101 HMIS Guide for Agency Leadership

What is HMIS?

Minnesota’s Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) is a web-based database used by over 220 homeless service organizations across the state to collect client-level data on households experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Click here for more information about HMIS.

Who is responsible for the operation of HMIS?

The Institute for Community Alliances (ICA) is Minnesota’s HMIS Lead Agency and is responsible for managing its day-to-day operations in Minnesota. Other partners are responsible for maintaining the HMIS software and for providing strategic direction and decision-making in support of Minnesota's HMIS. Click here to learn more about the different stakeholders involved in operating HMIS and their roles.

How does an agency or project get setup in HMIS?

If an agency is new to HMIS or is already in the system and needs to be updated, click here for more information.

How do HMIS user licenses work?

License purchases, license transfers, license deactivations... if your agency is gaining or losing an HMIS user, or if you have questions about how license renewal works, click here for more information.

What is the process for becoming an HMIS user?

Everyone who requests access to HMIS, whether new to the system or an experienced user, must complete online New User Training. Find more details about the user training process here.

What data privacy concerns should I be aware of?

Click here for more information about the responsibility each agency and user bears when entering and accessing HMIS data.

How can I make HMIS work for me?

ICA and the HMIS Governing Board are committed to maximizing the usefulness of HMIS to all stakeholders. Click here for more information about making HMIS work better for your needs.

Why does data quality matter?

In addition to being required by funders to enter accurate and complete information into HMIS, agencies can secure benefits for themselves and others by ensuring that the data recorded in HMIS is of a high quality. Click here to learn more about why it matters to have good data quality.

How can I make the most of my HMIS data?

Collecting, inputting, and cleaning HMIS data takes time. Why not make the most of that effort and use HMIS data for more than just required funder reporting? Using HMIS data to evaluate program performance is a great way to do just that! Click here for more information.

Where do I go if I have a question about HMIS?

The Institute for Community Alliances (ICA) maintains a variety of resources to help agencies and users effectively utilize HMIS. Click here to find out what resources are available.

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