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VA hires IT client advocates

The Veterans Affairs Department's Office of Information and Technology has added three customer service advocates to deal with agencies in VA and hired two other IT experts.

Assigning customer advocates replicates a best practice from the corporate world to ensure that VA’s benefits, health care and corporate units are satisfied with the service they receive from the IT department, Roger Baker, VA's CIO and assistant secretary for information and technology, told reporters Nov. 17.

“They will be addressing all the hot issues before they get really hot,” Baker said. The chief issue is whether the IT unit is doing everything to meet the needs of its internal clients, he added.

Baker said the advocates serve as his representatives and do not have independent authority. “I carry the stick,” he said. “Their authority flows from me.”

Stan Lowe is the new customer advocate on behalf of the Veterans Benefits Administration, Charles Hume is in the same position for the Veterans Health Administration, and Jacquelyn Patillo is the advocate for VA’s corporate units and secretary’s office.

Jerry Davis has been hired as deputy assistant secretary for information security, and Tina Burnette is executive director of enterprise risk management.

Posted by Alice Lipowicz on Nov 18, 2010 at 7:20 PM


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