The latest on the Social Security Administration’s IT needs

business and operations, infrastructure, social security administrationBy Kevin Shaker, senior analyst

Finding backend technology opportunities in the government has been tricky in recent years as agencies continue to push their environments toward shared services and Internet-as-a-Service.

However, the Social Security Administration (SSA) is one of the few civilian agencies that’s a viable target in the upcoming fiscal year for companies that offer infrastructure and infrastructure support technologies.

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How government is trying to get a more complete picture

By Mark Wisinger, senior analyst

It’s no secret there’s a vast amount of legacy systems still supporting government customers. Everyone has been talking about interoperability in government for years, but it remains a significant challenge as even more systems being used by agencies age past their initial life expectancy.

But despite the roadblocks, government agencies are working on different ways to enhance information sharing and incentivize interoperability, including using open APIs and architecture.

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3 reasons why 2017 is the year for defense health IT

Lloyd McCoy Jr.dha_012417By Lloyd McCoy Jr., DOD manager

2017 promises to be a pivotal year for the Defense Health Agency and not just because MHS Genesis, the Department of Defense’s replacement electronic health record, starts rolling out next month.

Expect attention to now shift to other priorities on DHA’s plate. I’ve written about several of these drivers recently and in earlier blogs and they are just as applicable today. But a couple of recent policy changes and developments are shaping the future of military health.

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Key Takeaways from DoDIIS Worldwide Conference

Stephanie Meloni_65x85DoDIIS_081016By Stephanie Meloni, Consultant

The intelligence community (IC) isn’t using enough predictive analytics to stay ahead of threats, said senior government leaders at last week’s Department of Defense Intelligence Information Systems Worldwide Conference in Atlanta.

Senior DOD and IC leaders speaking at the conference pointed to several other key IT priorities for enhancing future operations, along with the challenges they face. Data integration and decision making, as well as cyber, were central to their strategies.

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Government to Improve IT Acquisition with Collaboration Tools

Collaboration_KSKevin Shaker_65 x 85by Kevin Shaker, Analyst, Market Intelligence

Lack of transparency and communication is one of the fundamental challenges facing government agencies. DOD struggles the most to communicate effectively between information silos. DOD CIO, Terry Halvorsen recently highlighted this problem as it pertains to the IT acquisition process. Halvorsen stated that too often federal contracting officers are not embedded in groups that deal directly with the programs they support. Therefore, purchase criteria is not always based on sound decisions — the government obtains goods and services that may not be well suited for certain agencies. Sometimes IT officials sitting in the room of acquisition deliberations is not enough — the government needs better alignment between product requirements development and acquisition professionals. Read more of this post

3 Must-knows on Selling IT to the Higher Education Market

Higher Ed SpendingMark Wisinger by Mark Wisinger, Analyst

Educational institutions present a major market for facilities management software providers. Universities and colleges are tasked with maintaining campuses that require seamless facility management 24/7. This presents opportunities for COTs vendors that sell facilities management tools, but in order to tap into these opportunities, you have to understand the key considerations higher-education institutions are taking into account when investing in a software solution:

  1. Familiarity & Relationship Building is Key

Universities prefer to operate with products that are familiar to them. It is common to see an initial deployment of software within one department expand university-wide. This general trend of proof-of-concept small initial deployments is just as prevalent for facilities management software. University of Michigan’s initial expansion of software from its core biomedical facilities to all of its biomedical facilities is a perfect example of the success of scaled deployments. Deploying into a smaller department or office can provide a powerful use-case for the university as a whole. Focus on establishing relationships with a particular department in order to achieve buy-in and a demonstration of capability before pressing for university-wide deployments.
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The Low Down on the New National Strategic Computing Initiative

Tom O'Keefe by Tomas O’Keefe, Consultant

On The Low Down on the New National Strategic Computing InitiativeJuly 29th, President Obama released a new executive order entitled: “Creating a National Strategic Computing Initiative.” This executive order seeks “to maximize benefits of high-performance computing (HPC) research, development, and deployment” for the benefit of not only federal departments but also economic competitiveness and scientific discovery in the United States. The order establishes the National Strategic Computing Initiative (NSCI), an effort to create a cross-agency development strategy for HPC and a way to leverage budget among a multitude of agencies to further scientific success and promote exascale computing.

These are the top five objectives of the National Strategic Computing Initiative:

  1. Accelerating delivery of a capable exascale computing system
  2. Establishing a roadmap for future HPC systems
  3. Developing an enduring public-private collaboration
  4. Increasing coherence between modeling and simulation and data analytic computing technologies
  5. Addressing HPC challenges in networking technology, workflow, downward scaling, foundational algorithms and software, accessibility, and workforce development

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Virginia’s Need for a Uniform Case Management Solution

Mark Wisingerby Mark Wisinger, Analyst

Judicial systemsVirginia’s Need for a Uniform Case Management Solution exemplify the ideal environment for case management software, as legal cases require incident management at various stages in the litigation process — with a multitude of possible outcomes. Legal case data is the perfect example of where analytics can help judicial systems identify typical actions for specific cases, as well as guide policy decisions at the top level. Case management software has the ability to arm and empower judicial systems with management and analytic capabilities, however state governments have underexploited case management tools.

The state of Virginia, for example, has a state-wide case management system for circuit courts, but with limited reach and capability. In terms of reach, the case management system is used in a limited amount of courts, excluding the major circuit courts of Alexandria, Fairfax, and Virginia Beach. Virginia Beach ceased contributing to the system in 2009, opting to employ its own case management system. Alexandria and Fairfax previously implemented their own systems, with their own enhancements.

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3 Areas State & Local Agencies Are Looking to Transform IT and Healthcare Management

Choice health or money. Caduceus and dollar signs on scales.Rachel Eckertby Rachel Eckert, Senior Analyst

In this new resource-constrained environment of “doing more with less,” state and local governments must find ways to increase delivery of Health & Human Services (HHS) to citizens without a corresponding increase to their budget. As state budgets continue to recover from the crippling 2008 recession, HHS agencies – while still holding a dominating share of the budget – are being encouraged to reform their approach to IT and healthcare management.  As such, states are looking to the COTs community to help them transform IT and Healthcare Management in three core areas:
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Next-gen Supercomputing Opportunities at DOE

Tom O'KeefeTomas O’Keefe, Consultant, Market Intelligence

There’sDatacenter been quite a bit going on at the Department of Energy (DOE) in the past few months. Bob Brese left as CIO (Michael Johnson replaced him) and Deputy CIO Donald Adcock left DOE as well. The department released its first ever Quadrennial Energy Review, a blueprint for modernizing the U.S. energy infrastructure. The department’s Joint Cybersecurity Coordination Center (JC3) entered its second year of life, protecting the department’s networks and allowing for safe and secure collaboration among its research communities. DOE also announced they have more than $600M dedicated to piloting and building the next generation of supercomputers.

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