Three essential steps to make your agency more innovative

This content is provided by SAIC.

Like “quality,” “disruption” and “paradigm shift” in the past, the word “innovation” is becoming overused to the extent that it’s in danger of losing its meaning—and its relevance. Where “innovation” used to refer to a leap forward or a true breakthrough, it’s often used now to describe any slight enhancement in product or service features.

Still, in a world filled with rapidly-evolving threats and opportunities, it’s crucial for a “breakthrough mindset” to be part of an organization’s operating stance. For agencies across the government, including the Department of Defense, remaining nimble and competitive is essential.

The push to cloud modernization is transforming how agencies will operate long-term, with the ability to adapt to fast-changing situations. For many agencies, a multi-cloud or hybrid cloud approach offers the right combination of capability, reliability, accessibility, and security. The cloud also ensures that technology won’t put limits on creativity as new capabilities are needed.

Innovate Forward and Never Look Back

How can agencies position themselves to be innovative when priorities are shifting and technology is constantly changing? These three steps can set your agency up for success:

  1. Establish a continuous modernization posture. Mission requirements evolve, so your technical infrastructure needs to be flexible to meet new challenges. The DoD’s Digital Modernization Strategy enables ongoing technology change in four key areas: innovation, optimization, resilient security, and talent. To get there, DoD is taking an enterprise approach to technology, so that common elements can be shared. Plus, being metrics-driven, the military can measure success and realign resources to stay on the path to modernization.
  2. Minimize technical debt. Adopting short term fixes may solve a problem today, but can set your agency up for higher costs—and more roadblocks—down the line. Taking a macro view of your hybrid-, single- or multi-cloud environment can give you the insights to know where the obstacles are, and where you can optimize systems and software to enable faster responses. As legacy systems migrate to cloud-based solutions, DevOps and DevSecOps can give your agency the ability to adjust quickly to new risks and broader opportunities.
  3. Embrace the future. This is easy to say, but much harder to accomplish. Organizational culture, looming deadlines, and conflicting priorities can make it difficult to keep the long view in mind. Modernization is key; a cloud foundation operates at the speed of technology change and enables you to apply and tailor new solutions as they are created—and scale your capabilities on demand. New capabilities using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will allow you to deliver mission-critical services faster and more accurately than ever, while freeing people to make better-informed decisions. To prepare your agency for what’s on the horizon, ensure you’re always ready to embrace innovation, wherever it comes from.

Make Innovation Part of Your Agency’s DNA

True innovation is happening throughout the government, from shared data solutions that provide real-time situational awareness at the edge to AI-powered, public-facing websites that enable ecommerce-like self-service for better user experiences. Incremental changes you make today—with a cloud strategy at the center—can create a platform that lets you take advantage of opportunities to innovate.

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