Montgomery County (Pa.) CIO Anthony Olivieri began preparing for a telework environment as early as January.

Sep 29 2020

How Agencies Moved Quickly to a Secure Telework Environment

Faced with a pandemic, states, counties and cities made the shift to remote work — in a hurry.

Located just north of Philadelphia, Montgomery County, Pa., was already weighing options for a flexible work environment when the pandemic struck, bumping workers out of county offices. County CIO Anthony Olivieri and his department began examining the potential impacts of the pandemic on government agencies in January, and they determined they could ramp up existing agreements to fulfill their needs.

“Our meetings now are virtual — meetings for budget, training and everything else,” Olivieri says. “Our everyday meetings have moved to a virtual platform, and we rely heavily on feedback from our users. We reach out to our user base and collect feedback regularly in a survey, and then we adjust to make sure that they have what they need.”

Olivieri is not alone in his rapid shift to a virtual work environment. City and state governments, as well as counties, could not simply shut down in the face of the emergency. Collaborative technology has been the crucial component in making sure that governments can continue to serve their constituents — even if statehouses, courthouses and other office buildings have closed their doors. State and local governments depended on tech for their teams to continue to work together, and they needed solutions that were scalable and secure.

“IT has kept governments running over the past several months,” says Meredith Ward, director of policy and research for the National Association of State Chief Information...

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Photography By Matthew Furman