Saying Goodbye to a Career of Federal Service

Posted by Kay Ely
on October 1, 2018

I recently announced I’m winding down my career with the federal government.  Retirement is a great time for reflection as I approach the end of one chapter and the beginning of the next.

After 32 years of service in the government and private sectors, I have been fortunate to work beside people whose passion is to serve in the best interests of our customers. I leave my position as Assistant Commissioner of the Office of Information Technology Category (ITC) filled with pride from what we have accomplished and confidence in the excellent ITC staff.

But none of ITC’s projects and programs would be successful without the partnership, support, perspective, and engagement of our federal agency and industry partners.

I have talked often about ITC’s many successes to illustrate that the work ITC does has significant, real-world impacts — we manage more than 5,000 contracts, representing nearly $25 billion in mission-critical IT spending annually.

Our goal is to meet all agencies’ IT needs by giving them access to the best commercial products and services available, from laptop configurations to massive IT network overhauls and everything in between.

We’re always focused on how the market is changing, and which emerging technologies are becoming critical in the modern IT landscape.

This year, ITC launched initiatives aimed at modernizing and simplifying current solutions, eliminating duplicative processes, and deploying emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and distributed ledger technology (DLT), to enhance efficiencies and drive savings into the acquisition process for GSA and government.

During my tenure as Director of IT Schedule 70, we focused on cross-government and cross-industry collaboration, realigning ITC to better support industry partners and help customer agencies meet their mission objectives.

One such example is the FASt Lane program, which focused on getting new technologies into the hands of customers faster. It has two parts: a quick 48 hour e-Modification (eMod) process for current Schedule 70 contract holders wishing to add or update their current IT product offerings, and a program helps get new vendors on schedule in approximately 45 days, down from the average time of 110 days.

We also implemented an initiative to renegotiate Schedule 70 base prices for many of the largest contracts. As a result, the government is achieving discounts of up to 46 percent off original pricing.

The solutions that we have put in place are truly critical to enabling the government to do its ultimate job — serving the American taxpayers.

I look forward to following GSA’s and ITC’s future endeavors and celebrating their successes from a new vantage point.
Many thanks to this entire community for your tremendous partnership over the years.

Please follow us on Twitter @GSA_ITC and LinkedIn to join our ongoing conversations about government IT.

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Success through Collaboration

Posted by Ed O’Hare
on May 12, 2010

As you may know, May 23rd marks the opening of the Management of Change (MOC) conference. For 30 years, the MOC has served as a catalyst for collaboration across the government IT community. I am proud to be a conference vice chair on this year’s planning committee.

Even before wikis, blogs and tweets, the MOC conference was a focal point for IT professionals from all levels of government and industry to connect, share information, and work together to drive innovation. Not too long ago we were debating the merits of allowing government employees to access the Internet. Today Internet access is commonplace across government – that’s change at lightning speed. We’ve all had to adapt, and I’m proud of the role GSA has played in the provision of this service.

With the emergence of new knowledge-sharing and social media tools, we have all changed the manner in which we communicate, as well as the frequency. The MOC conference goal, however, remains unchanged: to assemble a group of experts to address the government’s most pressing IT challenges and share best practices, which lead to success through collaboration.

This year’s panel topics align with some of the most critical issues we as IT professionals face – increasing the quality and focus of our engagement efforts, achieving operational excellence, and addressing critical issues such as cybersecurity. Perhaps getting a group of people in a room to talk is considered low-tech. But I, for one, am looking forward to hearing what our industry partners and customers have to say and how my organization ITS can tap into this collective intelligence to develop forward-looking solutions.

To quote the late, great technologist Yogi Berra, “the future ain’t what it used to be.” Change happens – technologies change, workforces change, policies change, and our challenges change. We’ve got to learn how to manage change, get ahead of it and anticipate it. We can only do that with an open exchange of ideas.

If you haven’t signed up yet, you can find out more information here. I will look forward to seeing you there.

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