Click here to close now.


@CloudExpo Authors: Liz McMillan, Marc Crespi, SmartBear Blog, Anders Wallgren, Cloud Best Practices Network

News Feed Item

Microsoft and APHSA Survey Reveals Status of Health and Human Services IT Modernization Efforts and a Promising Future for Transformation

States in need of best practices and flexible IT solutions that improve access, quality and efficiency in the financing and delivery of health and human services programs.

REDMOND, Wash., and WASHINGTON, Nov. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Public Human Services Association (APHSA), in coordination with Microsoft Corp., today released the results of a new survey of health and human services departments and agencies nationwide. The report, "A Promising Future for HHS Transformation — The Real Impact of IT System Modernization," includes survey findings that identify the expectations, strategies and practices that health and human services (HHS) agencies use for the planning, acquisition and implementation of their information technology (IT) systems.


APHSA and Microsoft surveyed 67 agency program leaders from 35 states at various stages of modernizing their HHS IT systems, from those who have implemented solutions for eligibility determination and benefit issuance, case management, and online self-service to those who had not yet modernized. The survey focuses on capturing the agencies' experience with organizational transformation planning efforts, the agencies' system life-cycle challenges, and the impact and benefits the agencies experienced from IT modernization. The results revealed that with dynamic executive leadership, due diligence and solid program management practices, departments are seeing incremental benefits expected of IT modernization, but a number of challenges remain. With those challenges, a bright path exists to achieve the desired business benefits for transformation through the promise of today's technology.

The key takeaways from the survey are as follows:


  • Forty-three percent of agencies have implemented a new HHS IT system within the past 10 years.
  • Fifty-seven percent have not modernized, yet most (55 percent) plan to do so over the next three to five years.
  • Nineteen percent of respondents had no plans to modernize, mainly due to lack of funding.
  • Of the states planning to modernize, approximately 22 percent are very likely to consider the cloud for future system deployment.


  • Forty percent of agencies surveyed experienced an implementation timeframe of more than three years when implementing a new system. Long timeframes generally correlate to agencies with a larger number of business rules and practices to re-engineer complex IT environments with multiple legacy systems, requiring extensive training and support. States with larger constituent populations also report longer implementation timeframes, but the programs themselves (e.g., Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Child Welfare, etc.) did not have a direct correlation.

Benefits and Expectations

  • State agencies planning to modernize (55 percent) expect a new system to meet about 63 percent of their needs in the areas of customer-centricity, improved self-service and improved decision-making.

A full report and APHSA webinar on the survey findings can be found at

Of the states that modernized, 100 percent cited the need to extend system functionality with nondevelopers, and 80 percent felt the amount of required customization and interoperability across programs and systems was not in line with expectations. These deficiencies were perceived as factors that lead to project delays and contract and scope modifications.

"State human service agencies average spending $40 million over a three-year implementation timeframe, but the time has never been more opportune to benefit from IT advances to achieve the mission of HHS agencies," said Tracy Wareing, APHSA executive director. "As an organization, we are committed to sharing best practices with one another to ensure that human service agencies are achieving the outcomes we seek."

Modernization Best Practices

The agencies surveyed also outlined the reasons for their successes, as well as key learnings on the planning and implementation of HHS IT systems:

  • Leadership and effective cross-boundary communication is a bedrock requirement to effectively leverage technology. Today's technology can help facilitate effective communication throughout and across organizations. However, it can only do so when organizations define clear goals for communication and work together to support implementation of the technical tools.
  • Technology must be nimble and responsive to change. HHS environments are dynamic and changing rapidly. IT solutions must be able to adapt effectively to this constant change.
  • Gaining cost efficiencies requires the use of benchmarks and measurement. IT deployments are long-term projects, typically taking years to complete. To ensure that projects stay on track and focused on the original, key deliverables, it is critical to define benchmarks and track against them.

