Depending on where an agency sits within government, the difficulty of navigating a funding request through the procurement process ranges from moderately straightforward to extremely complex. And while budget constraints are a major factor in procurement difficulty, they certainly aren’t the only one. In cases where the procurement team deals with a wide range of request types, they may not understand the importance or urgency of software upgrades. A 2016 report that some government agencies are still running Windows 3.1 proves that some agencies are definitely way behind the times.
There are a few points that help to emphasize the importance of technology updates, tying the expenditure directly to better results on behalf of the taxpayer. Here are three high-impact factors when considering a technology update.
Efficiency – When software is installed, it is configured based on the agency’s current structure, processes and staffing. Unless it’s regularly updated, it becomes less aligned with the agency with every passing day. Hardware faces different challenges – it becomes less reliable, increasing the possibility of failure at very inconvenient times. Updating software and hardware does more than push efficiency rates forward; it also keeps them from sliding backwards.
Compatibility – As hardware and software grow older, they become harder to replace with similar products. Unfortunately, components are only designed to work with products built around the same time. This means that if technology sits too long without being updated, a single failure can render an agency’s entire technology stack unusable. This is too much risk for agencies as reliant on technology as investigators.
Security – Software security flaws are identified constantly – many of these flaws can leave a network susceptible to data theft or deletion. These flaws are identified and patches are offered by vendors for as long as the software is supported. Once that date passes, security flaws are unlikely to go patched. That’s what led to the massive Office of Personnel Management database hack in 2014. To retain data security, agencies housing sensitive data should not be running software if its security is no longer supported by the software’s vendor.
To learn more about how up-to-date case management software can improve your agency’s results, call us at 919-600-5102 or contact us at Team_WingSwept@WingSwept.com