A local company that is taking advantage of federal tech testing programs also got a boost from last week’s GTEC conference in its bid to spread its form-streamlining software throughout the federal government.
Through an initiative called Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP), FormVerse was able to have its product beta-tested by the federal government before going to market while also being paid by the public sector.
Guy de Montigny, director of business development at FormVerse, said the product was testing “super good” in the branches where FormVerse was integrated. But there was one problem: FormVerse wanted to expand to all the branches of government and have them as a client, not just a tester.
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Through GTEC, FormVerse’s members were able to meet with the CIOs and technical support staff from various federal boards to discuss how best to integrate into the government’s system.
FormVerse was then awarded a contract under the Software Licensing Supply Arrangement that enables all departments of the federal government to easily license the firm’s workflow automation tools.
FormVerse has also partnered with Calian, a technology consulting firm.
“One change that GTEC is putting a huge emphasis on is government-to-business,” said GTEC executive director Michele Lajeunesse.
“Governments are looking for projects in 2016 and the latter part of this year. This year afforded our businesses the ability to get on the radar as a new government comes into power.”
Though organizers have not released the breakdown of attendance figures for this year’s GTEC, which was held last week at the Shaw Centre, 67 per cent of those who attended last year’s conference were government workers. This year’s conference had about the same number of advance registrants, but actual attendance dropped slightly, which Ms. Lajeunesse attributed to the Jays’ playoff run and the federal election.
Mr. de Montigny believes the wealth of government workers is one of the best features of GTEC.
“There’s no road map to integrate in the entire (government),” he said, adding GTEC provides that avenue.
What was new at GTEC 2015: A security zone designed for people who are “not aware of the tech scene but really want to get a handle on what are the offers in (tech security for their businesses).”
What sets it apart from other conferences: “The agnostic environment with our audience. Good place for people to go and not feel they’re walking in under the banner of (a single) vendor.”
What to expect next year: An innovation zone to showcase startups and a focus on cloud and the internet of things (IoT). “Getting beyond the idea that IoT is only about smart cars and smart fridges . . . what are Canadian companies doing in the IoT space that is going to impact public sector jurisdictions?”
All quotes by – Michelle Lajeunesse, GTEC executive director