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Accela’s Newest Tool Targets Government IT Labor Woes

The California cloud software firm has released a product designed to handle some of the most redundant and tedious tech tasks for government as public agencies are dealing with IT hiring and retaining challenges.

Accela, which sells permitting, licensing, service request management and other technology to public agencies, has released a product designed to reduce redundancy and tedium for government officials — and help them deal with labor woes.

The California-based company has launched Managed Application Services, meant to provide customers with “day-to-day system administration and proactive optimization of Accela solutions,” according to an Accela statement.

The product release comes as local and state public agencies deal with the general labor shortage and a tight supply of IT talent, the company said.

“Accela Managed Application Services is helping governments bridge this IT talent gap and enabling them to align available agency resources with strategic priorities and reduce the time staff spends on redundant or tedious duties and system maintenance,” said Brenda DeGregory, vice president of service delivery at Accela, in an email interview with Government Technology, adding that the service also includes “our expert Accela-trained professionals.”

She said the subscription-based product provides end-to-end service for Accela cloud customers and serves as an “extension to in-house IT teams,” which in turn frees public agency workers from basic administration and optimization tasks. Specific functions of the new product include the testing of new tech releases, service packs and fixes, the management of user accounts and permissions, modification of forms, report creation and troubleshooting.

“Accela Managed Application Services is the logical complement to our IT team,” said Anthony McPherson, CIO of DuPage County, Ill., in the Accela statement. “With this service, our team is freed up from monotonous administration and instead freed up for more strategic projects.”

DeGregory said the new Accela tool will stand out from other such products in the market.

“Other providers who offer similar services typically deliver them on an hourly rate basis, whereas our service package-based model encompasses everything a customer needs, such as day-to-day system administration, proactive service improvement and configuration enhancements, in a single subscription,” she said. “Our offering gives customers unique year-to-year budgeting predictability, increases service reliability and maximizes value.”

The product debuts as more attention shifts to smarter hiring and more effective retention of technology professionals in government, a move that includes training and grants. As DeGregory tells it, hiring, training and holding on to IT professionals stands as a main challenge for local governments.

“It’s a significant pain point that Accela is uniquely able to solve because of our decades of experience serving state and local governments,” she said. “The trendline indicates that this shortage is not a short-term blip, but rather a broader, longer-term market reality.”
Thad Rueter writes about the business of government technology. He covered local and state governments for newspapers in the Chicago area and Florida, as well as e-commerce, digital payments and related topics for various publications. He lives in New Orleans.