Agency App Development Could Be 'a Little Bit Painful,' Says Baker

Molly Bernhart Walker | FierceGovernmentIT | June 6, 2012
As agencies begin to roll out more internal and citizen-facing mobile applications, there will be "a ton of lessons learned," said Roger Baker, chief information officer of the Veterans Affairs Department. "It's going to be a little bit painful occasionally," Baker added June 4 at the Management of Change conference.

According to Baker, VA "got a massive wakeup call" last summer when "doctors released something called the post traumatic stress disorder app on the iTunes store. And let's just say they did it without the assistance of the IT organization."

Mobile apps are requiring CIOs to walk a fine line between mitigating risk and enabling a useful service, said Baker. The app addressed one of the most relevant health concerns facing returning veterans, was downloaded thousands of times within the first few days and has since won several awards. Rather than be a "CI-no," said Baker, he felt it was important to let the app stay on iTunes...