Episode 3: Dave Montague – exploring the human service worker side of technology

On this episode I’m talking with friend and colleague, Dave Montague.

Dave and I worked together at the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI) twice. Once as colleagues, and once with him as my boss (yes, we’re still friends). He’s the heart and soul of some important online projects serving new immigrants to Ontario, such as Settlement.Org, SettlementAtWorkInMyLanguage, OCASI’s Online Client Management System (OCMS),  and more.

In this episode, I wanted to explore the human service worker side of things.

If we’re going to talk about technology in human services, we can’t leave the service agencies and workers out. To be aspirational is great. But, what does it take to make it work, practically, day to day?

We know that workers embrace technology in their daily lives. It’s in their hands, pockets and handbags in the form of their phone or smartphone. They’re online, when it makes sense to be. They use technology like most of us use it, to connect, collaborate, learn, share, buy, and waste time.

If technology is painful for them at work, what could make them willing to work through perceived social and technical barriers to embrace technology as a viable tool or channel for service delivery?

Last year, Dave presented a great perspective about how one sector, the immigrant settlement sector in Ontario, has grappled with something that seems so important, building communities of practice, and how technology can help facilitate those communities. I talked to Dave a bit about that, recapping what he learned and the ideas he has to get the sector embracing the potential of technology in their client service.

We spent the rest of our chat discussing use of technology by workers, and how Dave sees uptake of technology trending in the immigrant service sector and beyond.

I hope you enjoy episode 3 of the Technology in Human Services podcast.

You can watch Dave’s presentation here:


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