Adaptive security, citizen digital identity, and multichannel citizen engagement are among the Top Ten government technology trends that must be on the radar of a public sector CIO over the next 12 to 18 months, according to Gartner.
Rounding out the top 10 government technology trends for 2019-2020 includes: agile by design; digital product management; anything as a service (XaaS); shared services 2.0; digitally empowered workforce; analytics everywhere; and augmented intelligence.
The technologies have the potential to optimise or transform public services and government CIOs should include these trends in their strategic planning over the next 12 to 18 months, according to Gartner.
“Now more than ever, technology priorities must be established in the context of business trends such as digital equity, ethics and privacy, widening generational chasms and the need for institutional agility,” said Gartner research vice-president, Rick Howard.
“Public sector leaders expect government CIOs to find ways technology can reduce costs, create efficiencies and improve outcomes for citizens and businesses. They also expect CIOs to consider the social, technological, economic, environmental and political trends that impact the constituents they serve.”
In a digital society, forward-looking government officials know that “policy is the technology and technology is the policy,” Howard said.
“Any government service delivered at scale is underpinned by a host of technologies. If the success of these business projects is compromised by poor implementation of technology, then the political objectives are compromised, too.”
According to Gartner, CIOs can use these trends to engage stakeholders, demystify concepts and promote discussion about their value to citizens and society.
Gartner gave a rundown of the top 10:
An adaptive security approach treats risk, trust and security as a continuous and adaptive process that anticipates and mitigates constantly evolving cyber threats. It acknowledges there is no perfect protection and security needs to be adaptive, everywhere, all the time.
Citizen digital identity
Digital identity is the ability to prove an individual’s identity via any government digital channel that is available to citizens. It’s critical for inclusion and access to government services, yet many governments have been slow to adopt them. Government CIOs must provision digital identities that uphold both security imperatives and citizen expectations.
Multichannel citizen engagement
Governments that meet citizens on their own terms and via their preferred channels, such as in person, by phone, via mobile device through smart speakers, chatbots or via augmented reality, will meet citizen expectations and achieve program outcomes. According to a 2018 survey, more than 50 per cent of government website traffic now comes from mobile devices.
Agile by design
Digital government is not a “set and forget” investment. CIOs must create a nimble and responsive environment by adopting an agile-by-design approach, a set of principles and practices used to develop more agile systems and solutions that impact both the current and target states of the business, information and technical architecture.
Digital product management
Often replacing a “waterfall” project management approach, which has a poor track record of success, digital product management (DPM) involves developing, delivering, monitoring, refining and retiring “products” or offerings for business users or citizens. It causes organisations to think differently and delivers tangible results more quickly and sustainably.
XaaS covers the full range of IT services delivered in the cloud on a subscription basis. The XaaS model offers an alternative to legacy infrastructure modernisation, provides scalability and reduces time to deliver digital government services.
Shared services 2.0
Shared services 2.0 shifts the focus from cost savings to delivering high-value business capabilities such as enterprise-wide security, identity management, platforms or business analytics.
Digitally empowered workforce
A digitally enabled work environment is linked to employee satisfaction, retention and engagement – but the government currently lags other industries in this area. A workforce of self-managing teams needs the training, technology and autonomy to work on digital transformation initiatives.
Gartner refers to the pervasive use of analytics at all stages of business activity and service delivery as analytics everywhere. It shifts government agencies from the dashboard reporting of lagging indicators to autonomous processes that help people make better decisions in real time.
Gartner recommends that government CIOs reframe artificial intelligence as “augmented intelligence,” a human-centred partnership model of people and artificial intelligence working together to enhance cognitive performance.