Delaware CIO Collins hosted an Information Technology Centralization (ITC) Town Hall event on November 4th for our upcoming ITC partners, and discussed the upcoming Information Technology Centralization initiative.
Information about the IT Assessment process is in the Delaware Enterprise Information Technology Centralization Playbook.
Have an ITC question not answered below? Email the project mailbox, DTI_IT_Centralization@delaware.gov.
Who gave authority to centralize IT?
The Legislature. The Government Efficiency and Accountability Review (GEAR) Board’s focus area on IT Efficiency reviewed the incomplete IT centralization effort. GEAR recommended the legislature pass Senate Bill 153 which modernizes DTI’s enabling statue (Title 29 Ch 90C). It authorizes the establishment of a shared IT service model for Executive Branch state agencies.
How does this legislation-backed IT Centralization effort differ from the Executive Orders of the past?
For a history of IT Centralization efforts, please refer to https://dti.delaware.gov/digital-innovation/itc/.
How is this ITC different from past state IT consolidation efforts?
Almost two decades ago, the State transitioned from an Office of Information Services to a newly-formed Department of Technology and Information. This was accomplished before the State had dedicated Organizational Change Management resources. This is not the case in 2019. DTI has made a considerable investment in understanding impact change has on people and processes and how to help mitigate and manage the effects of change. Great effort is being made to provide support for a much smoother transition for staff impacted by IT Centralization.
Is the TIC coming back?
Title 29 reconstitutes the Technology Investment Council (TIC). Started with good intent, it had devolved over time to little more than a “technology conversation” body. IT Centralization requires enterprise-level governance and decision-making authority to work. The new TIC involves leadership from more agency partners, intended to raise the level of dialog and decision-making to drive citizen services at the level citizens expect and deserve. This new TIC will:
The TIC will apply COBIT framework for governance. (COBIT stands for Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology. It is a framework created by the ISACA (Information Systems Audit and Control Association) for IT governance and management. It was designed to be a supportive tool for managers—and allows bridging the crucial gap between technical issues, business risks, and control requirements. COBIT is a thoroughly recognized guideline that can be applied to any organization in any industry. Overall, COBIT ensures quality, control, and reliability of information systems in an organization, which is also the most important aspect of every modern business.)
Is Delaware a flagship state for IT Centralization?
No. According to NASCIO, most states have centralized IT infrastructure (and workforce) or are doing so now. In fact, Delaware has consulted with both Tennessee and Kansas to gain insight into their methodology and lessons learned, and Oklahoma has also shared information on their journey.
Who is responsible for planning and execution of IT centralization activities?
Multiple parties have been involved in the planning process. They include GEAR leadership, DTI leadership, outside experts in IT consolidation, as well as resources from the Department of Human Resources (DHR), and Office of Management and Budget (OMB). A key part of IT Centralization will be the IT Governance body (a re-tooled Technology Investment Council), the expanded leadership of which will include cabinet-level representation from across the enterprise and the internal DTI resource team who will be assessing agency IT functions and making recommendations for success.
Will communication increase on the IT Centralization moving forward?”
An IT Centralization Project Team guides the DTI’s transformation under IT Centralization. It includes a DTI Organizational Change Management (OCM) component. The ITC and OCM teams will continue to do the following:
Will I have an opportunity to participate and provide feedback on the IT Centralization?
Yes. Refer any questions you are unable to answer or any concerns to the project mailbox, DTI_IT_Centralization@delaware.gov.
What services will be offered by DTI post-centralization?
We are working with Excipio to draft a new shared services catalog and chargeback model. More information will be available in September.
Explain what is meant by Shared Service and Chargeback Model.
Shared Services Definition:
A shared service is a collaborative strategy in which a subset of existing business functions are concentrated into a new, semi-autonomous business unit that has a management structure designed to promote efficiency, value generation, cost savings and improved service for internal customers of the parent organization, like a business competing in the open market” (Bergeron, 2003).
Delaware’s IT shared service model consists of the following:
The chargeback model consists of the following:
What is a “brokered service”? How does it apply to IT Centralization?
