DNR to modernize state license system

Published 10:35 pm Thursday, July 6, 2017

Hunters, anglers and everyone who has a role in selling licenses for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources can anticipate a new electronic license system that will enhance customer service starting in the spring of 2020.

“Over the next two years, we will be modernizing the electronic license system to create a better and more efficient experience for customers — changes that will save the agency as much as $1.5 million,” said Steve Michaels, DNR licensing program director. “Customers will find it easier to purchase licenses and tags online and record their harvests from a mobile device or computer 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.”

The DNR sells licenses through a vendor that administers the electronic license system that allows customers to buy licenses in-person at nearly 1,500 locations around Minnesota, online and by telephone. The contract with the current vendor expires in 2020.

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The first step in modernizing the license system happened in late May when the DNR issued a request for proposals for contractors to bid on a project to develop a new system.

“The new system won’t go into effect for more than two years but we have to begin work now to allow enough time to choose a vendor, design and implement the system, and communicate with customers and license sales agents,” Michaels said. “Across the spectrum of retail, customers are demanding the convenience of modern technology as part of their purchasing experiences, whether it is movie theaters, airlines, or retail stores.”

The DNR sells about 1.5 million fishing licenses and 580,000 hunting and trapping licenses.

Use of the current system continues through March of 2020, and the DNR plans to provide regular updates through the development of the new system.