Georgia’s Information Technology Excellence
The state of Georgia has taken bold steps to modernize its IT enterprise over the past decade. In doing so, it has earned a national reputation as a leader among states in the use of technology to transform government operations. At the same time, Georgia’s pioneering approach to partnering with world-class technology companies has become a model for other governments. The following accomplishments and honors from 2020 and 2021 document Georgia’s continuing successes.
Good news from the latest report card - the state of Georgia earned a grade of A, the highest score possible, in the 2020 Digital States Survey. Not only that, but Georgia also ranked among the top three states in the Leadership category.
What does it take to get this A? Digital States criteria say it indicates a state that is demonstrating "strong innovation, high performing solutions with verifiable impacts across all categories. Excellent practices have been applied in all aspects of operations, governance, and administration."
States are judged every two years by the Center for Digital Government, a national research and advisory institute focused on information technology policies and best practices in state and local governments. Over the last nearly 25 years, the center has evaluated states' use of technology to improve service delivery, increase capacity, streamline operations, and reach policy goals. Each state is then assigned a letter grade based on quantifiable results.
Georgia's A marks its second consecutive top score going back to the 2018 survey. The state earned an A- in 2016. Georgia shared the A status in 2020 with only four other states: Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, and Utah. That is select company to be in. It reinforces Georgia's status as one of the nation's leading states in the use of technology to serve its citizens and improve government efficiency.
The category of Leadership gauges a state's technology strategy on consistency and support of the governor’s priorities, as well as effectiveness of collaboration with agencies on programs, planning, and policies.
Georgia Boasts Recognition in National Association of State Chief Information Officers Information Technology Awards
The Georgia Department of Labor (DOL) identity verification project received a first-place award in the National Association of State CIOs (NASCIO) State IT Recognition Awards. DOL integrated the ID.me identity verification software into their unemployment insurance benefits payments system in early fall 2020. It enhanced fraud detection capabilities and helped DOL speed processing of verified claims, getting much-needed relief into the hands of Georgians.
Georgia’s broadband map was named a finalist in the awards. The interactive online map was created collaboratively among the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, Georgia Technology Authority, and Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia.
Request Official Vital Event Records Earns Service to the Citizen™ Award
GTA's Request Official Vital Event Records (ROVER) service was selected as a winner of the 2021 Service to the Citizen™: Champions of Change Awards in the State and Local Government category. The ROVER service enables the online ordering of certified copies of Georgia birth and death certificates. Orders are fulfilled by the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) Office of Vital Records. The goal of the Service to the Citizen™ Awards is to recognize public servants who demonstrate excellence in their delivery of services that positively influence constituents' lives.
Technology Innovation Showcase
The Georgia Technology Authority has announced the honorees of the 2021 Technology Innovation Showcase, selecting seven projects that display innovative uses of technology that enable agencies to better meet constituent expectations for services and information, improve operating efficiency, and conserve tax dollars.
Ag Inputs Division Electronic Inspection Platform
Georgia Department of Agriculture
Out of a recent partnership with Mi-Corporation, the Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) developed the groundbreaking Agricultural Inputs (Ag Inputs) Division Electronic Inspection Platform. The platform streamlines the inspection process for the division’s nearly 30 regulatory inspection and more than 10 sample collection forms for the state’s feed, fertilizer, lime, seed, pesticide, soil amendment, and horticultural growing media programs. In addition, the GDA Ag Inputs Division Electronic Inspection Platform promotes increased communication between field staff and program managers and quicker analysis of inspection results.
Contract Management and Vendor Connect
Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities
The Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) Contract Management and Vendor Connect program is a comprehensive enterprise application that offers DBHDD and its partners greater visibility into the contract workflow. The program makes the contracting process transparent through the centralized Contract Management Application (CMA) and Vendor Connect (VC). The applications contain single sign on capabilities, workflow management tools, contract approval tracking and visibility, and more, using user-friendly, web-based .NET apps. Ultimately, it allows DBHDD to better manage their network of providers and vendors who serve Georgia constituents.
Intelligent Mail Bar Code
Georgia Department of Driver Services
Failure to pay child support, appear in court, or respond to a traffic citation are all reasons that the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) can suspend a constituent’s driver’s license. Early in 2020, DDS prioritized a more cost-efficient way to send these suspension notices, and the Intelligent Mail Bar Code helps meet this goal. The barcode leverages a 65-bar USPS barcode used to track mail, routing codes, a mail identifier (MID), a unique serial number strategy, and reporting with USPS to address several opportunities for increased efficiency, improved service, and enhanced delivery of driver’s license suspension notices.
Georgia Department of Labor
To mitigate the risks related to unauthorized access to UI insurance, DOL instituted an identity authentication project. The first phase of this project, ID.me, encompasses federally certified identity verification, including flagging applicants that are unbanked, have no credit, and more, while simultaneously blocking evident fraud. Based on these flags, DOL directs individuals to verify at the ID.me hosted landing page (HLP), and if DOL receives the “all clear” results back from ID.me, the department can remove any flags on the account and process payments quickly.
Georgia Department of Transportation
Every month, the Georgia Department of Transportation (DOT) receives thousands of invoices from their vendors. Some of that invoice processing took place manually, taking 15 to 25 days to complete - until DOT made AP process automation a priority. To do that, DOT launched a software known as Perceptive Content. The initiative resulted in a standard eight days to process an invoice, no more paper receipts for payments on purchase orders, no more voucher summary forms for payments on contracts payable invoices, and more.
The Dual Enrollment Funding Application
Georgia Student Finance Commission
The Dual Enrollment Funding Application, part of the GAfutures enterprise, was developed in .NET with an Oracle database. Through the new streamlined process of enrolling high school students in college courses, all parties use the same interface to transfer information among stakeholders. The system has a universal view, allowing users to view application status and next steps. In the first year, 59,000 Georgia high school students successfully registered and were approved for funding for 155,000 college courses. This new process also brought online dual enrollment funding applications for over 2,500 home study students whose process previously was entirely manual.
Economic Development Systems, Student, and Industry Management Enterprise Resource Planning
Technical College System of Georgia
In June 2019, the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) implemented an enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform to provide a flexible cloud enterprise technology solution for its 22 member colleges economic development offices. As a result, TCSG is enjoying an ERP capable of consolidating daily operational workflows, systems, and processes by way of a cost-effective solution with low administrative overhead. Most importantly, the Economic Development Systems, Student and Industry Management ERP is a system that provides ease of use for employees while delivering optimization of activities that results in positive client experience journeys.