A “brokered service” is one that is contracted for and managed by DTI on behalf of all, usually identified by the enterprise as a service that is applicable and desirable to multiple agencies across the enterprise. For Delaware to achieve economies of scale in contracting for such services, a single contract, negotiated, monitored, and managed by DTI on behalf of all, is desirable. As an example, DTI anticipates brokering services such as Device-as-a-Service that will help Delaware achieve more efficient, equitable use of resources to provide state-of-the-art desktop computing equipment and peripherals in a more cost-effective and timely manner, through contracting with a reliable, experienced outside partner vendor.
What benefit does X-as-a-shared-service offerings provide to DTI? State agencies?
Selected benefits include:
Will the new shared services model change how the State provides Data Center and Mainframe services?
The State of Delaware IT is shifting from a capital expenditure basis, in which the state owns equipment and refreshes it periodically, to an operating expense basis (brokered “X-as-a-Service” offerings). This paradigm shift will affect all kinds of IT services and assets eventually. The State anticipates a gradual move to “Data Center-as-a-Service” and, possibly, “Mainframe-as-a-Service”, as equipment is lifecycled and/or as other needs and opportunities arise. Agencies’ future data center and mainframe needs would be fulfilled through brokered vendor agreements, allowing greater flexibility to scale services to meet ever- and rapidly-changing needs.
Is a Data Warehouse part of the modernization strategy?
DTI would potentially serve as the steward for, or broker, data warehouses in partnership with State agencies.
Is there a process behind keeping the chargeback model and the service catalog current/updated? When a rate changes, how does that work its way into the chargeback model?
The new Technology Investment Council (TIC) will own the decision to add new services and to set and adjust costs. The TIC has representation from OMB, Controller General, agency leadership; subcommittees (e.g., finance group) report to quarterly TIC and TIC decisions will be rolled into budget process. The committee will base decisions on application costs trajectory to capture chargeback per application in addition to other technology related expenses.
Will there be a change in service delivery?
Service delivery will continue to be governed by Service Level Agreements that reference a new chargeback model that is tied to the state’s IT service catalog. The revision of the catalog of services offered and the chargeback rates are still being determined in conjunction with OMB and others. Service Level Agreements will be updated to reflect the new catalog and chargeback model, either as they expire and/or as each agency is centralized.
Why centralize all Executive Branch IT?
Centralization gives the Department of Information Technology (DTI) the ability to do the following:
Are any State government branches excluded from the IT centralization?
The legislation mandates all Executive Branch agencies will be centralized. For the list of agencies below, DTI will only focus on the core services (network, email, hosting and mainframe) in the immediate future. These organizations may opt into centralized services.
Are all IT staff and assets being centralized?
The model centralizes the following duties and related personnel:
What method will be used to centralize IT staff and assets?
DTI will leverage to ITC Playbook to coordinate assessments of each agency. DTI and agency leadership will use the assessment results to design a plan for IT assets and resources. This assessment process includes the expectation every agency employee with an IT role and/or responsibility will complete a skillset survey, with the employee’s manager validating the skillsets identified. DTI internal team leads review survey results to determine where the employee fits in the DTI organization and the support model outlined for that agency. A discussion occurs with each employee to ensure understanding.
Will agencies that are ITC’d (or partially—e.g., missing a division) be impacted by the new service and chargeback model?
Yes, the goal is to standardize the service offering and SLAs with all Executive Branch agencies.
What is the plan to transition technical work from the agency to the centralized model?
IT centralization may provide for technical work to be accomplished in a different manner than before. The answer to this question will necessarily vary based on individual agency technical work needs, existing staff models, and what the IT centralization assessment process reveals.
How will in-progress work and projects be addressed during centralization?
The answer will vary according to what the IT centralization assessment process reveals, how an agency currently manages its IT projects, and how that compares with DTI’s standards and best practices.
Can an agency be assured that the programs and the citizens served will be provided the same, or better, level of service?
The aim of IT centralization is to provide the kind of digital government services citizens expect and deserve, in the most efficient and consistent manner possible with the resources the state has available. IT centralization offers the greatest chance for Delaware to modernize and evolve its IT infrastructure and resources in a way that best supports agency business needs to meet citizen expectations now and into the future.
I work in an Executive Branch agency, but I don’t believe my job has much to do with/is affected by information technology. Will IT centralization have any impact my work?
Some of the ways IT centralization may affect your work:
When will the reallocation of IT staff occur?
The transformation team is currently in the planning phase. Implementation plans are currently being drafted for Q4 2019 starting with the centralization assessment of DHR and OMB.
