. of Safety staff instructed not to tell public about computer glitches

Department of Safety and Homeland Security officials told employees not to tell the public about glitches causing problems in the launch of a new driver license computer system last month, according to WTVF TV.

The new computer system was two years in the making and was finished on budget at $30 million. (Note: News release HERE.) But when it went online in mid-February, some employees did not seem ready.

On March 3, we found people waiting for hours at the drivers license reinstatement center on Murfreesboro Road. Security personnel tried to calm nerves as people were told to come back the next day.

“I’ve been here Monday and Tuesday at 8:45 and I didn’t get,” one customer said.

… A day after the Shelbyville complaint all district managers were told, “Do not tell customers that we have a new system that is not working.” The email continued, “We don’t want the public to think we spent 30 million dollars on a system that doesn’t work when that is not the problem.”

Hogan responded after we showed him the email, “The person that wrote that email was just trying to stress, ‘let’s be patient.’ We know there’s a transition period. This is not something we expect to last a long time.”

Hogan emphasized the system does in fact work, but some employees were not comfortable using it.
… “Were there some minor glitches? Absolutely, but overall, I think we are past that and everyone should be pleased with the product,” Hogan said.