"Many states are taking a forward-thinking and visionary approach to transforming their programs and modernizing IT systems," said Laura Caliguiri, managing director, U.S. Public Sector Health and Human Services, Microsoft. "Human services agencies are leveraging technology advancements and best practices, enabling an incremental strategy to ensure immediate benefits from the new systems and are able to accommodate policy and program changes."

States Achieving Intended Benefits of IT Modernization Efforts

IT can play a pivotal role in government redesign, delivering on strategies to connect systems and streamline data to eliminate redundancies, reduce costs and increase efficiencies of HHS, and several states are already seeing improved outcomes due to these advancements.

Florida's Office of Early Learning and the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (DIDD) are using Microsoft Dynamics CRM, a customer relationship management solution that can improve access, quality and efficiency in the financing and delivery of HHS programs. By building a foundation that can be configured to work the way an agency needs it to, whether it is on-premises or in the cloud, to help streamline processes, reduce costs, and improve staff productivity and citizen service, agencies and case workers have access to enhanced visibility, streamlined processes, and improved coordination and outcomes.

Florida's Office of Early Learning is working with HP to deliver the Early Learning Information System (ELIS), built on Microsoft Dynamics CRM, for the enhancement of the state's early learning programs. ELIS is a consolidated information system that manages the early learning programs used by 300,000 Florida families whose children attend the Voluntary Prekindergarten Education and School Readiness programs. The benefits of ELIS will include streamlined administrative processes, reduced potential for fraud and overpayments, data-sharing capabilities across multiple stakeholders, and easy access to child care resource and referral information.

The Tennessee DIDD selected Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Mid-America Consulting Group to help the organization operate more effectively with greater transparency, greater accountability and reduced costs — ultimately delivering greater value for the taxpayer. Most important, the Tennessee DIDD hopes to provide greater protection and significantly improve the lives of the people and families who depend on its services.

More information on states achieving the intended benefits of IT modernization can be found here.


APHSA is a bipartisan, nonprofit organization representing appointed state and local health and human service agency commissioners. APHSA is the only association of the nation's top government human service executives, including states, the District of Columbia, and the territories, their key state program managers, and hundreds of county-level human service directors nationwide.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

SOURCE Microsoft Corp.