Will my (IT-related) position be reclassified and/or reallocated?
Assessments of each agency’s IT resources, assets, and processes will begin in late 2019 and continue into 2020. It is too early to say exactly what will happen to everyone’s position. Whether or not a position changes will depend on a number of factors (an individual’s knowledge, skills, abilities, and interests; agency business needs that the individual’s job supports, etc.).
Will IT Centralization result in a reduction in force (RIF)?
No, and no employee will see a decrease in salary. It is anticipated that a reduction in some workstreams will occur through attrition while augmenting staff in other areas through retraining and new hires.
Will DTI be working with the State of Delaware to offer ‘retirement incentives’ in connection with IT Centralization and staff reallocation?
The State of Delaware has no plan to offer “buy-outs” or other ‘retirement incentives’ as the State anticipates continuing to need more IT workers than it is able to hire and retain.
How will agency staff be evaluated?
The DTI ITC Playbook will be executed with all in-scope agencies. This includes a skill-set survey which is used to assess each employee’s strengths and interests to factor into determining the appropriate placement in a suitable DTI team.
Who performs the agency staff evaluation?
Organizational Change Management (OCM) staff may follow up on an employee’s skills survey with a face-to-face, confidential discussion. The skills assessment and the discussion are summarized and presented to the project team to use in mapping an employee to a DTI position.
Will reallocated staff report to a DTI supervisor/manager?
We anticipate centralized staff will find a home on a DTI team under a DTI manager. Some workers may continue to report to their same immediate supervisor who, in turn may report to a DTI manager. Not all changes will be immediate, as DTI’s organization anticipates changes from IT workforce modernization, which is a project that is running concurrently with IT centralization.
What is IT Workforce Modernization and how does it impact ITC?
The State of Delaware’s IT job classifications are undergoing modernization. This is a joint DTI/DHR effort to assure that DTI is positioned to be able to offer competitive salaries (generally higher than State Merit) and benefits to attract high quality job applicants. The IT Workforce Modernization project is running concurrently with IT Centralization and it will eventually affect most DTI employees, including already-, newly-, or to-be-centralized ones.
Will reallocated staff be given a DTI job title and pay scale?
As mentioned above, it is anticipated that agency IT positions will be mapped to DTI positions; however, as the IT workforce modernization project is still under development, some questions remain unanswered. It is anticipated that staff may choose between retaining Merit status or having their position mapped into a DTI position. Employees will not lose salary in transition.
Will all employees have to transition from Merit to Exempt?
No. Reallocations will depend on the results of individual agency assessments and will not begin until after an agency assessment is done. Also, plans are still pending approval by OMB/DHR, but we anticipate that IT classified Merit positions will be offered a window (possibly 6 months) to “opt in” to a mapped DTI position with salary adjustment. Employees who do not wish to “opt in” during the six-month window will remain Merit, at their existing salary.
Will my agency’s casual/seasonal position(s) be reclassified or reallocated?
Assessments of each agency’s IT resources, assets, and processes will begin in late 2019 and continue into 2020. It is too early to say exactly what will happen to individual position. Whether or not a position changes will depend on many factors (an individual’s knowledge, skills, abilities, and interests; agency business needs that the individual’s job supports, etc.). Depending on the results of the assessment, these positions may be reallocated. The cap on casual/seasonal of 29.5 hours/week would apply at DTI as it does within the Merit system; an exemption is required for a greater number of work hours.
Are benefits for DTI employees the same or different than those for State Merit employees?
DTI new hires accrue 13.25 hours/mo. of annual leave (as opposed to State of Delaware employees who must have at least 15 years before reaching this rate of accrual). Most benefits are comparable. DTI employees participate in the same State of Delaware Pension plan, same health insurance, same flexible spending, same other optional insurance coverages). A Merit employee’s years of service transfer to DTI.
How will retaining Merit status affect career advancement?
We anticipate that employees choosing to retain Merit status will have no change in salary or job title. To advance at DTI, an employee would need to “opt in” to a DTI position.
My skillset may be outdated; how will I fit in at DTI?
During the assessment and one-on-one discussion regarding staff transition, you will have an opportunity to identify your interests, along with your knowledge, skills, and abilities. DTI is committed to supporting any individual in obtaining desired training that supports our mission and our agency partners’ needs. DTI also will have “associate level” positions in many service areas that do not have the same high bar for education, training, and certification, allowing staff a path into their preferred work interest area.
