CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Department of Administration officials announced today that the West Virginia Office of Technology was selected as a finalist in the 2009 Recognition Awards for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Information Technology (IT) in State Government, sponsored by the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO). This year’s high quality of nominations show that states continue to innovate and achieve great results, despite the difficult economic climate, according to a prepared release by the NASCIO.
The Office of Technology is a finalist in the Enterprise IT Management Initiatives category, where it is being recognized for its information technology consolidation program.
Upon taking office, one of the primary goals of Gov. Joe Manchin III was to eliminate duplications, streamline business processes and reduce administrative operating costs. Technology was specifically an area of concern.
Prior to the Manchin administration, Information Technology costs and staffing levels were growing at a pace that could not be sustained. Additionally, executive branch departments were experiencing significant issues exchanging information due to the lack of IT standards.
To resolve the issue, West Virginia initiated a project to consolidate IT-related resources (people, hardware, software and services) into a newly formed organization, the Office of Technology. Since February of 2007, all executive branch classified civil service agencies have been consolidated except for one agency, which is scheduled for consolidation later this year.
“The results have been significant thus far,” said Kyle Schafer, Chief Technology Officer for the state of West Virginia. “When IT hardware, software and services associated with IT staffing are combined, West Virginia has achieved annual savings of approximately $12.9 million. Approximately $9.5 million of these savings return directly to the agencies supported by the Office of Technology, with the remaining $3.4 million being used to fund IT capital improvements. As standardization and centralization continue, the savings are expected to continue.”
The other two finalists in the Enterprise IT Management Initiatives category are the states of Pennsylvania and Texas. The award recipient will be announced at the State Dinner and Award Presentation at NASCIO’s Annual Conference on October 26, 2009, in Austin, Texas. This year marks the 21st year NASCIO has been recognizing IT projects in state govenments.