In some circles, “government technology” is derisively treated as an oxymoron. Government agencies and institutions often earn a bad reputation when it comes to implementing new solutions to help citizens. All it takes is a routine visit to the DMV or a few days in court to experience this for yourself. Politicians, critics, and even comedians love to point out governmental inefficiency in a myriad of ways.
But the scale of government work makes it complex. Government institutions squeeze the greatest possible value out of their allocated budgets and remain capable of serving citizens’ needs reliably and consistently.
Add in regulation, compliance, and oversight, and it’s easy to see why even now a vast majority of city and state content is locked up in paper forms and PDF files. In many cases, existing processes need to be re-imagined to make sense in a digital-first environment.
Government institutions don’t need to hire in-house developers and IT specialists to migrate paper processes to the cloud. Reputable managed service vendors like Blue Technologies can develop, implement, and maintain government technology solutions as a service.
The State of Ohio and Local Government Technology – An Overview
In many respects, Ohio’s state and local governments have the same concerns and face the same obstacles as every other administration in the U.S. To create customized solutions that speak to Ohio residents’ needs, technology providers need to address what makes Ohio unique.
The State of Ohio has already established precedence for investing in state-of-the-art government technology. This is a clear fact to anyone who glances at the state’s interactive budget website, the first of its kind.
Much of the state’s recent strides forward are a direct result of CIO Stu Davis, whose centralized data and private cloud infrastructure have paved the way to better and faster technological services for citizens throughout the state. As the state of Ohio prepares to replace Davis after 21 years of government service, state lawmakers are beginning to look for new paths forward.
One of the key results of Davis’ tenure was a move towards greater infrastructural efficiency. Instead of having the state pay for separate infrastructure for 26 different government agencies, it consolidated them into a single datacenter managed and administered by IBM.
There is further to go from here. Davis has taken the state of Ohio from spending nearly 80% of its technology budget on infrastructure to spending closer to 50%. However, the goal has always been to go even lower, to 30% or even 20%.
Reducing infrastructure costs to take up an even smaller portion of the state technology budget will require state institutions to entrust their IT assets to cost-saving managed network vendors that offer infrastructure as an on-demand service. This is a move that Ohio leadership eagerly anticipates. According to Stu Davis himself: “I don’t see state government being in the infrastructure business very much longer.”
What Can State Institutions Do on Their Own?
Stu Davis was instrumental in showing state institutions how leveraging economies of scale through centralized infrastructure can generate significant value. However, there is much Ohio state and city agencies can do on their own.
When paired with expert consulting and a proven track record for long-term, big-picture thinking, government technology can vastly improve citizens’ quality of life. Moving data storage to a centralized data center is just one step towards the goal of making Ohio a technological leader among U.S. States.
Advances in planning, integration, and staffing can generate value that compounds along with state growth. This will allow government office administrators and their teams to do more than ever before.
• Planning and Efficiency. Government planning must enjoy best-in-class visibility and transparency. To move forward, agencies need to use comprehensive tools for planning and efficiency using up-to-date data and analytics.
• Integration. As long as government agencies operate in organizational silos, they will be unable to fully earn public trust and praise. Technological integration through content management and API development can reduce time otherwise spent on manual interdepartmental processes.
• Staffing Optimization. It takes more than technology to make government processes run smoother. Scheduling, time management, and human resources tasks stand to benefit from optimization through workflow automation.
Invest in Expert Government Technology Consulting
Offering taxpayers the visibility and transparency they demand while ensuring regulatory compliance is no easy matter. Citizens and politicians on both sides of the aisle have a deep, vested interest in eliminating waste and improving the efficiency of state agency processes.
Qualified consulting from IT specialists with experience developing, deploying, and maintaining managed network solutions for government is key to deriving optimal value from these initiatives. State-of-the-art workflow automation can reduce taxpayer fees, improve response times, and streamline state operations.
Improve the efficiency of your agency or institution by investing in government technology designed for long-term value. Talk to a Blue Technologies expert today.