Christopher Rein, CTO of New Jersey

New Jersey’s technology priorities heading into 2023 can be thought of as having two major components — resident experience improvement with digitization, and legacy technical debt reduction. For me personally, the focus is on 5 c’s that are heavily interrelated: collaboration, communication, commonality, consolidation and compliance.

In the past three years, many of our state agencies were faced with a massive spike in demand with the onset of the pandemic, and through the efforts of various teams across these agencies, capacity was added and many services were pushed online from prior being transacted on paper or requiring in-person contact. These were pockets of quick response — individual projects undertaken under often extreme circumstances to meet an immediate need. Heroes emerged and New Jersey owes a debt of gratitude to them.

But these implementations were often disparate. Different vendors — sometimes using a different web presence and different technologies — resulted in digital services that at times were disparate. A resident that wants to interact with digital New Jersey sees varying types of “look-and-feel” as well as multiple identity and credentialing presentations. Our efforts have begun to shift towards ensuring that each new system implemented or that undergoes a substantial upgrade or modernization, takes on a more common branding of New Jersey and operates on resilient and stable infrastructure.

Colin Wood

Written by Colin Wood

Colin Wood is the editor in chief of StateScoop and EdScoop. He's reported on government information technology policy for more than a decade, on topics including cybersecurity, IT governance and public safety.

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