Managed Mobility: Game On

Think of GSA’s Managed Mobility Program as having two VIP players working together to give government a slam dunk when it comes to increased access to cost-effective wireless devices and services and enterprise-wide mobility, data, and applications management.

The two key players are Managed Mobility and FSSI Wireless. You’ve heard a lot about FSSI Wireless’s steady progress and what immense value it will bring to government.

GSA’s Managed Mobility Program promises the same benefits.

First though, for those of you who have been glued to your television for “March Madness,” I want to thank you for tearing yourself away for a few minutes to read this blog!  But in case I lose you before you finish reading, let me make this one quick point:  While you are zombie-eyed watching the college basketball championships this month and knee deep in stats, brackets, and upsets, GSA and our cross-government Managed Mobility working group partners are busy evaluating responses due March 8th to our Request for Technical Capabilities, so that over the next month we can deliver a managed mobility win for government.

Blending Mobile into Enterprise-Wide IT
The challenge: Managed mobility is an emerging need of the federal government as our workforces and users increasingly demand mobile access and applications. Allowing agencies to better and more cohesively manage all aspects of mobile devices is a priority. This means everything from managing acquisition, configuration, and provisioning to security, finding lost devices, and remotely enabling and disabling features, to final disposal and disposition. Getting every agency’s mobile assets and applications seamlessly blended into the enterprise-wide IT effort is an ultimate goal.

Our Road to Win
Last May as college basketball teams across the nation started to plan and train for the upcoming season, the White House released its Digital Government Strategy. DGS #5.5 directed GSA to “set up a government-wide Mobile Device Management Platform.” Centralizing requirements gathering and solution evaluation reduces the burden on agencies while increasing their options’ quality and reducing cost government-wide.

GSA took the ball, did its homework, and teamed up with partners in DHS, DOJ, DISA, USDA, the White House Communications Agency, and other security, policy, and IT experts in industry and government.

Our next challenge was to make a game plan. The Managed Mobility Team recognized the managed mobility space is fast-moving and always changing, a bit like college basketball, so we needed a winning strategy. We initially developed a set of sought and desired Mobile Device Management (MDM) and Mobile Application Management (MAM) capabilities.

Secondly, we knew there were managed mobility solutions already available on existing, easily accessible contract vehicles. We wanted to leverage these resources rather than initially set out to build a new franchise from the ground up. The benefits of this game plan are faster, easier access to existing solutions without significant initial dollar investment as the emerging market continues to change.

Today, GSA and our partners are evaluating responses to our RFTC to identify solutions already available and opportunities to create new IDIQs and Schedule 70 BPAs if it makes sense. We will create a central repository so stakeholders can quickly find and scan solutions with links to contract vehicles and directions to acquire each one.  In addition, we will track and share best practices, and implement strategies and mechanisms for the Managed Mobility Program to grow, evolve, improve, and respond to changes in mobile technology, policy, and requirements.

Beating the Time Clock
GSA takes our Digital Strategy Directive #5.5 seriously. Working with our government and industry partners, we will identify the GSA managed mobility toolset and make our central repository available to agencies ahead of the DGS deadline of May 23, 2013. When we launch our repository, government agencies will be able to access managed mobility solutions seamlessly in an easy-to-use, secure, integrated solution. At that point, we will prepare for the next game in the tournament, responding to the evolving MDM commercial market and the needs of our federal customers.

So, you’ve made it to the end, thanks for sticking around to the final buzzer. Now, you have a clear understanding of GSA’s Managed Mobility Program strategy and updates, what progress we’ve made, and what you can look forward to.

Please share comments or additional ideas in the comments section below or follow us on Twitter @GSA_ITS to join the conversation.

Good To Be Back to ITS….And The Better For It!

Serving GSA as the acting commissioner for the Federal Acquisition Service during the latter part of 2012 was an exhilarating ride. It provided a lens into just how important our role is in–and to–the government at all levels: federal, state and local.

I learned about and participated in a variety of initiatives and issues across GSA and many of our customer agencies. Whether it’s providing emergency support during weather emergencies like Hurricane Sandy or helping agencies consolidate space, GSA is fully dedicated to building a stronger, more sustainable government by delivering the best value and savings through partnerships and innovation.

With this new experience, I hope to better serve our customers and save the government money, especially as we deal with critical issues like sequestration, continuing resolutions, and tighter budgets. ITS, FAS, and GSA will play a vital role in helping move our government forward; we must help agencies make the best decisions possible.

I want to thank Kevin Youel Page, the Deputy Assistant Commissioner for ITS,  for keeping us on track while I was gone as we helped the government move towards areas like strategic sourcing for wireless services and devices, pick up the pace on cloud computing adoption, and launch new IT Commodity BPAs that can help save taxpayer and agency dollars.

It’s great to be back at ITS.  I return invigorated and continually dedicated to our customers. Armed with a greater knowledge, I am confident ITS can support government needs, deliver efficient operations, drive world-class value, and be recognized as agile and innovative.

I look forward to working with all of you to help us reach these goals.  Please come back next week….. as I plan to post some thoughts on managed mobility.

Have suggestions on how GSA can help you? Please share your ideas and comment below!