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How the Public Sector is Changing Through Digital Transformation

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ASPA as an organization.

By Chloe Kirby
June 29, 2021

Numerous departments and agencies in the public sector exist to serve, protect and connect citizens to their government. While these agencies often face numerous challenges in their efforts, a growing movement to push for digital transformation in these departments is changing the connection the public has with the government. While the use of advanced technologies is nothing new in the more ambitious elements of these civilian and military agencies, a new movement to stay data-secure and transparent to all is pushing the public sector to new heights.

What Does Digital Transformation Offer the Public Sector?

A digital transformation agency will argue that anyone who hasn’t made the transition to this effective approach of organizational structure will do so shortly. This is increasingly true for any and all aspects of the public sector. The numerous agencies and departments that help connect the government to its people are finding the digital world to be increasingly influential. Through online experiences, people have more insight into these departments than ever before. As a number of issues continue to pose a risk to the United States, digital transformation offers solutions and necessary increases in transparency to adjust to this new normal we live in.

Many of today’s top concerns involve some sort of technology. These issues include:

  • Ongoing national security concerns.
  • Digital hacking and data breaches.
  • The rise of the dark web/
  • Concerns with election tampering and influence from inside and outside the United States.

How can digital transformation address these concerns? Well, digital transformation addresses the problems of today in a way that builds a roadmap to better organizational structure and stature. Here are a few examples.

Addressing Rising Cyberattacks

In 2020, a number of industries saw increases in cyberattacks. Most notably for the public sector, the SolarWinds hack of many major agencies in the United States government, among private corporations, raised ongoing concerns to new levels of worry. Both individuals and public departments are seeing an increase in threats to digital safety and security. Digital transformation puts these concerns at the forefront of all efforts.

A Changing Workforce

More people worked from home in 2020 than ever before. While the COVID-19 pandemic is winding down from its major impact on society, some are staying at home. For departments facing budget cuts, the move to remote workforces can help cut wasteful spending and increase employee satisfaction. Digital transformation helps to ensure employees are interconnected and safely tapped into servers from wherever they call the office.

Increased Transparency for Citizens

Lastly, more and more citizens are growing increasingly suspicious of government agencies and their operations. To safely increase visibility into the actions of these agencies, digital transformation helps to highlight what occurs at these departments and how the decisions impact citizens. 

Digital transformation is helping to modernize the public sector and it comes with quite a few additional benefits. As we watch the public sector expand through digital transformation, many concerns will be addressed as the United States government aims to comprehensively improve the security and oversight of these key organizations. 


Author: Chloe Kirby is a writer and digital marketing professional. She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree at McGill University in Montreal, Canada and her Master’s Degree at Goldsmiths University in London, England. Chloe has professional experience in e-commerce, digital marketing, and copywriting. For the last year she has been working in New York City.

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The American Society for Public Administration is the largest and most prominent professional association for public administration. It is dedicated to advancing the art, science, teaching and practice of public and non-profit administration.

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