PORTLAND, OR – September 29, 2021: A just released national survey of over 100 local government personnel found that the CARES Act and American Rescue Plan monies enabled nearly 60% of responding municipalities to consider pushing technology modernization plans forward. The modernization cited in the survey focused specifically on technologies utilized for municipal operations and citizen interactions.
Municipalities were sampled nationwide with 56% having populations of 1000 or less, 30% 1000-20,000 and 10% 20-50,000. The survey was conducted by Springbrook, a leading software company producing cloud-based ERP platforms specifically for local government agencies.
Agencies identified several areas of importance to be facilitated by a technology modernization program including managing a remote workforce (26%), cybersecurity (24%), remote citizen access (24%), and a cloud-based ERP system (15%). These findings mirror the issues that drive many municipalities to seek new or upgrade existing technologies.
“The pandemic changed the way states and municipalities do business, creating a demand for a hybrid workforce and citizens being enabled to do their business in a contactless environment. That’s a very large impact. Remote citizen access and remote workforces are biggies. Software security is at the front end of all these installations,” observed Bob Wooley, former Chief Technical Architect for the State of Utah and currently a Senior Fellow for the Center for Digital Government, in a recent Springbrook on demand webinar: The state of relief funding.
“Today there’s a lot more pressure put on local government agencies to keep their cyber hygiene in place,” observed Joe Morris, Deputy Chief Innovation Officer e.Republic in a recent Springbrook Research Institute interview on federal relief funding.
45% of respondents reported that modernization would not have been considered prior to the release of these funds, with 50% stating that they would be utilizing the funds to add capabilities to existing systems.
“Local governments were the last to allow for large scale work from home scenarios. One of the impediments was clearly that the IT systems to support this weren’t in place. Overnight the problem had to be solved. This is being remediated by making investments in ERP systems that enable this. We are seeing that state and local government is being fast forwarded from the 1990’s into the 21st century,” said Dr. Justin Marlowe, Research Professor in the University of Chicago, Harris School of Public Policy, in a recent Springbrook Research Institute interview.
Additionally, the survey addressed federal guidance on funding, difficulty in receiving funding, citizen perceptions of modernization plans and citizen/municipality relationships.