Will I lose responsibilities to more knowledgeable/skilled DTI employees once my agency is centralized?
A: Every effort will be made to assure that the assessment process captures an employee’s desires and work aspirations. DTI believes that, whenever possible, we all benefit when we can do the work that we are interested in and enjoy. We thrive when we can make the best use of our knowledge and skills.
Will reallocated staff receive training related to DTI technology and methodology?
DTI anticipates an onboarding process that includes training needed for centralized staff to accomplish new roles. The new chargeback model and the requirement that IT savings be reinvested into IT will help enable the state to fund training and development activities to ensure DTI staff have opportunities to acquire the new skills the state requires.
Will I be fired if my position is reallocated and I can’t learn quickly enough?
A: No. Though exempt DTI employment is “at will” (just like most private sector jobs), DTI has processes in place that look a lot like the Merit system. Interim and Annual Performance Reviews form the basis for managers and employees to agree on goals and objectives. When an employee and manager find that there are challenges, options include developing a Performance Improvement Plan to lay out expectations. DTI also looks for alternative placements for an otherwise satisfactory employee where that person might have more performance success.
Will DTI be re-organizing or realigning DTI resources?
Yes, but not on a large scale. A new Chief of Agency Partner Services will oversee direct customer-facing services and will be responsible for relationship management with agency partners. Staff members providing these services will be realigned. In addition, some small adjustments are being considered. DTI will solidify the target organization model in partnership with the Department of Human Resources.
What is the timing for reorganization of DTI?
DTI’s workforce modernization may have to be coordinated with DHR’s larger workforce modernization effort. DTI has an immediate need for DHR to reclassify existing DTI vacancies to fill gaps.
As DTI teams grow across agencies, how will DTI ensure all teams are applying the same standards?
Lifecycle consistency is extremely important to develop. DTI requires all staff to work within our standards and policies. If new or improved standards are required, the Governance groups will develop, approve, and enforce the standards.
Will current ITC’d agencies’ DTI employees have first opportunity to transition from Merit to Exempt?
Yes. The Chief of Administration will work with DHR to address this existing gap.
Will there be promotion opportunities within DTI given the current salary caps and available positions?
Yes. The IT Workforce Modernization initiative will create new position profiles that include a growth track in all disciplines. Growth tracks begin with an Associate-level position. Our vision includes a “DTI University” which provides staff with the opportunity to develop the skills needed for promotional opportunities.
How are contractor positions being handled?
There is currently a lack of resources and available full-time positions. DTI may carry fewer contractors if more full-time positions are made available to our organization in the future. Contractors will continue to be utilized strategically for specialized skillsets.
How will reallocation affect an employee’s work location?
At this time, prior to completing agency assessments, it has not yet been determined exactly how reallocation of staff resources will affect any individual. Many staff may not experience much change in where they perform their work, or their duties, but may have changes in their work processes. They may or may not have a change in by whom/how their work is managed. However, it is also likely that for many, the shift from being agency-based to DTI-workstream-based may offer some individuals opportunities they may not have had in terms of work location and advancement opportunities. Work locations are arranged by mutual agreement between the employee and DTI, based on DTI and/or agency business needs. DTI expects to continue prioritizing embedding employees within their assigned agency.
What does “Northern location” mean? Would the location be within the city of Wilmington?
A northern location is essential to providing fast and efficient service to our agencies. A site outside of the City of Wilmington is currently being considered. DTI will continue to support telecommute options as well as prioritize embedding employees within their assigned state agency.
Is the iTIC (Internal Technology Investment Council) coming back?
The new TIC involves leadership from more agency partners, intended to raise the level of dialog and decision-making to drive citizen services at the level citizens expect and deserve. This new TIC also will allow delegation of work to sub-committees with assigned subject matter experts. (NOTE: this is likely where “iTIC-like” groups might evolve).
How will DTI manage resource allocation to IT Centralization while supporting the current book of work?
DTI wants to create an environment of accomplishment, not stress. We will establish an internal ITC to assist with execution of agency assessment results. We won’t be able to avoid resource conflicts completely, but will look to staff members to aid in the IT Centralization efforts. In addition, our vendor partner (Excipio), will complete much of the agency readiness assessments in advance of requiring DTI resource engagement.