Imagine this. You’re a member of your local government’s small and under funded IT department. You have just arrived to work in the morning and checked your email.
Four new emails relating to tech issues are in your inbox from the clerk’s department. Three other departments reached out with minor tech bugs. There are two messages on your voicemail reporting issues with hardware at the police department. The public works department has been waiting to get their new computer systems installed for weeks and sent another follow up email. You’d better get to work on what you can, and accept the fact that some of these things will have to be pushed down on your list of priorities.
Doesn’t this sound like a nightmare? As crazy as this might seem, this is the reality for municipal and county IT departments across the country. A lack of structure and disorganization paired with local governments becoming more reliant on digital infrastructure which is often dated has created a sea of IT tickets for municipal tech workers to organize and work on.
Follow along to learn more about the problems that arise with a poorly organized local IT department, and how modern government technology can mitigate these challenges.
What is Local Government IT?
A local government IT (Information Technology) department installs and maintains computer systems across a county or municipality. The IT team will primarily handle things like the implementation of cybersecurity protocols, updating antiquated technology across departments, installing and maintaining computers, and addressing issues like down wifi, data loss, etc.
When any technological issue arises in one of your governmental departments, the local IT department is the group meant to help you resolve the problem. Some local governments have IT experts on staff as employees while many local governments opt to outsource IT services to 3rd party vendors.
Why Is an Efficient Local Government IT Strategy Necessary?
Professional information technology experts are critical for the success of a modern government in order to keep computer systems functional and secure. As more state, county, and local governments begin to do things like accept permit applications and document requests online, a top notch government IT strategy will be more critical than ever.
What Should a County or Municipal IT Department Handle?
A local government IT strategy should include the following:
Installing and maintain computer networks
Ensuring cybersecurity protocols and training
Regularly embracing new technology across government departments
What Are the Benefits of a Great Government Information Technology Strategy?
Your local government will need to embrace government IT software to improve IT department workflows as well as government management software to improve on embracing new tech and cybersecurity.
Here are a few of the countless benefits of the application of modern information technology in government:
1. More Organization in the IT Department with Automated Reporting
Before making the switch to government management software, the Atlantic City, NJ IT department used solely email to receive and respond to tech issues across government departments. On average, it would take over 48 hours to resolve a ticket, with many tickets taking multiple weeks to address.
In switching to GovPilot’s IT ticketing software, the IT team received reports of tech issues in one organized and timestamped platform. With automated organization of tickets, the information technology issues could be prioritized, responded to, and completed in just minutes instead of days or weeks. Patrick Quinlan, the Chief Information Officer of Atlantic City was quoted saying, "GovPilot’s IT Ticketing module gives us the intel to solve problems that would otherwise take much longer to figure out.”
To learn more about Atlantic City's transformation to government IT software, explore the Atlantic City IT Department Case Study.
2. Government-Wide Digital Infrastructure
Any good IT strategy is focused on regularly bringing new and innovative technologies into the workplace. To accomplish the goal of implementing a modern local government IT strategy, you should consider moving to digitized processes across departments.
Here are some of the ways enterprise government software can improve every department (and lighten the IT team’s workload):
- Streamlined communications: communicating across departments has never been easier. If your IT department needs to follow up on an inquiry, one government-wide platform allows them to reach out to the relevant department official with just a few clicks. In fact, all government departments can reap the benefit of one simple communication platform.
- Online applications & document requests: constituents can do things like applying for permits and document requests directly from the government website. Government software integrates these platforms on your government website and stores relevant applications and documents in the cloud. Simple integration means your IT team won’t stress about IT issues related to setting up & maintaining online application platforms.
- Public Data Visualization: With a public facing GIS map accessed directly on your government's website you can display all sorts of data layers and information that in the past, the public might have called, emailed, walked in to your office, or even submitted FOIAs for. By making public records and information easily accessible in just a few clicks on a GIS map, constituents can easily access information such as voting districts, property ownership and tax assessment data, economic zones, vacant properties, status of reported concerns, and so much more. That adds up to hours of time saved for staff.
