In Government IT, Innovators Are Gaining Ground

Government IT is finally making moves to keep up with the digital age by attracting some new talent to its cutting-edge endeavors. William D. Eggers, the executive director of Deloitte’s Center for Government Innovation, shares his insights. In an interview with CIO Insight, Eggers discusses with Pat Burke how attracting talent to the government sector is so important.

Renewing Government Trust

The greatest challenge that governments may face initially is attracting the right talent to the job, since pay or prestige might be lacking. However, governments can entice talented individuals with the lure of problem-solving opportunities. Additionally, governments need to speed up their hiring process so they can get the best individuals working quickly. They likewise should be open to the idea of a different employee, like a person who freelances.

The mindsets surrounding government are changing, and the idea of innovation is slowly becoming associated with government IT because they are enacting change. According to Eggers, there are five characteristics that are essential to digital transformation: “a belief in openness, user-centricity, co-creation, simplicity and agility.” He believes that governments’ digital worldview is becoming just as important as the labels of “conservative” or “liberal.”

For a company that does not innovate, they fail to keep up with their competitors and risk being phased out. For governments that fail to innovate, they run the risk of losing the trust of their citizens. In today’s United States, trust for the government is at an all-time low, according to Eggers. This is because citizens do not have much opportunity to interact with government officials.

The United States will not become a digital nation overnight, and in fact it will take a great deal of time. There are decades of legacy systems that will take a great amount of time to update. According to Eggers, the best way to change government agencies’ poor reputation is by hiring the right people to inspire change. Having the right people backing innovation is what will make all the difference.

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