Integrated Data is the Key for State Agencies to Become More Customer-centric

During the past few years, there has been considerable discussion and media attention about the impact of digital natives (Millennials and Generation Z) in business and culture – specifically the younger generations’ expectations of how technology enables human interactions. These shifts in expectations aren’t isolated to private-sector business, state and local government agencies are being similarly challenged to think differently about technology and how it is used to modernize the relationships between citizens and their governments.

For a long period of time, state agencies have been built on a foundation of bureaucracy, process and structure, imposing governmental culture and value systems on the citizens and organizations that interact with them. The impact of this is not only in the inherent inefficiencies that have been created, but also in the steadily increasing governmental costs associated with providing service. Fortunately, the environment is changing. Government agencies are increasingly looking to private industry as an example of modern customer-centric interactions and the internal capabilities needed to enable them.

While these are fundamentally people-and-process interactions, they cannot take place in the modern environment without technology and data. As a result, it is no surprise that state IT functions find themselves at the center of their organizations’ transformation efforts. Government CIOs, in turn, are adopting the operating models, strategies, processes and technologies of their business counterparts to address their organizations’ needs.

State IT organizations have been some of the strongest proponents of IT service management, enterprise architecture and data governance standards. While it may appear that these approaches perpetuate the bureaucratic mindset, in reality, they establish a framework where the lines between government/private industry can be blurred, and citizens can benefit from the strengths of government organizations in new and innovative ways.

The modern state IT organization is:

Transparent – Service-centric approaches to state IT are enabling agencies to leverage an ecosystem of public and private partners to support their organizational mission. Simultaneously, data and processes are integrating for transparency, while harvesting insights that support continuous improvement.

Responsive – With ITSM process improvements, state IT organizations are not only capable of being more responsive to the needs of citizens and staff, but also to changes in the technology, legislative and business environments. Structured operations and high-quality data make it easier to identify and address changes and issues.

Connected – Enterprise Architecture is enabling agencies to maintain a trustworthy core of information needed to support decision-making and integrate that core with cutting-edge technology capabilities, such as IoT, geospatial data, operational technology and mobile devices to enable connected insights on-par with private-industry initiatives.

State processes have always been data-centric – collecting, processing and analyzing information to support the agency’s charter. Recently, however, the interpretation of this charter has changed to include a stronger focus on the efficient use of resources and the effectiveness of the organization in making a positive impact on its served community. While standards provide a framework for transparency, responsiveness and connectivity, achieving success relies strongly on implementation. How IT systems are implemented, both internally to the organization and in conjunction with the broader ecosystem of public and private partner organizations, is critical for determining whether the organization’s charter can be effectively fulfilled in the context of modern interactions and under the present-day cost constraints.

Blazent is a recognized industry leader in providing IT data quality solutions – helping companies, governments and state agencies receive more value from their existing IT systems investments by making data more complete and trustworthy. As your agency looks to leverage emerging technology to improve operations, harness the experience of service-provider partners and engage with citizens in modern and innovative ways, Blazent has the solutions and experience working with state governments and their agencies to streamline operations and literally generate millions in savings.

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