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GCN : October and November 2016
GCN OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2016 • GCN.COM 55 managed shared services. WIPS came together so quickly not just because of the technology (or the loom- ing deadline), but because it was built using agile develop- ment and a modular frame- work that can address the requirements of the various program offices. — Amanda Ziadeh A ‘complete 180’ for Louisiana The state Department of Health’s IT consolidation focuses on delivering solutions, not technology, to customers The Louisiana Department of Health wanted to modernize its siloed, outdated Medicaid eligibility and enrollment sys- tems — a problem many state agencies grapple with. The IT consolidation and enterprise architecture solution Louisi- ana officials came up with is less common, however. It delivered a scalable, shared hardware that can be supported in the cloud and a set of services against which applications can be developed and replicated beyond the department. It’s a “complete 180” in terms of the state’s approach, Louisiana CTO Michael Al- lison said. “Instead of being technology-driven, it’s now service-oriented. We’re look- ing at the service delivery and how we can support the ser- vice of eligibility rather than what the technology is.” Major components include an on-premises software- defined data center that hosts all the project’s shared servic- es; Nutanix’s hyperconverged technology; and network services that are incorpo- rated into the virtual fabric with VMware’s NSX network virtualization platform, ESXi hypervisor and Site Recovery Manager. Matthew Vince, director of project management at the state’s Office of Technology Services, said the solution al- lows one group of data center engineers to manage all the components that multiple groups used to oversee. As a result, the department has consolidated networking, computing and storage; in- creased availability; improved disaster recovery; and set the example for modernization at other agencies as part of a statewide IT consolidation effort. The solution also saves tens of millions of dollars a year. “This really allows us to quit selling technology to the customers and start selling solutions,” Louisiana Deputy CIO Neal Underwood said. “They see what they get out of it rather than the technol- ogy itself.” — Stephanie Kanowitz The State Department’s new cloud- based service management system allows diplomats, their family members and other government agencies to request more than 135 services, including IT support After years of trying, the State Depart- ment has replaced eServices, its outdated workflow system for requesting and fulfill- ing services at about 285 overseas posts. The department turned to cloud com- puting company ServiceNow to create myServices, through which diplomats, their family members and other govern- ment agencies can request more than 135 services, including IT support. When fully deployed, myServices will support more than 100,000 federal employees and their families at 40 federal agencies and contractors. MyServices got its start as a pilot proj- ect in 2014 in San Jose, Costa Rica, where it doubled the number of requests that could come in from 250 customers in eight weeks. The global rollout began in Febru- ary, and since then, myServices has fielded more than 190,000 requests from 20,000 customers. The application is live at 70 posts and on track to be fully deployed by the end of fiscal 2017. Using an agile development approach, the department has had 22 releases since the pilot test, and it has implemented 140 enhancements. Melissa Johnson, director of logistics systems at the State Department, led the myServices charge and in the process helped set the department’s accredita- tion and approval process for cloud-based technologies. She worked with Service- Now and the General Services Administra- tion to get Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program approval for the solution, a key requirement for deploying myServices. The department expects to save about $150 million through fiscal 2018 using my- Services, specifically because the cloud- based solution eliminates local servers. Technical support has been centralized to a round-the-clock help desk, data quality and readiness have been improved, and there is greater visibility into the status of requests. Additionally, response time is faster because requests can be reassigned among providers and there are fewer data- entry requirements. — Stephanie Kanowitz STATE SPINS UP CLOUD-BASED SERVICE REQUESTS FOR DIPLOMATS ABROAD 1116gcn_032-055.indd 55 10/6/16 10:25 AM
August and September 2016
January and February 2017