Digital Transformation in Government: Incubating a Connected Community

Veeam's Nathan Steiner explores digital transformation in government and the the foundations of a smart city at CityDisrupt, Sydney.

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Digital transformation has driven a massive surge of organisations struggling to keep up with advancing technologies, particularly within government departments. However, Nathan Steiner, Head of Systems Engineering ANZ at Veeam Software, argues that we’ve always been adapting to this movement.

At OmniChannel Media’s latest installment of CityDisrupt, Sydney Steiner explored this concept and explained:

“We’re in a state of change. Digital disruption is impacting on all faces of business as well as government services. But haven’t we always been? We started with the desktop era and then the rapid transformation to the Cloud era.”

The difficulty in adapting to the latest phase of transformation, known as the ‘digital era’, arises from a lack of understanding of what this progression entails.

Mr Steiner explained the importance for organisations and government departments to develop with the transformation before it’s too late.

“Digital era means providing services that are software driven. We are starting to see now data be the source of competitive differentiation.”

Digital transformation is clearly in progress throughout both the public and private sectors, as research shows that by 2020 4-in-5 people will be consuming through digital means.

Due to the ever-increasing demand, smart cities need to be active and easily accessible to citizens at all times.

“But what happens when the light goes off?” Mr Steiner ponders.

Steiner suggests the importance of a constantly online smart city will be revealed when the city turns off due to a mishap in application processes.

Steiner labels this as the “cost of downtime” where every second without accessibility can affect the lives of millions, and therefore can create a huge loss.

Steiner’s work at Veeam ensures that the cost of downtime will be minimal if it happens at all.

“Veeam looks at a very infrastructure and data-centric view on making sure that availability can be provided in all of the core infrastructure components that applications, data and resources sit.”

Infrastructure is not enough. Steiner emphasises that education and knowledge is required for citizens and operators to create the best possible experience in a smart city.

“A key focus of being a smart city is that your citizens actually know how to harness what’s being delivered to them. But again in skills in terms of being able to manage and operate those environments.”