“It’s hard to approach IT investments in an enterprise manner when there are so many different silos and power centers,” says Miranda. “Piecemeal investment in systems using different vendor and technology standards is the principal reason data access and analysis is so frustrating in government.”
A Need for Speed
Although COVID-19 has receded, governments face an uncertain future. Leaders need to be able to respond quickly when new, pressing citizen issues emerge. They also need a way to measure how their services have improved people’s lives. All of which require real-time data from multiple sources.
Government leaders point to four key capabilities that could help them better meet constituent needs:
- Connecting operational, people, and financial data to business outcomes (43%).
- Quickly changing business processes (37%).
- Enabling fast cycles between planning, execution, and analysis (33%).
- Running multiple planning scenarios (33%).
However, 69% say their teams are lacking in these key capabilities. And addressing this skills shortfall requires breaking a vicious cycle: To attract the talent they need to modernize their systems, government agencies must provide workforce tools that improve the employee experience.
“The federal government is certainly facing this challenge as it competes for workers in areas like Washington, D.C., where there are many commercial companies that compete for the same talent but provide modern tools to the workforce,” says Miranda.
Government leaders understand the urgency of this issue—41% listed faster acquisition and deployment of new skills and teams as a top opportunity for digital growth in the next 12 to 18 months.
Do More on a Limited Budget
While some state and city governments have made notable tech improvements, most still lack the critical capabilities required for data-driven decision-making. Only 13% of government leaders are confident in their team’s ability to model multiple scenarios, and only 1 in 5 are confident their team can provide relevant insights to the broader organization.
“Governments at all levels have sought to improve performance measurement of agency activities, outputs, and outcomes,” says Miranda. “We are finally at a point where combining finance, human resources, and operational data is within reach.”
One reason governments aren’t increasing these investments is because they feel locked into the way things have always been done.