Gov. Beshear Announces Three Smart Government Initiatives
IT Initiatives will save money and make service delivery more efficient
I am excited to share with you three new initiatives that Gov. Steve Beshear announced today. These three important information technology (IT) initiatives for the executive branch will bring savings to the commonwealth on many different levels. All three fall under the Smart Government Initiative launched in early 2010, which focused on reviewing five areas of state spending: IT, assets, transportation services, postal services and procurement services.
The enterprise-wide initiatives announced today are IT infrastructure consolidation, managed print services and an alternate data center. All three initiatives have been spearheaded by the Finance and Administration Cabinet in conjunction with state agencies. Already a team of dedicated professionals across several agencies has been working on a plan to move forward with more details forthcoming.
As Gov. Beshear reiterated to cabinet secretaries, “This central focus on infrastructure alignment will enable state government to save money and to provide business services in the most effective and efficient manner. We are all cognizant of decreasing revenues and the need for us to make smart decisions that will position the commonwealth to better serve our citizens.”
Savings from streamlining IT service delivery are estimated to yield annual net savings ranging from $16.7 to $27.8 million upon full implementation. Managed print services savings are estimated at $19 million over five years; while the alternate data center’s major contribution is risk reduction.
While monetary savings is important, these efforts will provide state government employees and agencies an environment better suited to capitalizing on new and emerging technologies. Following is a brief summary of each initiative:
IT Infrastructure Initiative
Over the last year, the Finance and Administration Cabinet worked closely with Pacific Technologies, Inc. (PTI). These consultants reviewed our use of technology resources and surveyed state agencies about their respective IT resources and management. These included application and hardware assets, support personnel, risk mitigation, energy consumption and building space. The report iterated that decentralized delivery of IT infrastructure services results in costly asset redundancy, exceeding best practice standards.
According to recommendations in the report, the following immediate actions will be taken to improve efficiency and service delivery of IT infrastructure services:
- Hire a new chief information officer and elevate the position to be a member of the Governor’s Executive Cabinet;
- Create a Technology Advisory Council to improve coordination, accountability and oversight of information technology across the executive branch;
- Consolidate IT infrastructure services under the chief information officer.
By implementing an enterprise-wide IT infrastructure plan, these actions will significantly reduce the Commonwealth’s risk of system failure, privacy or security breach. These changes also will position the Commonwealth to take advantage of emerging technologies and sourcing alternatives for IT services in the future.
Managed Print Services (MPS)
The Finance and Administration Cabinet is working with Xerox to implement an enterprise-wide audit and assessment of state government’s current print, copy and fax equipment. The goal is to optimize equipment to ensure the state has the right amount of print devices and that those devices are physically situated to satisfy business needs.
For the duration of the managed print services contract, the Commonwealth can update copiers, printers and fax machines with more efficient technology while reducing IT infrastructure costs and the Commonwealth’s carbon footprint.
While the first phases of managed print services will focus on the physicality of the print environment, future phases will look at cost savings associated with maximizing the use of electronic documents, records management/retention, electronic forms and database re-engineering.
Over the coming months, the MPS team will meet with each cabinet secretary, independent agency heads and senior decision-makers to discuss implementing the project within their respective cabinets/agencies.
Alternate Data Center
On September 20, the Commonwealth contracted with Cyrus One, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cincinnati Bell, to establish an Alternate Data Center. The Alternate Data Center (ADC) improves the Commonwealth Office of Technology’s ability to provide uninterrupted service in the event of a disaster or other interruption of services at the Commonwealth Data Center in Frankfort. The ADC will contain hardware and software to improve network and communication availability, as well as improve the availability of all systems managed by Commonwealth Office of Technology (COT). This fully secure data center ensures maximum uptime of all systems housed in the location.
The ADC, in essence, will allow the Commonwealth to continue business as usual even if the state’s technology infrastructure is affected in a disaster. This added security and the ability to provide enhanced services through emergency situations allows for peace of mind to COT’s customer agencies and to the citizens of Kentucky.
The IT infrastructure initiative, as well as the other two IT-related initiatives, will require cooperation, collaboration and communication among executive management and employees. We look forward to working with professionals across state government to reach the ultimate goal of better, safer and faster technology services in a cost effective manner.
Thank you for the important work you do for the Commonwealth.
Mary E. Lassiter
Secretary of the Executive Cabinet and
State Budget Director
702 Capitol Avenue
Room 284, Capitol Annex
Frankfort, KY 40601
Phone: (502) 564-7300
Fax: (502) 564-6684