One IT Vision and Benefits

Becoming One IT

The expectations of the General Assembly, the goals of the administration, and the needs of citizens can only be met by establishing one statewide authority over IT, including budgeting and personnel.

Based on the State’s previous efforts, a comprehensive review of its IT operations, and successful restructuring experiences in other states, North Carolina should implement a unified model for IT.

  • In order to improve operations, management, and governance, we recommend that the State form a Department of Information Technology (DIT) as an agency in the Governor’s Cabinet.
  • The new department will be accountable for all aspects of information technology across the State. The University System, Local Education Agencies (LEAs), and community college campuses will retain their existing exemptions.

Why It Matters

A unified IT structure model most effectively meets the objectives of restructuring IT by providing clear accountability and authority for the governance and management of IT across the State. This recommended model has been proven to improve efficiency and realize benefits and savings more quickly. The benefits that can be expected through unifying funding, talent, IT systems and management practices include:

  • Enhanced Citizen Interactions and Satisfaction
  • More Efficient Information Technology Operations
  • Quality-Driven Project Performance
  • Streamlined and Effective Sourcing Practices
  • Institutionalized Businesses and IT Planning
  • Clear Accountability with Transparency
  • Enhanced Data and Analytics Capabilities
  • Integrated Risk and Security Management
  • Effective IT Talent Management

Creating a Department of Information Technology

The Previous State of IT: a Decentralized Model

  • The way the State managed and governed IT was inefficient. Agencies operated as independent businesses rather than as one statewide enterprise. Governor Pat McCrory asked his cabinet to break down silos and work as a team to serve the citizens of North Carolina, providing better customer service and efficiency.
  • Seventy-four percent of the State’s IT projects came in over budget and behind schedule. There was limited effort to aggregate buying power or identify shared technology solutions, which has led to the use of more than 1,000 systems that were never designed to work together.
  • Less than 25 percent of the State’s IT professionals worked for the Office of Information Technology Services. The majority of the State’s IT professionals were scattered across more than two dozen agencies.
  • Significant improvements have been made since 2013 by realigning cabinet agency IT resources under Executive Order 30, but comprehensive, sustainable reform required legislation creating The Department of Information Technology.

The Unified Model for One IT

  • At the direction of the General Assembly, the State Chief Information Officer (SCIO), along with other agencies, studied restructuring efforts in other states and identified a unified model as the best choice for North Carolina.
  • In December of 2014, the Governor and his cabinet agreed to the unified model, and the State CIO recommended that the General Assembly restructure the State’s IT resources by establishing a cabinet-level Department of Information Technology (DIT).
  • The McCrory administration made restructuring a priority, which was reflected in the Governor’s 2015 – 2017 budget and 2015 State of the State address. The State CIO submitted the biennial State IT plan in conjunction with the Governor’s budget, with a focus on implementing a unified One IT structure.
  • The unified model addresses the root cause of North Carolina’s IT challenges by defining a single source of accountability and authority to accelerate change, reduce costs, and more effectively manage IT resources.
  • The Department of Information Technology will enhance the State’s ability to attract, retain and reward IT talent by establishing a career path for IT professionals, introducing new compensation and benefit structures, expanding training opportunities, and paying closer to market rate for high- demand skills.

Impact on IT Professionals

  • The goal of restructuring is not to reduce the State’s IT workforce. Minimal reductions may occur through attrition and as open positions are re-evaluated and repurposed.
  • “Participating Agency” IT professionals will work for the new Department of Information Technology. Employees who support IT in areas such as Finance and Human Resources will become part of the new Department if their work relates primarily to IT functions.
  • The primary purpose of restructuring is to better manage our IT resources, not reassign them.There is no large-scale plan to move IT professionals to a different work location, but rather keep them closer to the business units they serve.
  • Previous laws and provisions, such as those related to project approval, procurement and architecture reviews, remain in place for all state agencies.

Transition Principles

  • Business as usual as plans are developed and communicated.
  • Plans for a phased transition of participating agencies to DIT.
  • Plans shall be coordinated (Collaborative), in writing (Transparent), with each agency, and shall address any issues unique to a specific agency.
  • The State CIO shall ensure that agencies' operations are not adversely impacted during the transition (Done Right).


  • Session Law 2015-241 creates the Department of Information Technology with SECTION 7A.1(b) transfers of OITS & SCIO to newly-formed DIT.
  • Statute includes past SCIO authorities regarding procurement, project management, architecture, security, etc. that will continue to be administered by the “Statewide IT Division” for all state agencies. DIT will continue to operate an IT “Shared Service Division.”
  • DIT and “participating agency” to “develop documentation to support the consolidation of enterprise information technology functions,” including:
    • Personnel management
    • Project management
    • Procurement
    • Hardware configuration and management
    • Software acquisition and management
    • Data center operations
    • Network operations
    • Security
    • §143B-1305

Who is Included?

  • “Participating Agencies” transitioning: Office of the Governor, DNCR, DHHS, DOR, DEQ, DOT,DOA, DOC, DIT, DVMA, GO, OSBM, OSHR, OSC §143B-1305
    • Participating agencies defined: any agency that has transferred its information technology personnel, operations, projects, assets, and funding to the DIT. §143B-1300
    • “Separate Agencies” can request to participate.
    • Federal funded groups and some commission will be planned for later wave.
  • State agency or agency defined: any agency, department, institution, commission, committee, board, division, bureau, office, unit, officer, or official of the State. The term does not include the legislative or judicial branches of government or The University of North Carolina. §143B-1300

Transition Approach

  • Primarily a Functional transition, i.e., Procurement, Architecture, Security, Infrastructure, Projects, Applications, etc.
  • Some Phased agency transitions, i.e., OITS and ENR (DEQ, DNCR, & DOC)


Pre-planning is underway, with the Planning phase beginning as resources can be on board following budget certification in mid-November 2015. During FY15-16, DIT will work with participating agencies to develop plans for the transition. Plans will consider how IT support will be provided and will consider unique agency issues. Once plans are completed for each agency, personnel and functions will transition.


DIT, with relevant agency, will develop and implement a process (due January 1, 2016) for:

  • Agency IT budgets;
  • Amounts transferred to DIT;
  • Rates/charge-back models;
  • Identifying cost savings; and
  • Rules or statutory changes needed to facilitate these efforts.

Federal funding considerations will be complex, carefully considered, and will likely be in later phases of the transition.

Next Steps

  • Pre-planning team preparing initial activities with Planning phase beginning after budget certification in mid-November 2015.
  • Communications will be shared on throughout the process.
  • SCIO will be joining “participating agency” staff meetings and organizing Q&A sessions in the coming months.
  • Monthly Agency CIO meeting will continue to include expanded team each quarter with a recurring agenda item on DIT Transition.