By Charles T. Thompson, CIO, City of Houston
Charles leads Houston Information Technology Services (HITS) where IT Governance, Enhanced Service Delivery, the Building of Relationships/Partnerships and Operational Efficiency drive the team’s efforts. He has over 20 years of experience both in Public and Private sector.
What technology should stand for:
The process of capturing business requirements is called IT Continuous Planning. This is closely related with Budget Planning but comes up a little more frequently. The Business Relationship Manager or IT advocate, is responsible and accountable for advocating for the line of business they face.
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A Smart CIO will quickly realizes that they cannot respond to all needs without a process by which there is continuous planning, good IT governance, investments and an eye to delivery. Our enterprise data management solutions enable the use of key technologies such as business intelligence applications, data and location analytics, data warehouses and eventually big data.
For a long time the city has not been efficient in this, what with the 25 city departments and their unconnected way of having siloed repositories and strategies. Efforts to centralize the existing data are showing progress and will eventually drive down costs and improve operations. It can be noted that some of the data is repeated – separate silos always leads to that – such inefficiencies is what could be avoided with an integrated data platform. However, because of requirements for agility, performance, and workload management, these steps have to be scrutinized and made subject of detailed analysis at every phase parallel projects.
Where technology has not made it big in business
In the wake of the economic downturn we’ve come through just a few years back, it might be too ambitious to have a wish list. We will use operational efficiencies to fund innovation and investment. We are extremely fortunate in Houston to only have had a small dip in the economy; yet, there are investments that are required for operational aspects of serving the business and the public. We ask ourselves every day, how do we provide services that increase the productivity of our employees and enable the public to be served more efficiently?
The Technologies That Has Changed Enterprise Business Environment
The service need of the employees is what the priority is when end user based platforms are developed. The architecture will provide a foundational framework for services and improve operational efficiency, yet keep pace with the fast moving rate of change within emerging technologies. We then use that research and knowledge to develop strategies that the businesses can take advantage of to fulfill our objectives. We recognize the impact of these trends and realize that the public will force the strategies to the surface, or our customer’s customers will go around IT, so we try to be ahead of the demand so that we can be properly prepared before the technologies outpace us. Our focus on an ongoing basis is to understand the government value of social media, mobile, cloud and all other emerging technologies through research.
We ask ourselves every day, how do we provide services that increase the productivity of our employees and enable the public to be served?