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@CloudExpo Stories
As the world moves towards more DevOps and microservices, application deployment to the cloud ought to become a lot simpler. The microservices architecture, which is the basis of many new age distributed systems such as OpenStack, NetFlix and so on, is at the heart of Cloud Foundry - a complete developer-oriented Platform as a Service (PaaS) that is IaaS agnostic and supports vCloud, OpenStack and AWS. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Raghavan "Rags" Srinivas, an Architect/Developer Evangeli...
Developing software for the Internet of Things (IoT) comes with its own set of challenges. Security, privacy, and unified standards are a few key issues. In addition, each IoT product is comprised of at least three separate application components: the software embedded in the device, the backend big-data service, and the mobile application for the end user's controls. Each component is developed by a different team, using different technologies and practices, and deployed to a different stack/...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Key Information Systems, Inc. (KeyInfo), a leading cloud and infrastructure provider offering integrated solutions to enterprises, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Key Information Systems is a leading regional systems integrator with world-class compute, storage and networking solutions and professional services for the most advanced softwa...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting will feature upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special IoT documentary which will be filmed on the expo floor November 3 to 5, 2015 in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to BBC in UK and the largest in Asia with many award winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley. The program will be aired during the highest viewership season of ...
WebRTC converts the entire network into a ubiquitous communications cloud thereby connecting anytime, anywhere through any point. In his session at WebRTC Summit,, Mark Castleman, EIR at Bell Labs and Head of Future X Labs, will discuss how the transformational nature of communications is achieved through the democratizing force of WebRTC. WebRTC is doing for voice what HTML did for web content.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Luxoft Holding, Inc., a leading provider of software development services and innovative IT solutions, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Luxoft’s software development services consist of core and mission-critical custom software development and support, product engineering and testing, and technology consulting.
In today's digital world, change is the one constant. Disruptive innovations like cloud, mobility, social media, and the Internet of Things have reshaped the market and set new standards in customer expectations. To remain competitive, businesses must tap the potential of emerging technologies and markets through the rapid release of new products and services. However, the rigid and siloed structures of traditional IT platforms and processes are slowing them down – resulting in lengthy delivery ...
According to Forrester, public cloud platforms are evolving, blurring the lines between Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and Platform as a Service (PaaS) in order to satisfy the needs of enterprises and widen their appeal to developers. In The Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Public Cloud Platforms, Q4 2014, Forrester evaluates the 16 most significant Enterprise Public Cloud Platforms and details how each vendor fulfills the 19 evaluation criteria points.
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.
The modern software development landscape consists of best practices and tools that allow teams to deliver software in a near-continuous manner. By adopting a culture of automation, measurement and sharing, the time to ship code has been greatly reduced, allowing for shorter release cycles and quicker feedback from customers and users. Still, with all of these tools and methods, how can teams stay on top of what is taking place across their infrastructure and codebase? Hopping between services a...
SYS-CON Events announced today that G2G3 will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Based on a collective appreciation for user experience, design, and technology, G2G3 is uniquely qualified and motivated to redefine how organizations and people engage in an increasingly digital world.
The cloud has reached mainstream IT. Those 18.7 million data centers out there (server closets to corporate data centers to colocation deployments) are moving to the cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Achim Weiss, CEO & co-founder of ProfitBricks, will share how two companies – one in the U.S. and one in Germany – are achieving their goals with cloud infrastructure. More than a case study, he will share the details of how they prioritized their cloud computing infrastructure deployments ...
Interested in leveraging automation technologies and a cloud architecture to make developers more productive? Learn how PaaS can benefit your organization to help you streamline your application development, allow you to use existing infrastructure and improve operational efficiencies. Begin charting your path to PaaS with OpenShift Enterprise.
Data loss happens, even in the cloud. In fact, if your company has adopted a cloud application in the past three years, data loss has probably happened, whether you know it or not. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bryan Forrester, Senior Vice President of Sales at eFolder, will present how common and costly cloud application data loss is and what measures you can take to protect your organization from data loss.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, Chief Architect at CTS, will explore the synergy of Big Data and IoT. First he will take a closer look at the Internet of Things and Big Data individually, in terms of what, which, why, where, when, who, how and how much. Then he will explore the relationship between IoT and Big Data. Specifically, he will drill down to how the 4Vs aspects intersect with IoT: Volume, Variety, Velocity and Value. In turn, Tony will analyze how the key components of IoT ...
When it comes to IoT in the enterprise, namely the commercial building and hospitality markets, a benefit not getting the attention it deserves is energy efficiency, and IoT’s direct impact on a cleaner, greener environment when installed in smart buildings. Until now clean technology was offered piecemeal and led with point solutions that require significant systems integration to orchestrate and deploy. There didn't exist a 'top down' approach that can manage and monitor the way a Smart Buildi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Raxak has been named “Media & Session Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Raxak Protect automates security compliance across private and public clouds. Using the SaaS tool or managed service, developers can deploy cloud apps quickly, cost-effectively, and without error.
As-a-service models offer huge opportunities, but also complicate security. It may seem that the easiest way to migrate to a new architectural model is to let others, experts in their field, do the work. This has given rise to many as-a-service models throughout the industry and across the entire technology stack, from software to infrastructure. While this has unlocked huge opportunities to accelerate the deployment of new capabilities or increase economic efficiencies within an organization, i...
“All our customers are looking at the cloud ecosystem as an important part of their overall product strategy. Some see it evolve as a multi-cloud / hybrid cloud strategy, while others are embracing all forms of cloud offerings like PaaS, IaaS and SaaS in their solutions,” noted Suhas Joshi, Vice President – Technology, at Harbinger Group, in this exclusive Q&A with Cloud Expo Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff.