BYOD: Changing the Landscape of Government Computing

Phil Bertolini, Deputy County Executive/CIO, Oakland County, Michigan
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Phil Bertolini, Deputy County Executive/CIO, Oakland County, Michigan

Challenges in technology to meet enterprise needs in 2014

There are numerous technology challenges facing us in 2014.Technology continues to evolve while our customers/citizens demand services be delivered in many different ways.  Our largest challenge will be to provide true mobility in every task. Mobility impacts services provided internally and externally to the organization. Government employees need mobility to provide services throughout the community such as inspections, public health and public safety.  The management of persona mobile devices through a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy and technology improvements will change the landscape of governmen computing.

Another challenge is what everyone involved in technology is focusing on, cyber security.  We are in an ever growing struggle to keep government
systems and data secure with limited resources.

Trends impacting enterprise business environment

The first trend impacting our world is the use of cloud computing in the government technology arena. Traditionally, governments have been stuck in the model of owning and operating their technologies. The advent of cloud computing has provided the foundation on which shared technology services will thrive.

The second trend that is changing everything we do is mobility. Smartphones and tablets have been outselling PCs for a couple of years now.  The consumers of government technology will be demanding services to be provided in a mobile format.

Areas in business environment where solutions do not yet exist

The problem that many have in the world of technology is that the effort is perceived to be a sprint instead of a long distance run.  There are many truths that lend themselves to the world of technology and the first is that all is never fine.  There will always be the next application or process that needs improved enabling technologies.  Just when you finish one effort another pops up requiring attention and resources.  

Many of the technology providers are stuck in an antiquated licensing model that restricts access to technologies for the medium to small governments due to cost.  In Oakland County, we have worked tirelessly to create a government cloud titled G2G Cloud Solutions. This initiative has been created to combat the traditional technology provision model and make technologies more affordable for all. 

The role of CIOs today

The role of the CIO has morphed over the years going from the role of technology provider with the title of IT Director to a member of the “C Suite” and providing value to the entire organization.  In the world of government the role of CIO has transformed into much more than a leader in technology.  

My word for a CIO

•  To earn a seat at the head table, a CIO must communicate and demonstrate the value the organization receives from the investment in technology.  
•  Having a vision for technology is not enough.  Governments are just like any other organization where strategic decisions can change the way business gets done.  A technology vision must integrate with the overall vision of the organization.

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