- Automated scheduling: anything from an IT ticket to a building inspection request will be automatically assigned to a relevant team member via technology known as robotic process automation. That keeps things proactive and holds government employees accountable to get their work done as soon as possible.
3. Proactive IT Efforts
With the automated generation and storage of professionally formatted reports, your IT department will quickly be able to discover patterns in data trends. With clear insights on which types of issues are reoccurring, the IT department can focus on proactively addressing and mitigating tech issues before they become major problems.
4. Cloud-Based Systems = Built-In Cybersecurity
Keeping your government data secure and backed-up is critical for the success of your community and privacy of your constituents. The IT department needs to understand cybersecurity best practices to prevent ransomware attacks and data loss.
Many modern IT teams are opting to move away from physical storage of government data by turning to cloud-based government management software. The cloud automatically backs-up all relevant government data, meaning your IT strategy is extremely proactive. Additionally, the IT department will save a ton of time not needing to maintain physical data servers.
5. 24/7 IT Ticketing
IT software can process, timestamp, and organize IT tickets at any time, day or night. That means essential departments such as emergency services can be kept operational even if a tech issue arises, and reported problems can be prioritized for resolution.
Application of Government IT - In Conclusion
Embracing digital infrastructure can significantly benefit your IT department and local government as a whole. In embracing government IT ticketing software, your local government IT workers won’t have to stress about organizing, responding to, and fixing tech issues across departments. One seamless platform will keep everything organized and ensure that no tech tasks slip through the cracks.
Implementing government management software across your government departments will also improve on the other two critical components of a great government IT strategy: embracing modern government technology, and cybersecurity.
To learn more about how government technology can transform your community as a whole, book a free consultation.
Read on for more helpful tips on improving your local government:
- Government Digital Transformation: What it Means for Local Governments
- What the Infrastructure Bill Means for Your Local Government
- What the American Rescue Plan Act Means for Your Local Government
- Cloud Vs. In-House Server: Which is Best For Your Government
- How to Recruit Government Workers
- How to Train Government Workers on Cybersecurity
- How to Build a 15-Minute City
- How Municipalities Can Encourage Local Economic Development
- Best Court Management Software: What to Look For in Judicial Tech
- Building Inspections 101: How Municipalities Can Improve Public Safety
- Municipal Planning: Reclaiming Your City Streets
- What is Disaster Resilient Infrastructure?
- Disaster Preparedness: How Local Governments Build Resilient Communities
- Local Government Wildfire Mitigation & Disaster Plan
- Local Government Flood Mitigation & Disaster Plan
- Local Government Tornado Mitigation & Disaster Plan
- How to Form a Community Emergency Response Team
- Florida House Bills 667 and 1059: Latest Permit and Inspection Laws
- NJ Electronic Construction Permit Law: What it Means for Local Governments
- Pedestrian Zones & Bike Lanes: Improving City's Car Free Zones
Local Government Information Technology - FAQs
How Does Government IT Software Help the IT Department?
IT software is designed to automate IT ticketing as a means to improve organization and IT department workflows. Tech issues are reported in one simplified ticketing platform that timestamps projects and ensures that tasks don’t slip through the cracks.
For IT department workers, that means less time can be spent on the mindless organization of IT tickets, and instead can focus on getting problems solved.
How Does Government Management Software Across Departments Benefit Your IT Team & Strategy?
A great IT strategy needs to consider the latest trends in government technology. In embracing government management software, the IT team can rest assured that cloud-based systems will keep their data safe from ransomware attacks and secure with automated back-ups.
As for the other government departments, mindless administrative tasks can be automated and communications can be streamlined
How to Implement a Modern Government IT Strategy?
A great IT strategy includes processes for installing and maintaining computer servers, regularly embracing the latest and greatest government technology, and actively taking steps to prevent ransomware attacks from hackers.
What is an IT Ticketing System?
An IT ticketing system for the government receives and organizes technology issue reports from other governmental departments. With one streamlined platform, the IT team can easily access relevant tickets and update the status of a ticket directly in the module.