How the State of Texas is Creating a Future Looking IT Strategy


Recently, at Extreme Connect, Amanda Crawford, the CIO of the State of Texas, took the main stage to share her thoughts on creating a forward-thinking and collaborative IT strategy that prioritizes citizens. At the heart of the State of Texas' digital revolution lies a unique IT strategy designed to cater to the diverse needs of their citizens. Crawford champions a federated model, empowering individual agencies to work how they see fit. Rejecting a one-size-fits-all approach, the State of Texas embraces collaboration, harnessing the collective expertise of its stakeholders to drive innovation and deliver services to its citizens.


Future-Proofing Technology

With technology evolving rapidly, the State of Texas recognizes the need for a forward-looking approach. Their strategy is built on foundational principles such as security, innovation, data governance, and digital government, allowing them to adapt and integrate new technologies seamlessly as they emerge. Crawford emphasizes the importance of leveraging partnerships with the private sector to meet the challenges posed by their vast state government, which serves 37 million Texans. Ultimately, the focus remains on how technology can positively impact the lives of citizens, underscoring the human-centric approach driving the State of Texas' future-proofing efforts.


Empowering Citizens with Digital Solutions

Introducing "Texas by Texas" or TXT, a digital assistant developed by the state's agency, is at the forefront of their efforts. This app transforms how citizens interact with government services, offering convenience, accessibility, and security. With features such as multi-factor authentication and push notices, citizens can seamlessly handle tasks like renewing vehicle registrations, driver's licenses, and occupational licenses from anywhere, anytime, and from any device.

The emphasis remains on delivering value to citizens, making their lives more accessible, and empowering them to enjoy more of what makes Texas great. With over 7 million Texans having already created an account on the app within a little over two years since its launch, TXT demonstrates its significant impact and the difference it's making in the state. Through initiatives like TXT, Texas prioritizes citizen-centric solutions, setting a new standard for government service delivery in the digital age.


The Top Priority for State Governments: Security

In a proactive move to safeguard its digital infrastructure, the State of Texas has embraced a whole-of-state cybersecurity strategy. This strategy encompasses various initiatives, including establishing Technology Regional Security Operations (TRS) and partnerships with local colleges. The TRS Operations serve as regional security operations centers, providing a spectrum of essential security services to local governments across Texas. Recognizing the vulnerability of local governments to cyber threats, the state prioritizes empowering them with direct access to state-funded security services. This approach not only bolsters the resilience of local entities but also fosters a collaborative ecosystem for combating cyber threats collectively.

This regional security operations center provides security services — secure networking, education, outreach, incident response — to local governments in Texas. We know that local governments are truly some of the most vulnerable. They can provide those services directly with state funding.
Amanda Crawford
CIO for the State of Texas

Central to the state's cybersecurity strategy is the unique collaboration with local colleges and universities. By forging partnerships with academic institutions, the state leverages their expertise, resources, and trusted relationships within communities. Through strategic partnerships with universities, the State of Texas is fortifying its cybersecurity defenses and nurturing a culture of collaboration and knowledge-sharing to stay ahead of evolving cyber threats.

There is not another state in the country that has followed this model and the partnerships with the universities. There are a lot of economies of scale that you can leverage with the universities. They are partners in their communities, and they are trusted by the communities.
Amanda Crawford
CIO for the State of Texas

Crawford's address at Extreme Connect illuminated the State of Texas' commitment to a citizen-centric and forward-thinking approach to technology and governance. By championing a federated model and prioritizing collaboration, Texas is setting a new standard for government service delivery. From future-proofing technology to empowering citizens with digital solutions like TXT, the state is leveraging innovation to enhance accessibility and efficiency. Texas' proactive cybersecurity strategy, including TRS Operations and partnerships with local colleges, underscores their dedication to safeguarding digital infrastructure and fostering a secure environment for all Texans. Through these initiatives and partnerships, Texas continues to lead the charge in leveraging technology for the betterment of its citizens and sets an inspiring example for states across the nation.

About the Author
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Cammy Perry
Content Marketing Specialist

Cammy is a Content Marketing Specialist at Extreme Networks, leveraging her expertise to craft thought leadership and engaging content.

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