Public Sector IT Modernization
The public sector has long been feeling the dragging weight of outdated processes and technologies, but experiences during the pandemic have allowed these issues to finally receive the overdue attention that they require. The survey underpinning Deloitte’s “Seven pivots for government’s digital transformation” revealed that three quarters of respondents asserted that the pandemic accelerated their governments’ digital transformation.1 While that is encouraging, 80% of those respondents also indicated that their organizations’ digitization efforts have not gone far enough. Though public sector organizations may acknowledge that they need to modernize, and that modernization efforts have escalated recently, they may not recognize which areas need attention in order to reach “digital maturity”. The following seven “digital pivots” were highlighted as pivots that would result in government services that have core characteristics of “being digital”:
Data mastery: Aggregating, activating, and connecting siloed, underutilized data by embedding it into services and operations to increase efficiency and enhance service delivery. Through data mastery, data and systems can be interoperable between agencies, and governments could allow citizens to opt-in to data sharing as well.
Flexible, secure infrastructure: Implementing technology infrastructure that balances security and privacy needs with the ability to flex capacity according to demand. Embracing cloud infrastructure and cybersecurity strategies will be important aspects in digital transformations.
Digitally savvy, open talent network: Retooling training programs to focus on digital competencies, and staffing teams through flexible, contingent talent models to rapidly access in-demand skill sets and flex the organization’s workforce based on the organization’s need. Technical skills such as data science are critical, and government agencies may need to train their existing workforce with these skills while the demand exceeds the supply of these skilled workers.
Ecosystem engagement: Working with external business partners including R&D organizations, technology incubators, and startups to gain access to resources such as technology or people to increase the organization’s ability to improve and innovate. Eighty-five percent of respondents said that engaging with external business parents is positively impacting their agencies.
Intelligent workflows: Implementing and continuously recalibrating processes that make the most of both human and technological capabilities to consistently produce positive outcomes and free up resources for higher-value actions. Automation helps agencies gain efficiency and speed while reducing paperwork and backlogs.
Unified customer experience: Delivering a seamless customer experience built around a 360-degree view of the customer that is shared companywide so that customers experience coordinated digital and human interactions that are useful, enjoyable, and efficient in immersive, engaging environments. Citizens want experiences similar to what they might receive in the private sector, rather than being left on their own to find which department in which agency can and will help them.
Innovation and new business models: Innovating the organization’s array of business models by adopting new business models to adapt to changing constituent needs and improving service delivery. If agencies can break free from traditional business methods, they will find new possibilities for effective service delivery.
1 Deloitte, 2021, “Seven pivots for government’s digital transformation: How COVID-19 proved the importance of “being” digital”