CIO sells scalability of cloud to transform Ohio housing authority

Spread the love

Selling scalability of cloud

So his No. 1 task shifted. Instead of focusing on new initiatives first, Patterson sought to rip out the old on-premises servers and systems and replace them with cloud-based options that would allow him to take on that greater goal: leveraging technology to enable the authority to perform its core mission of serving its community more rapidly and efficiently.

“The way we sold it is that it will benefit our agency and the community and it will be our new foundation that in the long run lowers risks and provides greater capability and greater availability to the community,” said Patterson, who became the acting CIO on Aug. 1.

Craig PattersonCraig Patterson

The Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority (LMHA) owns 2,709 housing units, oversees 4,663 housing vouchers and serves 17,000 individuals in the city of Toledo and Lucas County, Ohio.

Patterson, who comes to the authority from his Texas-based management consulting firm Patterson Associates, where he remains president and CEO, had worked with LMHA on its strategic plans several years ago, so he said he was aware of its tech issues when he took on the lead IT position in early 2015.

“They needed to upgrade, and there was no alternative,” he said. His dire assessment got the authority’s executives and its board of commissioners to back him and provide the necessarily funding.

But Patterson didn’t just sell his higher-ups on footing the bill for upgrades, which totaled around $250K. As part of his proposal, he sold them on moving to the cloud. Moving to the cloud would get LMHA out of the hardware business while providing more reliable business continuity at significantly lower costs, he argued. The scalability of cloud would also give the agency the flexibility to expand and pull back community services as needed.