How technology is changing government capabilities

Aug 12, 2015

Cloud 10.jpgGovernment is often seen as a huge monolith that relies on legacy processes to deliver services and keep communities running. However, this is no longer the case, as many agencies are adopting technology to improve their capabilities and become more agile. Among government IT solutions, there are a number of options that are helping bolster government operations. Let's take a look at how agencies are using some of these systems to their advantage:

1. More dexterity
A number of moving parts make up the whole of government. As such, it can be difficult to enact broad adjustments and encourage widespread innovation. FedTech's Ryan Petersen likened government to an aircraft carrier, noting that although it's a large and powerful vessel, it lacks the agility to quickly change course. Technology is making this lumbering type of government into a thing of the past. By investing in newer assets like the cloud, agencies are able to deliver efficiency and be more dexterous in their processes.

"Agencies such as the Transportation Department intend to use a mix of public and private clouds to build technology infrastructures that give them the flexibility cloud provides while maintaining a level of control they are comfortable with," Petersen wrote.

2. Prepared for the challenges ahead
In the fast-paced technology environment, today's solutions may not be viable tomorrow. For this reason, government technology solutions must be prepared to handle these emerging challenges. During Brocade's Federal Forum 2015, government CIOs emphasized the need for developing more flexible networks across agencies, FedScoop reported. This will not only help update legacy processes, but ensure that federal organizations are prepared for the years to come.

"It's all about quality with speed," Commerce Department CIO Steve Cooper said. "If I could speed up everything that I'm doing in terms of actually delivering solutions, outcomes and value as defined by my customers … then I can better manage risk."

3. Excels "always-on" demands
One of the biggest issues with legacy government processes is that they are mostly reaction-based. It also traditionally takes a long time to get things done with these methods. However, technology allows organizations to meet citizen demands for an "always-on" government. As Microsoft noted, assets like the cloud enable government agencies to be more responsive to demands while also remaining fiscally accountable and meeting compliance requirements. This type of transparency will not only build up agency reputation but also ensure that they are able to deliver the best services possible to their communities.

Government can also use big data analysis to head off trends and meet constituent needs faster than ever. This will help improve overall satisfaction and provide insight to boost federal decision-making capabilities. As citizens increasingly expect their officials to be on top of major issues, technology will be a valuable asset in meeting these requirements.

While government has traditionally been slow to act, technology is rapidly changing this. By adopting resources like the cloud and big data tools, organizations can better support their operations and ensure that they are able to move quickly as needed.