Joe Morris here. Today, I’m diving into some of the market buzz that has kicked-off 2023.

As a bonus, I asked Teri Takai, Former California and Department of Defense CIO and current Vice President of the Center for Digital Government, three questions about the market. (You’ll definitely want to hear her responses!)

Quick reminder: I will give an in-depth outlook on trends and budget forecasts for 2023 during my session at Beyond the Beltway on February 23rd. Hope to see you there!

Gov Tech is Resilient

The gov tech market has proved its resiliency time and time again. If the Great Recession and the COVID-19 pandemic taught us anything about this market, it’s that government doesn’t stop spending. Government will double-down on mission-critical needs when times are tough.

Gov Tech companies are doubling down:

My team did research on the GovTech 100, companies that primarily sell to state and local government, to see how their businesses have been affected by the recent economic turmoil. (Drumroll please…)

  • Their average headcount is up 19% from Jan. 2022.
  • They are growing their companies (nearly 20%) to really go all-in on the opportunity in this market.

Deeper dive: Dustin Haisler and I released a video and deck that provides an in-depth update on the gov tech market and highlights what you should be doing now to succeed in 2023. Download the video and presentation here.

CIO Activity

Here are a few recently-announced state-level leadership changes:

  • Steve Hodges has been appointed CISO for Georgia.
  • Jennifer Ricker, CIO and secretary of Illinois’ Department of Innovation and Technology, is leaving her role.
  • Michael Leahy, CIO and secretary of Maryland’s IT Department, is stepping down.
  • Jason Snyder has been appointed CIO for Massachusetts, following the retirement of Curtis Wood.
  • Rob Main, North Carolina’s Chief Risk Officer, announced his retirement at the end of 2022.
  • Craig Felchle has officially taken over as Chief Technology Officer for North Dakota.
  • Jeff Maxon has been named interim Chief Information Technology Officer for Kansas.
  • Wyoming CIO Bill Vajda resigns after less than a year.
  • Katie Savage was appointed Maryland’s secretary of information technology.

With new leaders come new priorities and opportunities to create new relationships. Although CIOs are important, make sure you’re marketing and relationship-building efforts are focused on multiple points of influence in the buying process.

3 Questions with Teri Takai

What are we hearing from the CIO community on their outlook for 2023?

Teri: “CIOs want to work with partners that understand their business goals and their agency’s culture. As they look forward, here are five areas we have heard are their main priorities for this year:

  1. Attracting and retaining talent
  2. Cybersecurity
  3. Obtaining business relationship managers
  4. Enhancing project management (CIOs want to make sure money is spent effectively and is meeting business objectives.)
  5. Improving the procurement process (What does government need to understand about technology companies and vice versa?)

What are we continuing to hear from the vendor community?

Teri: “We are hearing a lot of conversations about procurement. Vendors are looking for purchasing and procurement vehicles to make it easier for companies to work with government.

  • The need for speed: old rules and regulations can make it difficult for tech partners to turn projects around quickly.
  • The need for partnership: CIOs are reaching out more than ever before to build partnerships with vendors they trust.”

What advice do you have for the IT community?

Teri: “Understand that you must develop your leadership team and your technology team. You need to be thinking ‘business first,’ which means you need to speak the language of the business and then, prioritize your technology solutions to meet those business needs.

  • Integrate digital equity into everything you do.
  • Make sure that all your solutions are considering data and digital privacy.
  • As you think about cybersecurity, make sure you are also thinking about risk management.

Lastly, as we hear talks of recession, it’s important we all stay positive. Government must have a partnership with their IT community to drive change when it comes to citizen services. There is an opportunity for IT professionals to really step up and take that responsibility to show how we can make changes in the business.”

That’s all for this month. Drop me a note with any questions. Hope to see you all at Beyond the Beltway on February 23rd!

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