Executive Insights • 9 Min Read • December 6, 2023

The Importance of Government Agency Modernization: A Conversation



The modernization of government agencies’ technology systems and platforms stands at a pivotal and timely point. As citizens increasingly rely on digital platforms for services, and global challenges demand agile and efficient responses, it’s imperative for government agencies to embrace the modernization efforts needed. Today we dive into a Q&A with SkillStorm’s Dave Donelan and Imad Anabtawi to look at the intricacies of a government agency tech modernization. From the capabilities required to the cost and benefit implications, let’s unravel a few key important takeaways from the benefits, challenges, and the impacts it can have:  


1. What technical capabilities would an implementation team need to successfully deliver an enterprise case management system?  


Imad: An enterprise case management system will combine human actions with digital automations. In Case Management, you visualize your business process by including people, data, and actions. It requires capabilities in data management, integration, data modeling and automation.  

Dave: Also, depending on the nature of the project, a case management implementation team will need to know the primary software being deployed, the accompanying database(s) and any other applications involved. They will typically interview the users to map out the detailed processes, content and any adjudicators involved in the case management project. This will help them automate as many processes as possible to drive efficiencies while maintaining the integrity of the data. They will need resources who are skilled in application development, data integration, workflow management and more!  


2. What challenges might a government agency face when taking on a large modernization transformation like replacing a legacy system? 


Dave: Large digital transformation projects inevitably involve legacy application modernization and the integration of various technologies, processes, and strategies, which can be complex and challenging to implement and manage.  

There may be organizational resistance from employees who are accustomed to traditional ways of working, making it difficult to embrace modern technologies and accompanying processes. Outdated infrastructure and systems can drive up the cost and hinder the adoption of the new digital solutions. There is also often a shortage of skilled professionals with the expertise to drive digital transformation and embrace the newer technologies. 

Imad: To add to Dave’s point, another problem in legacy application modernization is how to modernize without disrupting the business. While modernizing your existing system can bring countless advantages and improve user experience, there are also a few difficulties of legacy system upgrading. Some of the challenges to think about when upgrading from a legacy application are. 

  • User Acceptance  
  • Seamless integration of new applications and technologies  
  • Data Loss 
  • Workflow Issues 
  • Cost 


3. What value does replacing a legacy system bring to the agency in its modernization efforts?  


Dave: As painful and costly as some digital modernization efforts can be, they are necessary to help agencies become more effective and efficient with their missions and constituents. Often, the cost of maintaining an outdated legacy system far outweighs the cost and benefit of implementing a newer more efficient system.

For example, in the DoD and US military branches, using older legacy systems has the potential to place an agency at risk with an adversary in warfare and military operations who may be using more modern technology and systems. 

Imad: How I’d sum it up, the benefits of replacing a legacy system are significant, including improved scalability, better user experience, flexibility, efficiency, and competitive advantage.   


4. By modernizing the digital landscape, what will the impact be in the long-term for a government agency? What limitations does this remove for them? 

Imad: Modernizing its digital landscape will help the agency to operate more efficiently and it’ll provide additional benefits such as: 

  • Reduced operational costs.  
  • Enhanced performance and agility. 
  • Boosted efficiency and innovation. 
  • Improved customer satisfaction.  

Dave: To add to Imad’s point on efficiency, the modernization would help communication to be more effective within its agency and with other agencies.  


5. What would an agency need to consider maintaining a new system moving forward? 


Dave: To maintain a new system, an agency needs to look at several factors: 

  • The cost of implementing the new system. 
  • The longevity of the software and solution.  
  • The REAL timeline required for full adoption. 
  • The effort required to train new and existing employees on the systems. 
  • The measurable cost and benefits from adopting the new system and the overall impact that it will have on the agency. 


If you’re interested in continuing the conversation with Dave and Imad, reach out or check out Tech Force by Design on our website!  

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