State of California

This is how we work

Alpha.CA.gov operational principles
Alpha.CA.gov operational principles

Our operational principles guide how our team works.

They reflect our collaborative culture. And they inform our priority setting and decision making. These principles will inform our day-to-day work and big-picture planning.

Continuing our practice of building on what’s been tried and proven before, we’ve adopted and adapted the U.S. Digital Service principles.

We’ve made one adaptation. We added “Emphasize collaboration across teams” because collaboration is central and essential to our work.

This is how the Alpha Team works:

  • Default to open
  • Understand what people need
  • Use data to drive decisions
  • Address the whole experience, from start to finish
  • Make it simple and intuitive
  • Build the service using agile and iterative practices
  • Assign one leader and hold that person accountable
  • Bring in experienced teams
  • Emphasize collaboration across teams
  • Structure budgets and contracts to support delivery
  • Choose a modern technology stack
  • Deploy in a flexible hosting environment
  • Automate testing and deployments
  • Manage security and privacy through reusable processes

We’ll continue to iterate and refine these principles as we learn by doing.

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