Government Technology: How the 21st Century IDEA Impacts Public & Private Sectors

Historically, December 20 has been a substantial day for the U.S.

1803: The Louisiana Purchase was completed.

1989: President George H.W. Bush authorized the invasion of Panama.

2018: The 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act was signed into law.

While the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA) may not be as well-known as its 1989 and 1803 predecessors, its impact on government trends and government technology is rather substantial.

 

What is it?

IDEA is a newly signed act that will accelerate the adoption of digital transformation and electronic signatures among federal agencies. It requires agencies to offer digital versions of all paper-based services and to accept electronic signatures from citizens. Per the Act, agencies are also mandated to modernize existing websites and create digital options for in-person services, when appropriate.

Under the 21st Century IDEA, these online resources executed through government technology must:

  1. Be accessible to all individuals with disabilities (over 25% of the American adult population)

  2. Have a consistent appearance across agency departments and entities

  3. Not duplicate outdated legacy websites

  4. Have a viable search method

  5. Use an industry standard and secure connection

  6. Be “designed around user needs with data-driven analysis influencing management and development decisions, using qualitative and quantitative data to determine user goals, needs, and behaviors, and continually test the website, web-based form, web-based application, or digital service to ensure that user needs are addressed.” 

  7. Allow end-user customization

  8. Be mobile friendly

 

IDEA also creates a set of minimum functionality and security standards that all federal agency websites and digital services must meet.

 

Why Now?

What government trends propelled the push for agencies to adopt government technology? The same trends and benefits that encourage AssureSign customers to adopt a digital transaction management and eSignature solution:  

  1. Improved performance and efficiency
  2. Less cost and time
  3. More business, faster

For franchises like Tropical Smoothie Café, AssureSign removes the need for manual oversight between franchisers and franchisees. Not only did they adopt the only eSignature technology that adjusts to federal franchising rules, Tropical Smoothie eliminated the hefty price tag of an outdated ‘print, send, receive, scan and store’ process.

 

 

What’s Next?

The legislation encourages federal agencies to integrate with a webform-based platform, similar to how Junior Achievement of Kansas City used AssureSign to create a webform experience for its volunteers.

Like JA of Kansas City, federal agencies will have digital access to the documents and can digitally retain their audit trails for the duration required. What’s more, volunteers of JA Kansas City can view necessary disclosures and sign required forms without ever leaving the webpage!

The 21st Century IDEA also calls for the user’s experience to be mobile friendly upon rollout in 2021. This provision is wise, as internet traffic sourcing from internet-enabled mobile devices has surpassed that of desktops/laptops. In fact, it’s for this reason that Captorra began using AssureSign’s eSign via Text Msg feature—the only electronic signature via SMS function native to an eSignature solution.

“Providing the electronic signature process on a consumer’s smartphone is invaluable,” said Chris O’Brien, President & CEO of Captorra. “Over 60 percent of our own deals are closed with AssureSign’s text to eSign feature. Both our customers and my own sales team agree… mobile eSign determines whether deals are won or lost.”

 

Learn more about how public agencies and private businesses meet federal mandates while garnering more business with AssureSign. Contact us today!