The ongoing transformation of IT in Manitoba

OTTAWA — The public service has to change the way it views government, according to the man overseeing Manitoba’s ongoing IT transformation.


“The citizen looks at government differently than we do,.” said John Clarkson, deputy minister of science, technology, energy and mines, speaking at the GTEC public sector technology conference here on Wednesday.


“They don’t care who we are, where we are, what government we are. They just want the service.”


Rather than functioning as 20 or 25 siloed entities, “we have to have a single corporate view of who we are.”


Manitoba is GTEC 2011’s showcase province. Since the late 1990s, when Manitoba was retooling in response to the Y2K threat, Manitoba’s IT infrastructure has been focused on centralized corporate service for all of government. A comprehensive desktop program, the rollout of an enterprise resource management system and a centralized networks were the first building blocks in the transformation.


“These … gave us the capacities to look at things differently,” Clarkson said. The province doesn’t simply use its ERP system from SAP AG for internal operations, but also builds customer-facing applications on the system. Access Manitoba, for example, began with an apprencticeship program built on SAP. That’s been extended to business and social assistance programs.


The centralized network is also extended to public applications. “Those types of infrastructure don’t need to be repeated,” Clarkson said.


eHealth Manitoba is part of the ongoing transformation of IT service delivery in the province. Lasts year, the organization rolled out the first version of its eChart electronic medical record system to all the province’s health stakeholders, from hospitals and clinics to pharmacies. In this video, eHealth Manitoba chief information officer Roger Girard explains eChart and how it fits in the four pillars of the province’s e-health initiative and the ongoing transformation of IT service delivery in Manitoba.


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