3 Pillars to Digital Government

The 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA) recently celebrated its one year anniversary. The goal of the legislation is to improve the way citizens interact with the federal government. The ability to provide a modern digital experience to citizens and employees is now a basic expectation for all federal chief information officers (CIOs).

Today, trust in institutions is at an all-time low, setting the stakes for successful digital transformations at an all-time high. Whether the website visitor is a farmer, veteran, educator or senior citizen, the digital experience significantly impacts how they think about the federal government.

Behind every great experience is a great workflow.

The great workflows that will define our 21st-century digital government rely on three pillars:

  • Modern Websites
  • Digitized Government Forms and Services
  • Electronic Signatures

Modern Websites

Every 90 days, there are 3.5 billion visits to government websites, almost half of which are from mobile devices. So, new and redesigned federal websites must meet modern standards, like those recently published by the Technology Transformation Service. A user-centric approach to technology is the key to successful digital transformations.

Digitized Government Forms and Services

Presently, the federal government spends $90 billion on information technology (IT) annually, most of which just maintains existing systems. Many of these legacy systems are costly and inflexible. By digitizing forms and processes, agencies can not only provide more personalized services, but they can decrease costs.

Electronic Signatures

The ability to easily share, review and sign off on documentation is essential to a great workflow. So, digital signatures are critical. They drive increased efficiency, faster time to service and improved processes. Once implemented, the related savings become seed money for new digital transformation initiatives.

The government’s transition from legacy and manual processes to modern digital ones is well underway.

21st Century IDEA is a key component, but it is still gaining traction. Our research found that 55% of federal employees are unaware of the 21st Century IDEA and only 39% of feds told us that customer experience (CX) is their agency’s top priority.

One way to turn this around is by focusing on platform as a strategy. Platforms, such as ServiceNow, offer tools and digital capabilities that agencies can use to speed up their modernization efforts. At the core are portals, virtual customer service agents, automation tools and pre-established cloud-based security controls.

Great experiences drive powerful employee engagement, unleashing productivity and fueling innovation.

All government agencies want to deliver great experiences for their employees and customers. Bad experiences erode trust; great experiences inspire it. CIOs know this, but they are hindered in their digital journeys by complexity, legacy systems and siloed data.

We all share the same goal — simplicity. It begins with understanding how work and data flow through your agency, combined with an outside-in view of your customer interactions. Citizens should be able to interact with the government the way they want, not constrained by outdated legacy systems.

The 21st Century IDEA is a great step in this direction, and we are just getting started.

Jonathan Alboum is the Principal Digital Strategist for the Federal Government at ServiceNow. Before joining ServiceNow, Jonathan was the Public Sector CTO for Veritas Technologies. He has held a variety of senior executive positions in the federal government, including Chief Information Officer for Agriculture Department and Associate CIO for Enterprise Governance and Planning at the General Services Administration.

Leave a Comment


Leave a Reply

Avatar photo Leah Anderson

Really excited to see the impact of the 21st Century IDEA on web design and digital outreach strategies. digital design in the private sector changes so fast, it’ll be great to see how gov contributes to those innovations too

Avatar photo Blake Martin

Great piece, Jonathan. All it takes is one negative online experience with a gov agency to reaffirm the importance of this and future legislation to improve digital CX. I agree with you- we are only just beginning!