More than 300 attendees, from government and industry, joined us last week at the Newseum in D.C. to hear about current issues, trends and best practices to create the next generation of mobile government workforce. Topics around open data, security and IoT showcased how government agencies are using mobility to transform their mission.
Although the evolution of technology and mobile has transformed the industry, one thing will always be at the center of it all: Mission. It is the mission that drives agencies and the need to provide better services to citizens and government employees, at lower costs, which is causing every level of government to look for new solutions. We heard from multiple agencies and industry experts who all agreed that when it comes to building out your mobile strategy, you have to start with your users. It’s not about implementing technology for technology’s sake; it’s about enabling users to have access to the right information, at the right time, on any device, anywhere. It’s about saving lives, empowering citizens, and enabling a mobile workforce.
As Erie Meyer stated in her discussion, when developing a successful mobile strategy and roadmap you must begin with a problem statement and you must understand your users. Technology is only the vehicle to get you there. If you don’t know where your users need to go and why, technology can either impede their progress or enable it.
Steps for Success:
- A design-thinking, user-centered methodology is critical and shouldn’t be an afterthought. From the onset, security, open data, and user experience should be built into each step of your program. Begin with a pain point and look at the full end-to-end user experience.
- Start with a prototype. Test and learn before dumping time, resources and money into a full rollout. It should be an iterative process.
- Partner with a third-party to develop a mobile-first, open data initiative from the start.
- Continuously improve adoption at both the project level and organization level through agile methodologies, continuous monitoring and tracking.
In DMI’s panel discussion, led by Kathleen Urbine, on “How Can Mobility Transform your Agency?” the point was made that “innovation is hard in a regulated environment”. And although there is some truth to that, agencies can no longer ignore the rising expectations and missed opportunities to better serve our citizens. Despite what people say, the government has come a long way in the last 5 years and we now have all of the pieces in play to truly transform our industry. By following these practices, the government will only continue to improve, adapt and innovate. At the end of the day, people are still at our core; mission success is what matters and mobile technology is the promise to bring them both together.