Image by: MF3d, ©2019 Getty Images

In 2019, look for data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to become game-changing technologies for the government sector, according to a recent Gartner survey. Government chief information officers (CIOs) report that their main technology investments for the new year are equally focused on business intelligence (BI)/data analytics (43%) and cyber/information security (43%). Cloud services/solutions fell to the third spot at 39%.

“Taking advantage of data is at the heart of digital government—it’s the central asset to all that government oversees and provides,” says Rick Howard, Research Vice President at Gartner.

While the government sector slightly lags in prioritizing their digital initiatives (at 18%)—as compared with 23% from other industries surveyed—government respondents say they are advancing the maturity of their digital services, with 29% reporting that their organizations are scaling and refining their digital initiatives, up 15% from 2018.

Despite this progress, only 17% of government CIOs plan to increase their investment in digital business initiatives, compared with 34% of CIOs in other industries. The survey shows that while government CIOs are demonstrating a clear vision for digital transformation, 45% of respondents report they still lack the information technology (IT) and business resources required to execute it.

It's clear that the desire to digitally transform is on the minds of government CIOs. So, why are things not progressing more rapidly? While a case can be made for digital transformation, it is likely not a priority over other municipal projects and, as such, may be more susceptible to budget cuts, lack of complete support, and continuity.

In my opinion, this is where government leadership can set an example for all industries, not only driving digital transformation across all levels of government but across other industries as well.

Gartner’s 2019 CIO Agenda Survey gathered data from 3,102 CIO respondents in 89 countries and across major industries, including 528 government CIOs.

Bob Larrivee is a recognized expert in the application of advanced technologies and process improvement to solve business problems and enhance business operations. He reports on the latest information management technologies for DOCUMENT Strategy. Follow him on Twitter @BobLarrivee or visit