One Year Out of DISA’s Reorg – Five C’s Still Shaping IT Priorities Part I

DISA_220x100Lloyd McCoy Jr.by Lloyd McCoy Jr., DOD Manager

We’re a year removed from DISA’s reorganization — a restructuring largely aimed at giving the agency the flexibility and responsiveness it needs to effectively engage with industry and its primary customer: the Department of Defense (DOD). No different than before, DISA’s IT priorities are shaped by what they call the “five c’s”: cybersecurity, cloud, collaboration, and C2 (command and control). These priorities are influenced by the Joint Information Environment’s (JIE) emphasis on infrastructure consolidation, information sharing, and shared services.

Here’s what you need to know about the five c’s and the opportunities they bring to IT vendors:

  1. Cybersecurity
    DISA’s goal is to remove vulnerability from DOD’s network. The agency is heavily invested in bringing situational awareness to network defenders, through consolidating security stacks, marrying together big data, analytics and cybersecurity, and investing in tools to secure DOD’s network. If a breach does occur, DISA is looking for solutions that will limit the lateral movement of attackers within the network. Cybersecurity vendors should note that DISA is also looking to inject more automation in security and have specifically called out automated compliance, scanning and monitoring as areas where they want to improve.
  1. Cloud
    DISA is no longer brokering cloud purchases for DOD, but they are still in charge of setting cloud security standards — so it’s important to show that you are on top of the security requirements they publish and of course, can meet their standards. DISA also develops and designs Cloud Access Points that information coming from a commercial cloud environment has to go through before reaching DOD’s internal networks. It’s beneficial for vendors selling commercial cloud solutions to DOD to know what the Cloud Access Points look like and be prepared to customize solutions accordingly.
  1. Collaboration
    DISA has been a vocal proponent of expanding Unified Capabilities throughout DOD — a term for taking collaboration tools and providing them over the internet, making it easier for DOD users to communicate using voice, video, and data. DISA maintains the Approved Product List for Unified Capabilities. This is a good opportunity for solution providers that specialize in real-time data sharing, speech recognition, VOIP and any form of collaboration technology.
  1. Command and Control (C2)
    One of DISA’s many roles is acting as the enterprise service provider of command and control systems for combat units to use. This is one of the most tangible ways DISA provides support to the warfighter. A survey of upcoming contracts, budget documents, and strategic plans all point toward a trend among C2 systems toward open architectures, greater visualization and analytics, and of course, security.

In your outreach to DISA IT decision makers, it’s important to keep in mind that DISA is focused on creating a global infrastructure for DOD. This infrastructure will feature robust and layered security, IP-based collaboration services, tools that give military commanders the situational awareness and visibility on the battlefield, and private and commercial clouds that host data securely. All of these priorities, “the five c’s,” aim to fully bring to pass the ultimate vision of the Joint Information Environment.

Want to Learn More About DISA? Watch DISA Sales Opportunities Webinar On Demand!

Get the information you need to make your sales efforts more effective within DISA as I explore DISA’s major IT initiatives, top funded FY16 programs, organizational structure, IT decision makers, and more in this information-packed Webinar. Watch Webinar Now

Also – check back next week for Part II of this blog post.

About Lloyd McCoy Jr.
Lloyd McCoy is the Department of Defense Consultant on the Market Intelligence team. Prior to working for immixGroup, he worked in the public sector as a senior analyst with the Defense Department. Lloyd primarily monitors and analyzes issues relating to the Navy/Marine Corps, Defense Health Agency, and the Defense Information Systems Agency

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