When was the last time you woke up and thought, "I hope my agency changes the way it does IT today"? Change is often the result of outside forces, including technology advancements, government initiatives and resource challenges. Reinventing technology for the sake of innovation certainly happens, but more often, change is a necessity, not a choice. Fortunately, in the hands of federal IT professionals, change can be a good thing.
Case in point: Microsoft Windows. Wholesale change of a computing platform is no small undertaking. But as the article How Agencies Are Migrating Away from Windows XP details, agencies have been forced to rethink their operating system of choice — desktop and mobile — given the pending retirement of the popular Windows XP OS. In this case, change has allowed agencies to re-examine the way users compute. Do mobile systems make more sense? How about virtual desktops? And do they really need all those XP applications they've been running for years?
The administration's Cloud First and Federal IT Shared Services initiatives represent change handed down to agencies from within government. Both are having a positive effect on the way agencies acquire technology solutions, as you can read in the feature How Agencies Are Becoming Their Own Cloud Providers. And when you appreciate the significant change required of the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative, you understand why some IT professionals are gravitating toward a new generation of storage solutions, as described in Smarter Storage.
Finally, there's the change that agencies undertake because it represents a better way of working. Think video conferencing in order to reduce travel and workplace redesign to encourage collaboration. And if you're not convinced that telework signifies change for the better, Rebecca S. Ayers, from the Office of Personnel Management, breaks down the benefits.
A Different Change
While we're on the subject, FedTech also is experiencing change. Matt McLaughlin's interview with Douglas Wiltsie, program executive officer for Army Enterprise Information Systems, will be his last as managing editor of FedTech as he takes on a new role with our content team. While you may still see Matt's name in these pages as a contributor from time to time, new Managing Editor Brad Grimes will assume everyday management of FedTech. If your agency is experiencing the positive change that technology enables, Brad wants to know. Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.