Ebony Thomas is a senior organizational effectiveness specialist who helps our health clients clearly define their priorities and map out how to achieve them. Her work leading change management for the U.S. Department of Defense’s rollout of its electronic health record system helped ensure stakeholders were ready, willing, and able to understand and adopt the new technology.
How is your work making an impact?
My current project is with the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) Transition Assistance Program (TAP). It’s focused on how to provide the greatest value to service members as they transition from active duty. The impact will include improvements to organizational processes that will better enable service members to have access to the tools and resources needed for a seamless return to civilian life.
How do you feel personally connected to this work?
My father is a Vietnam veteran. He thought it was so cool when I told him I was working on TAP. When he retired from a long corporate career that he began after the war and college, he was surprised to learn of all the VA benefits he hadn’t known about and the fact that he could now begin taking advantage of them. We hear the same feedback from veterans today—they aren’t always aware of the benefits available to them—so by continually improving communication, support, and awareness, we can really make a huge difference.
As an architect of the future, what’s your take on what’s next?
I think that as government agencies work to adopt innovative technologies to help them advance their missions, their effectiveness will depend on underlying implementation strategies. They’ll need to think about things like change management, strategic communications, and business process redesign to be successful.