Efforts to Improve User Experiences at Federal Government Agencies

Processes developed to facilitate government entities serving the people tend to be significantly different from those designed to generate profit in commercial business. While requirements and limitations must still be observed, the time has come for the Federal Government to provide Americans with a user experience that mirrors that of the private sector.

This goal is outlined in the President’s Management Agenda (PMA), which is “a long-term vision for modernizing the Federal Government in key areas that will improve the ability of agencies to deliver mission outcomes, provide excellent service, and effectively steward taxpayer dollars on behalf of the American people.”

For many agencies, reaching this goal necessitates investments in information technology (IT) and implementation of cloud-based solutions. One year has passed since the PMA was issued. Where is your agency with its IT modernization efforts? The following examples of progress being made toward this goal may provide you with ideas as you move forward.

Department of Defense

The Department of Defense (DoD) has partnered with the General Services Administration (GSA) to create a comprehensive cloud service known as Defense Enterprise Office Solution (DEOS) consisting of enterprise productivity suite, messaging, content management, and collaboration services with stringent security requirements.

Although the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) usually manages all aspects of the DoD projects, DEOS is utilizing GSA’s Schedule 70 vehicle while DISA handles the implementation and deployment. This $8 billion, five- to ten-year blanket purchase agreement (BPA) is expected to be awarded summer 2019, and the initial tasks are expected to be initiated in FY 2020-2022. DEOS is the first of three phases of the Defense Department’s Enterprise Collaboration and Productivity Services (ECAPS).

Social Security Administration

As part of the agency’s cloud initiative, the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) Office of Systems Operations and Hardware Engineering (OSOHE) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) for a suite of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) software tools to manage and enhance its diverse multi-hybrid cloud hosting environments.

SSA is seeking a solution that provides visibility and management of resources across several cloud providers, multitenancy with granular role-based access control, services catalog, self-provisioning portal, aggregated showback, orchestration/automation capable of calling Ansible playbooks for cloud resource builds, integration with several service management (ITSM), asset management (ITAM) and configuration database (CMDB) products and various monitoring tools.

Department of Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued an RFI in February 2019 for a ten-year, potentially $1-2 billion, enterprise-wide multi-cloud computing initiative that will involve consolidating two main enterprise computing data centers, modernizing its technology infrastructure, and improving cybersecurity.

One of the challenges of this project is the requirement that all impacted departments – Customs and Border Protection, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Transportation Security Administration, and DHS headquarters – maintain full operational capability of all applications and services during the migration process. The timing of this development is crucial because the DHS Data Center 2 contract expires in June of 2020.

Department of Homeland Security

Like many other organizations, DoD, SSA, and DHS are moving forward to meet the Cross-Agency Priority (CAP) goal outlined in the PMA: Modernize IT to Increase Productivity and Security. Good news! According to the quarterly update issued June 2019, progress is being made in cloud email adoption and cybersecurity. Which begs the question, will the Federal workforce be ready for these newly-modernized IT systems?

Management Concepts helps Federal Government organizations realign human capital to serve America’s priorities. We are here to help you Develop a Workforce for the 21st Century with numerous IT-focused training opportunities as you prepare your workforce to achieve the goals set out in the PMA.

Written by:
Natalie Komitsky
Acquisition & Contracting



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