Becoming Stronger Partners in IRIS – Moving to a Single Consultant Model

By: Heidi Pankoke, Director of Government Relations and Strategic Initiatives


As part of our transition to a single consultant model effective March 1, 2015, we want to make sure our staff is equipped with the tools, resources and training to successfully partner with people during their orientation phase in IRIS. Under this model, the same consultant will support the person through the orientation to enrollment process in IRIS, as well as partner with them on an ongoing basis to put their IRIS plan and budget into action. The single consultant model allows ICs to more quickly begin building partnerships with people in IRIS and to minimize the transitions people go through when they choose TMG as their ICA.


The OC transition project team has been busy revising existing checklists used by OCs and developing new materials that will guide ICs as they support individuals newly referred to IRIS. In addition to the changes associated with the adoption of a single consultant model, ICA certification requires us to provide a choice of three consultants during the first few days after a person is referred to our ICA. Effective March 1, IC Supervisors will be making a brief call to welcome an individual referred to IRIS in their area and offering choice of consultants on their team. By doing so, the IC Supervisor will know who is new to the program in their area and will be able to support the selection of an IC who is well-suited to partner with that person.


Once the individual selects an IC, the IC will then make an initial call to the person to introduce themselves and to prepare for the first visit. Since the IC will be working with the person throughout their orientation phase to IRIS and beyond, there will be more flexibility to take care of the requirements currently associated with the initial and next steps visits and use those early conversations to build a strong partnership from the very beginning of the person’s experience with the TMG ICA.


The Human Resources team and Area Associate Directors are collaborating to streamline IC hiring so that additional consultant capacity is available, especially in the Southeast area, to ensure that people have a choice of IC, as required by the state’s certifications standards for ICAs, and that IC workload is manageable with the addition of the orientation and enrollment responsibilities.


If you have comments or questions about this initiative, feel free to contact your Area Associate Director, or Heidi Pankoke, the project manager, at Please stay tuned for more information about the OC transition project in this newsletter.



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