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May 20, 2015

IT Solutions Challenge 2015 Expert Panel Feedback - Inez Maguire

By Inez Maguire


Team ONE was born on April 9, 2015 at the end of a long day of brainstorming ideas around government-wide IT and IT acquisition problems. After much wrangling, our team’s initial problem statement revolved around the overarching need for federal agency standardization in the areas of processes, applications, and data.

In that vein, further team discussion led to the possible solution of creating One Networked Enterprise (ONE): one computer network all federal agencies could access. The hope was through this ONE network, information and data could be shared, applications streamlined, process and protocols aligned. ONE would assist creation of a more digital, collaborative, and open government…ONE united to improve public service. In order to make this system a reality, we choose to make our initial focus on government-wide metadata standardization.

The problem itself was easy to define. Lack of standardization in many arenas is a well-known problem, especially given so many diverse federal agency missions. One particular difficulty confronted was the numerous interagency policy agreements required to overcome the standardization problem. Another was the problem’s enormity.

At our second ITSC meeting, on April 29, we were fortunate to meet with several subject matter experts. Their first-hand knowledge of current government initiatives turned the light on the solution path we were walking. We quickly realized that the scope of our problem was too broad, given the IT Solution Challenge’s six-month time constraint.

At the April 29 meeting, our team concluded the day by narrowing our initial problem. We are now working to identify ways to reduce the effort needed to conduct contractor suitability checks across the Federal Government and accelerate contractor onboarding consistent with the latest Suitability and Security Processes Review Report to the President.

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