Too often we hear stories about how the Federal government, for one reason or another, lacks technological capabilities that are commonplace in the private sector and our everyday lives. For example, when this Administration first came into office employees at the Department of the Interior couldn’t even send a department-wide message due to its siloed infrastructure, which consists of 210 data centers and 9,000 servers.
This week, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar signed Secretarial Order #3309, outlining the steps that the Department will take to align IT resources under the Chief Information Officer. The Secretarial Order sets in motion Interior’s IT Transformation, consistent with the 25 Point Implementation Plan to Reform Federal IT Management. The Secretary is committed “to transform DOI’s IT into an agile, reliable, and cost effective service” that better supports DOI’s mission.
Interior’s IT Transformation takes a customer-centric approach to IT service delivery, with a focus on:
- Improved customer service through a new consolidated customer care center
- Cost savings funneled back to investments and services that help accomplish the mission
- Flexibility for employees and managers to choose mobile technologies that meet their needs in a secure manner
- One email system delivered through cloud computing for the entire agency with enhanced features
This self-funded effort is projected to save the Department $100 million each year from 2016 to 2020, for a cumulative total of $500 million in IT savings to support valuable mission and program functions. More importantly, this Secretarial Order removes the structural barriers that get in the way of consistent execution when it comes to managing achieving operational efficiency and managing large scale IT projects.
Vivek Kundra is the U.S. Chief Information Officer