Fundamental IT Standards

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We will accomplish this mission and these values by adhering to the following Information Technology (IT) Fundamental Standards:

  1. Business needs drive IT solutions. Strategic partnerships will be established so that the benefits of IT are leveraged to maximize the productivity of staff and improve customer services.
  2. Approach IT undertakings as a partnership between the Technology Department and the other agencies.
  3. Evaluate business processes for redesign opportunities before automating them. Use new technologies to make new business methods a reality.
  4. Where practical, foster and build standard functional commonality across organizational boundaries.
  5. Implement contemporary, but proven, technologies. IT investment decisions will be based upon their overall value to the organization. This includes: consideration of return on investment; total cost of ownership; and evaluation and refinement of business process before new systems are acquired or major system enhancements are undertaken.
  6. Manage IT as an investment by:
    • Analyze project and infrastructure requirements through a multi-year planning and funding strategies. 
    • Limit resources dedicated to "legacy systems" (hardware and software approaching the end of its useful life). Designate systems as "legacy" and schedule their replacement. This approach will help focus investments toward the future rather than the present of past.
    • Invest in education and training to ensure that all staff understand and can apply current and future technologies.
    • Appropriate funding to maintain our strategic investments in technology.
  7. Hardware and software will adhere to open standards and minimize proprietary solutions. This approach will promote flexibility, cross-organization inter-operability, cost effectiveness, and mitigate the risk of dependence on individual vendors.
  8. Emphasize the purchase and integration of top quality, commercial-off-the-shelf software (COTS) - with minimal customization - to speed the delivery of new business applications. At times this will require redesigning some existing work processes to be compatible with COTS software packages.
  9. Manage the enterprise network as a fundamental building block of the IT infrastructure. The network will connect modern workstations and servers; provide both internal and external connectivity; will be flexible, expandable, and maintainable; be fully integrated using open standards and capable of providing for the free movement of data, graphics, image, video, and voice.
  10. Maintain a repository for common information objects (e.g., databases, files, records, methods, application inventories) that can be shared and reused.
  11. Establish an Enterprise Data Architecture. Information, in all its forms, is an organization-wide strategic resource to be managed and shared across operational lines. Strive to capture data once in order to avoid cost, duplication of effort and potential for error and share the data whenever possible. Establish and use common data and common databases to the fullest extent.