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Judi Dotson, president of Booz Allen's national security sector, spoke with Washington Technology editor Nick Wakeman and a panel of experts about the evolving role of the systems integrator. From the emerging technology revolution to adapting the workforce to COVID-19, she shared insights from her more than 30 years at the firm and thoughts on how industry continues to adapt to client needs.
For Booz Allen, success is about getting to the core of the client mission.
When we launched the firm’s Vision 2020 corporate growth strategy, we focused on a set of key transformations that included moving closer to the center of our clients’ core missions; increasing the technical content of our work; leveraging innovation to deliver complex, differentiated, end-to-end solutions; and attracting and retaining superior talent in diverse areas of expertise. It was a significant strategic realignment from our business at that time and has been a journey that positioned us well for the market today. It required a significant shift in our workforce, but it reinvigorated our purpose and values as a firm, and it brought us closer to where our clients’ needs are today.
We know the pace of change is going to accelerate and the introduction of new technologies will continue to happen quickly. We continue to evolve our strategy and prepare for what's next around things like artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, quantum, and other new technologies because that’s what clients need, and where we can deliver exceptional value.
Technology innovation continues to be the biggest driver of change for clients—and industry must continue to evolve.
Booz Allen has adapted quite a bit over 106 years, but today, our biggest driver is the demand for innovation. Technology is at the center of clients’ missions and ours, and as we look at the future, we do not see technology as a set of tools—we see it as our world. Technology is driving change across every industry and driving innovation to the advancement of society.
In national security and across our business, Booz Allen is ideally positioned to help the government embrace the digital domain as we straddle both traditional government and emerging technology. Our position at the intersection of technology, innovation, and mission is unique. We’re a major capability provider without the constraints—agile and adaptive—with the ability to deliver solutions at scale and speed, it’s important to be continually evolving to meet and exceed the pace of change around us.
Commercial organizations are changing the game for everyone.
As nontraditional players have started coming into the market as primes, it has provided an opportunity for us to think about how we can add more value—whether that’s as a strong technical partner or as an organization that can help maximize the value of commercial technology to drive adoption and mission success for government clients.
Ultimately, we see the rapid pace of change for emerging technologies not as a revolution, but an evolution—we’re focused on continually accelerating the adoption and implementation of new technologies. Our work incubating strategic innovations is highly focused on emerging technologies like cyber, AI, and digital transformation through cloud, blockchain, and others. We continue to expand our tech ecosystem through tech scouting and strategic partnerships to partner with commercial organizations, and our Solutions business has launched multiple products based on where we see needs in the market. As new organizations and technologies enter the market, our role and our business models will evolve, and we’ll continue to adapt.
COVID-19 will shape the workforce and our future.
While we’re still waiting to understand the long-term impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, we already know it has accelerated the need for tech solutions and innovation—there is a transformation happening now that will only continue. There is still a need for mission-critical solutions, and we need to work closely with our clients as agencies realign priorities to accommodate critical needs in areas like health, benefits delivery, cybersecurity, and accelerated tech modernization to meet the most essential needs. This is a team effort—as we say at Booz Allen, “we’re in it together”—and we remain focused on delivering critical solutions at scale and speed.
Learn more about our integrated expertise for national security agencies here.