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Bryan Sivak Seeks to Modernize Public Services Through HHS Innovation Lab

Bryan SivakBryan Sivak, designated chief innovator at the Department of Health and Human Services, said his task is to come up with unconventional ways to deliver “modern” and “effective” services to the public.

“When you look across HHS, we have approximately 90,000 full-time employees and then contractors,” the agency’s chief technology officer told Steven Overly in a Monday story for the Washington Post.

“These people are highly intelligent and motivated for the right reasons, but in many cases the bureaucracy prevents them from executing on things in innovative and modern ways,” he added.

Sivak said he works to give people an environment where they are free to experiment, make mistakes, learn from them and take action on plans.

“Too much time is spent in government thinking about having a meeting or planning to have a plan,” he said.

“We would much rather just try stuff.”

He also is in charge of HHS’ IDEA Lab, which operates behind an assumption that any individual has the power to improve the health of others, that working together produces better results and that every problem has a solution.

“The main reason we did it is because if you want something to sustain in a bureaucracy, you have to make it part of the bureaucracy to begin with,” he said.

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