• Priorities Podcast

Nebraska CIO reflects on IT consolidation

On the Priorities podcast, Nebraska CIO Ed Toner says IT consolidations over the past seven years have enabled his office to think more strategically.

“We’ve kind of moved from that tactical phase that we were in in the first few years of trying to get our fundamentals right,” Toner says. “And so we’re kind of making that next turn, which is strategy — helping all the agencies that we support in their strategy development.”

For Toner, who embarked on a sweeping consolidation effort shortly after being named as CIO in 2015, having the capacity to focus on agency IT strategy rather than central IT operations represents a big, exciting shift for his team.

“[It] took us the first few years to get our own house in order to make sure that we’re delivering on those services that we should be delivering on,” Toner says. “[Now] were getting much more involved in our agencies’ business — and I don’t mean that in a bad way.”

Toner was appointed in 2015 by outgoing Gov. Pete Ricketts, who is term-limited. Ricketts will be replaced next week by Gov.-elect Jim Pillen.

Also on the show, Tennessee CIO Stephanie Dedmon outlines the state’s efforts to embrace robotic process automation. And Vermont’s interim CIO, Shawn Nailor, explains the path forward for the state’s digital services. 

StateScoop’s Priorities Podcast is available every Thursday. Listen more here.

If you want to hear more of the latest across the state and local government technology community, subscribe to the Priorities Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Soundcloud, Spotify and Stitcher.

Priorities Podcast


Each week, the Priorities Podcast will take you through the latest in state and local government technology news and analysis. The program will explore trending stories throughout the week, as well as feature conversations with top executives across government and industry on things like modernization, emerging technology and digital services.

Hosted by Jake Williams

Jake Williams is the vice president of content and community for StateScoop and EdScoop. He's spent nearly a decade in the government IT market, covering the ins and outs of state and local government, as well as higher education. He started his journalism career in his native Pennsylvania and has also worked as a reporter for Campaigns & Elections magazine.