CIOs take the lead in pursuit of operational efficiencies

Operational efficiency has taken on greater urgency since the pandemic began. CIOs are leaning into automation, digital tech, and the cloud to remove friction and create value.

CIOs take lead in pursuit of operational efficiencies

For Gary Brantley, the road ahead is paved with innovative technologies, and to get there, the CIO of the City of Atlanta has moved full throttle to attain operational efficiencies since the pandemic began.

This has included a move to “collapse several different tools” such as redundant CRM and permitting software packages that various departments and agencies in the city were using, Brantley says.

Another area where Brantley has achieved operational efficiencies is in going entirely paperless since April — no small effort for a municipality that has “huge legislative packets,’’ he says. “We’re really a paper-driven organization.”

Before moving to electronic signatures, “it could take weeks upon weeks for a document to circulate around the city,’’ he says, since one might need as many as 15 signatures. It required a lot of conversations about which processes could go paperless, he adds. “Now, we’re not running around trying to track documents. We’re able to get signatures more efficiently and have speeded up our ability to procure and get projects underway.”

Not only has the return on investment been impressive, but Brantley says in some cases it has eliminated mundane job responsibilities so employees can focus on more mission-critical work.

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