Governments are overwhelmed balancing consumer expectations, aging workforce, regulations, rapid technology change and fiscal deficits. This blog gathers a community of SMEs who discuss trends and outline how public sector organizations can leverage relevant best practices to drive their software-led transformation and build the future of technology – today!

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Key takeaways from ISM 2018: Post-technology technology in the age of Digital

The annual American Public Human Services Association (APHSA) IT Solutions Management (ISM) conference was recently held in Seattle, Washington. ISM brings together leaders from Federal, State, Local government and the Industry to exchange ideas on emerging trends and imperatives impacting HHS agencies. The past few years have seen discussions around modularity, agile implementation and best-practices related to health and social program management. This year things were different. The focus had shifted.

ISM 2018 discussions focused on business operations and the role technologies play in their [business operations] digitalization.

Both State and Industry speakers, instead of talking about how they implemented a solution, discussed how the solutions that they implemented are impacting (and improving) business operations. Technology was featured as well, but it wasn't about .NET vs. Java, SOA, etc. The emphasis was on how to build on a platform to solve a business problem more quickly.

The inference, backed by recent RFPs in the Child Welfare space, is that States are tired of dealing with the complexity of technology. They don't want to have to oversee the micro-detail of code reviews, multi-vendor COTS integrations between stack layers, assessing most efficient use of licensing in multiple environments from multiple vendors, application or persistence layer integration issues, and all the other here-to-date complex social program solution challenges. States just want a solution that solves today's problem and can either be "thrown away" in the future to solve the new or changed problem, or be agile enough to evolve into part of a truly national IT platform solution. Discussion on the best number of processors for a clustering strategy is out. Way out.

Salesforce, Amazon, and Azure are in ascendance. We are to done talking about technology as fine grained solutions from the code up. These platforms allow States to use technology as an enabler that rapidly solves business problems and quickly pivots in the future.

We are now in the post-technology technology world. Vendors who understand this and can help you navigate your next will be your partners. Those that insist on talking about the myriad of technology decisions to be made miss the forest for the trees. Business operations enablers are the post-technology technology.

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