Many state employees are no strangers to reorganizations of departments and operations, particularly in the last four years. When the Governor came into office, the State was facing a $5 billion budget deficit, and many basic operations needed to be overhauled to cut costs while maintaining and improving service levels. The State embarked on an aggressive reorganization of State government that included centralization of many functions and the merging of various agencies. While these actions prudently addressed unprecedented fiscal challenges, they also demanded sacrifice and patience. The Shared Services Program differs from these past reorganizations in several important ways:
The State is in a fundamentally different fiscal situation in 2007 than it was just a few years ago. Structural improvements including pension and Medicaid reforms, as well as various efficiency initiatives, have provided the State with the opportunity to commit greater resources to more recent reorganizations such as the Shared Services Program.
Many of the efficiency initiatives in the past several years were based on the consolidated centralization of functions into one agency. While this made sense for extremely specialized or commoditized services, such as fleet management, this centralized approach would not work as effectively for fiscal and HR service needs, which vary greatly among agencies. As a result, the Shared Services Program is being designed around the Shared Services Centers, which by design will be more responsive to individual agency needs.
The Shared Services Team is taking a more deliberative approach to designing the future fiscal and HR operations, which relies upon the involvement and expertise of hundreds of state employees.
In contrast to previous reorganizations which were focused almost solely on cost reduction, the Shared Services Program aims principally to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our fiscal and HR operations, by investing in the tools and resources that will help our fiscal and HR employees better meet the demands of agencies and the State at-large.