Federal government agencies continue to struggle with effectively managing the mountains of data that they collect and store. Just because that data is captured ‘somewhere’ does not mean that the data is visible, available or in a usable format to help agencies better serve their constituents. However, public sector agencies are getting “data ready,” to achieve some amazing things – like roll out a smart city project or seamlessly transition their entire team to the cloud. Synchronizing across our Federal and State agencies to be able to respond to the current crisis to deliver the CARES act unemployment payments is but one example that we still have a way to go.
You’re probably asking, “What does it mean to be ‘data ready’?” It means being able to put your data to work in any scenario you encounter, thanks to the power of sophisticated data management technologies. Natural disaster approaching and potentially endangering your agency’s on-prem data storage? Not a problem. Global pandemic calling for social distancing and the need to work remotely? It’s taken care of. Ransomware attacks infiltrating organizations around the world and endangering your data security? Not for you – you’re data ready.
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By investing in technologies that enable it to be data ready, a government agency is able maximize the power of its data and work that much more effectively to serve the public. It can deliver on its critical mission services, regardless of situation, because its data is accessible and visible and understandable by its team and by the public that need it to manage their responsibilities to government regulations – get your driver’s license or passport, pay your taxes, register your new car, etc. and do it 24/7 because “data ready” organizations have not only virtualized these activities, but they have ensured they are safe and secure.
“It’s important to remember being data ready is not just about implementing a cure-all solution,” shared Richard Breakiron, Commvault’s Senior Director, Strategic Initiatives, Americas Public Sector – Federal, in a recent discussion with Government Technology Insider. “Leaders must assess their operational gaps and then make sure they get people with the right skillsets, that they tested response processes during both business normal and ‘new normal’ times, and they must realize the value of best-of-breed technology to properly equip a government agency with the right information, at the right time, in a readable format, regardless of their location.”
David DeVries, who leads Strategic Initiatives for State, Local Government and Higher Education Industries for Commvault, built on that sentiment in our discussion, stating that agencies are actively looking for ways to simplify their data management and improve their data security, especially as new challenges arise because of COVID-19. “By implementing a holistic data management approach that accommodate their mission priorities allow government agencies to evolve and adapt as needed during times like these so they can continue serving the public effectively. That perfectly captures the benefits of being data ready.”
The importance of data readiness is only growing as the lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic become more apparent. It’s crucial that government agencies learn from this moment in history and apply that knowledge to their data management strategies moving forward.