National agencies recognize Marin for digital upgrades and transparency
The County of Marin has captured a national award for its efforts to digitize information for both residents and employees and to increase online interaction between those two groups.
Marin was recognized in the 2019 Digital Counties Survey, conducted by the Center for Digital Government (CDG) in partnership with the National Association of Counties (NACo) and held during the NACo annual conference on July 13. The awards honor counties for programs that encourage government innovation and collaboration while demonstrating technological and cybersecurity excellence.
Marin’s Department of Information Services and Technology (IST) took fourth place out of entries from counties with populations between 250,000 and 499,999.
CDG and NACo said Marin IST, led by Chief Information Officer Liza Massey, was “propelled by thoughtful IT and strategic planning, community engagement via well-designed tools and apps, and execution of a comprehensive cybersecurity program connected across the enterprise.”
“This recognition is for the entire County, not just IST,” Massey said. “Our 37-page application included collaborative initiatives from across Marin. These innovations are driven by Marin residents’ priorities and the County’s desire for community input, government transparency, and information security.”
Deployment of Compass, a new organizational performance management program, was high lighted by CDG. Compass uses data to drive performance, with the goal of displaying it in dashboards built atop the department’s existing data tools from Socrata Public and Tableau. This year, County departments are honing their missions, strategies, tools and processes to engage employees, with the goal of showing data for all strategies via internal- and external-facing dashboards by April 2020.
The County’s 5 Year Business Plan and IST’s Strategic Plan are guiding Marin through 2020, but tech-forward business processes also are helping connect officials to the residents they serve. The County has worked since 2017 to make engagements mobile, paperless and citizen-centric, deploying texting alerts and electronic signatures for County contracts to support internal digital document workflows. IST will be totally paperless this year for recruitment.
IST’s five-year plan centers on security and the department — reorganized last year — has tripled its security resources. With support from the County’s Human Resources Department, IST has promoted its cybersecurity awareness and training platform and made annual information security training mandatory for all employees. Internal monthly mock “phishing” campaigns continue, and employees can report suspected phishing via a tool implemented last year. An update to the County’s cybersecurity, incident and ransomware response plans will be completed by the end of 2019.
The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute focused on technology policy and best practices in state and local government. The National Association of Counties, founded in 1935, unites America’s 3,069 county governments and advocates with a collective voice to promote exemplary leadership in public service.