Federal agencies are ramping up their IT modernization activities, incorporating new technologies including Hybrid Cloud, Hyperconverged Infrastructure, and Artificial Intelligence, into their operations to deliver on the mission more effectively and efficiently. However as agencies embrace their digital transformation journey agencies will also want to check that their teams are staffed with the right mix of IT professionals.
While the federal government has a lock on the talent pool of COBOL engineers, younger generations of IT workers skilled at managing systems, creating virtual machines, managing hypervisors, and provisioning storage for all those systems are thin on the ground. Moreover, there are few subject matter experts who know which options to select to fine-tune an installation to optimize performance for an agency’s unique needs.
How can we help federal agencies overcome these circumstantial limitations to maximize their return on investment when they start to purchase new solutions with funds from the Modernizing Government Technology Act (MGT Act)?
Recently, Kenneth Cohen, Consulting Engineer at IronBrick offered up an innovative solution to aid agencies in managing new IT deployments – partnering with a professional services team. One of the many benefits to this type of partnership is that these specialists bring with them both vast expertise in a particular area and a broad perspective, both of which can benefit an in-house IT team that already has a full slate of activities and responsibilities.
As Cohen points out a professional services team “is dedicated to performing tasks that your team doesn’t get to focus on. As a professional services team, we install multiple systems each year. Individually — and as a team — we learn from our experiences, optimizing our processes to make each subsequent installation better than the one before.”
Then there’s the fact that professional services organizations typically have strong relationships with technology vendors, giving them unique access to OEM teams for access to resources, tools, and troubleshooting guidance, which, is particularly valuable when it comes to custom deployments. Which, as Cohen points out results in the fortuitous situation that: “[w]hile we’re doing our job of providing an optimized installation of your new systems, your team is not pulled away from their responsibilities.”
While partnering with professional services hasn’t been commonplace in the federal government, the opportunity presented by the Modernizing Government Technology Act to rapidly transform hardware, software, and operations quickly, suggests that the time is right for federal IT leaders to explore this idea.
Learn more about the value a professional services team brings to complex IT deployments here.