Janina Rey Echols Harrison
Leadership changes how operations processes evolve. WIthout innovative leadership, someone with a cutting edge view of techology. Keeping an eye on the future. I am afraid too many higher level government managers are too concerned with protecting their positions to be risk takers. They don’t have the competitive edge that private sector has.
Budgets also will figure into all this. Newer technology requires new equipment, more bandwidth, etc. Used to be I would go to IT and the first thing they said when I asked for something was ‘NO’. I was persistent so they said they needed a new server. I told my boss to cough up for a new server if they needed it and dedicated to our purpose. It also allowed us to be on newer, better, more reliable, equipment, with better capacity and function. It made IT happy! We also bought a wireless bridge to service a couple of our remote buildings, it provided service for more than just us. Again IT happiness. Other divisions would not provide funding for equipment. They determined it was IT’s job to provide it.
Now I see things happening but it is too little too late and time moves ahead to the next development. My mantra that I brought with me from private sector is, bigger, better, faster, more! We (government) always seem to be behind the curve (way behind.) Example: We are bringing in a new budget system. I have already heard from other agencies who are using the system that it shuts down or kicks you off when too many people are in. Now they are going to bring more agencies into it? If it isn’t robust enough to handle the load now, or servers big enough or not enough bandwidth, whatever is causing the problems. It isn’t figured into what the taxpayer is paying for a system once it is implemented.
Collaboration.I used to do programming. I was an end user before I was a programmer. Every keystroke cost me time and cost the company money, so I insisted on minimal keystrokes, more user friendly. This meant more time in programming but cost less once the company put it into production. Government never seems to buy a complete comprehensive system. They opt to leave out modules to cut costs. This cuts functionallity and often require input to more than one system to make up for this. I always get the feeling we buy systems that no ‘real’ company would buy in private sector. Who’s making the decision to buy these? Did anyone take the end user on a test run and ask them how they like it? NO. The taxpayer may not have to pay up front, it is costing them on the backside of the purchase.This is not just an IT issue but shows how one decision affects across the program. In other words there needs to be more collaboration in making decisions. Decisions are made by one area without consideration of impacts on other areas. Government is too compartmentalized to think about what they do and where other impacts might occur.