By Rob Starr, Big4.com Content Manager
Social, mobile, analytics, cloud (SMAC) and other technologies are the drivers behind the breakneck evolution of digital businesses and governments and the corresponding important implications for federal IT. Tom Greiner, who leads Accenture Federal Services Technology business took a few moments to expand on some of the salient points from his company’s Accenture Technology Vision 2015 report that identifies five emerging trends harnessing SMAC and the shift from a “me” to the “we” economy.
- Can you define the shift from the me to the we economy and the implications for federal IT?
It’s not just about you — or me, or anyone else in particular. It’s about all of us — The “We Economy”. Each of the trends identified in this year’s Tech Vision contribute to the We Economy. Underpinning the we’ve discussed here, the “We Economy” will require a much different approach to building applications—one that is liquid, intelligent, and connected. Future applications need to be more nimble. Agencies that begin their reinvention now will benefit from applications that can adapt to the pace of business.
- What’s the significance/connection with the Accenture Technology Vision 2015?
It’s the same vision across all of Accenture. We wanted to help make these visions more relevant and practical for our federal clients, to help illustrate how these trends can work at federal agencies.
- Can you define the Internet of Me and why it’s important?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is becoming a force that is driving new innovation and new opportunities by bringing every object, consumer, and activity into the digital realm. At the same time, government agencies are working to make similar changes within their enterprises by
digitizing employee, process, product, and service. As everyday objects are going online, so too are experiences—creating an abundance of digital channels that reach deep into every aspect of our lives. Forward-thinking agencies are looking to change the way they build applications and citizen services by creating highly personalized experiences that engage citizens, without breaching citizen trust.
- What about The Outcome Economy and Platform (R)evolution?
With the advent of Platform as a Service (PaaS, we are seeing agencies solve in weeks, problems they had spent years trying to solve through traditional means. For instance, the Dept of State struggled for two years to build a custom solution to manage service requests from its embassy-based employees and family members, having spent $10M+ across two different platforms and not fielding a system that worked. This past year, they used a PaaS solution (ServiceNow) and agile development techniques to create a single portal through which to capture 75 request types (“my air conditioner broke”, “I need secure transport to the airport”, “I need to change my HR status”, etc…) in just 8 weeks and for ~$400K at the Costa Rican embassy. The second embassy used this start point, added/deleted service request types and fielded their system in just two weeks at <$100K. This solution is now being rolled out across the remaining embassies.
- What can you say about the importance of the other trends mentioned?
We see emerging demands from both citizens who increasingly engage with Government through digital channels and the Government’s own employee base helping drive the adoption of technologies that better anticipate user needs, are better connected, are more agile, and are increasingly responsive. Future applications need to be more nimble. Agencies that begin their reinvention now will be able to adapt more quickly to the pace of change, manage rising complexity and open doors to more interconnected business environments