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Enabling a Digital-forward Government | Key Takeaways from the Digital Transformation Summit 2018

Digital transformation in the 21st century demands leaps of rapid innovation. Federal agencies, though, are not famous for speed. Their legacy systems represent huge investments and are vulnerable to emerging security threats. Future-proofing government infrastructure requires agile development processes to create progressive, sustainable delivery models. Senior officials from Federal agencies and technology companies gathered at the Dell Digital Transformation Summit to discuss how agencies can evolve to better serve their customers, meet their mission goals, and succeed in the connected future. Here are a few highlights from the summit: Creating a NextGen Cyber Workforce and an upcoming hiring regulation Disruptive Technologies Digital Intelligence Cloud Smart Data Analytics AI + VR Col. Chris Wade, Director, Task Force Cyber Strong, G-3/5/7, U.S. Army says the Army is training young talent to...

Are You Afraid of Accountability?

If you want to be an effective leader, there is one word that will make or break your leadership: Accountability. An accountable style of leadership doesn’t come easily. Many people in leadership are afraid of it. How about you? Accountability means you have to be willing to hear the truth and give it. This takes courage and a willingness to be transparent. Leaders may talk about accountable leadership but fall short of implementing it. You have the opportunity to make it work. If you are willing to build your leadership around accountability, you will be amazed at the transformation all around you. Here are four basic keys to accountable leadership.   1. Be Fully Engaged  Maybe there was a time when leaders could separate...

From innovation to Innovation – 10 rules to go beyond the buzz

To innovate can be defined as “The action or process of innovating. Creating a new method, product, or idea.” It is certainly the buzzword of the moment in business, governance bodies, and institutions worldwide. But what does it mean in practice, really; beyond just the next incarnation of tired terms like value, intelligence, design, or dare I say, ‘digital’? Organizations are now trying to turn innovation into Innovation, a special-noun function of their business, as much as say Accounts Payable or Online Sales. This doesn’t feel altogether right. It is what the definition states, but also it implies a new way of thinking and working – a step-change aside from the norm to create something bigger, better, more effective in an order...

The Role of the Product Owner in Scrum

Shot of colleagues having a brainstorming session with sticky notes at work The concept of a Product Owner in Scrum evolved from the Chief Engineer role pioneered by Toyota in the car manufacturing industry. By crossing from manufacturing into software delivery, it is now a formative component of Scrum and one of three defined roles in the framework. Considering the importance of this role, a frequently asked question in Agile 101 sessions is what does a Product Owner do and what challenges exist when establishing the role? This article sets out to answer these questions. We can begin by listing some of the key responsibilities for a Product Owner: Set the product vision, and with support from the entire scrum...

Our Agile Values

At Viderity, we are big fans of Agile ways of working. There are various methods branded “Agile,” with Scrum™ being the most well-known, although people sometimes incorrectly conflate Agile and Scrum. However, Agile is not a method. Rather, it is a set of principles stated in the Agile Manifesto, and a resultant way of thinking about how best to develop software. A given method can be more or less adherent to these principles, and so be more or less “agile”.   The awkward truths of software development At its heart, Agile is about acknowledging and addressing some awkward truths about most, if not all, software development activity: Requirements change We often assume that with enough up-front analysis, solution requirements can be fully described and...

2018 Digital Trends Impacting Government

Technology is constantly changing as new tools are developed and old tools are modified or repurposed, and these commercial innovations are having a growing impact on how we govern. What citizens come to expect from the government is evolving as these new advanced tools mesh with their daily lives. This is requiring government organizations to not only understand these new tools, but to know when and how best to implement them to further their mission. Going forward, let’s explore four technology trends that are currently impacting citizen engagement and digital communications, including live video, immersive tools, bots, and wearables.   Trend 1: Live video Live video is a teenager in Internet years, but with Facebook launching their live video product in 2016, there...

The Keys to Driving Successful Digital Transformation

The terms “Digital Workplace” and “Digital Transformation” swirl so prominently in the corporate air these days that it is hard to go a day without hearing them, if not inhaling them. In a recent study conducted by IDG Research for Unisys, nearly two-thirds (65%) of respondents stated that it is “highly important” for their organizations to implement digital business over the next 12 months by substantially modifying their technology as well as their IT processes and resources. The survey identified five key priority areas: mobile application development, cloud deployment, social media, data science, and security. Digital business transformation requires an experimental mindset that is inclusive of the entire business—marketing, sales, services, IT, R&D, and customer and partner communities. Unfortunately, many...

Product Management Is Really Innovation Management

What is innovation? Innovation is not new. Humans are creative by nature. Innovation is written into our DNA. We have our wits, not our strength or speed, to thank for the fact that we didn’t end up as just so much smooth-skinned lion food thousands of years ago. When faced with challenges, we conceive innovative solutions that change the way we live our lives. Driven by humanity’s intense need communicate, our ancestors innovated from pictures painted on cave walls to spoken language, then to written language, then from handwritten books to the printing press and newspapers, and on to radio and TV. The spiral of innovation has continued into the Internet age with the creation of electronic books, social media,...

Beyond Twitter and Facebook: Other Social Media Platforms Organizations Can Use to Reach Customers

Social media strategies are more important than ever!  Beyond Facebook and Twitter, other platforms may be quite valuable in connecting with customers. Here are a few well worth considering: ▪  Instagram is a mobile photo & video-sharing service. Users take images or videos, apply digital filters, and share them on the application itself (and on a wide variety of social networking services). Although Instagram does not allow images and videos to have alternative text, users should provide a detailed caption explaining the image. Use Camel Case for multiple words within a hashtag. ▪  Yelp traditionally showcases crowd-sourced reviews of local businesses. However, as announced this month, GSA is encouraging agencies to launch their own Yelp pages in order to attain public feedback on their...

Digital Marketing Tools to Reach and Retain Clients

Diverse People Connecting With Social Media Who doesn’t want to create and nurture new customer relationships? In welcoming these critical connections, digital marketing tools can help your team with focus and organization, division of labor, scheduling, and task automation. Below, you will find a list of great tools. Happily, many of them are either free or very inexpensive. Just one more plus on the path to customer integration. Tools to Help Publish Content To be successfully “found” by customers, great relationship development and a stellar reputation are critical. In addition, there’s no denying that written content can help, especially when published in the form of a blog. There are many tools to help you do just that. Here are some that we recommend: WordPress:...