Playing a Part in Transforming Federal IT

The underlying foundation for developing quality software applications in the government sector

The White House recently convened with 17 high-profile tech leaders to discuss ways to “transform and modernize” federal IT. The “American Technology Council,” aims to push government IT into the modern era with issues like cybersecurity as a top priority. The leader of the council, Jared Kushner, says government IT is outdated—some federal systems are 39 to 56 years old and that in some instances, the Department of Defense still uses floppy disks.

Many of us have noticed the differences between digital experiences with private companies vs. government bodies. Kushner says, “Americans deserve to receive the same level of digital services from the government that they receive in the private sector.” Is this an overly ambitious goal for organizations that have so many regulations and so much red tape inhibiting change? Will government innovation ever equal that of the private sector?

These are difficult questions, and ones that we address with our federal customers on a fairly regular basis. If you didn’t know, CollabNet helps quite a few government organizations transform the way software applications are developed. In fact, a milestone in CollabNet’s history took place in 2009 when the Department of Defense adopted our ALM platform, TeamForge, dubbing it “Forge.mil.” Forge.mil is now a standardized platform providing the basis for development efforts that support credentialing and access controls, among other projects.

At the time, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) wanted to keep software assets protected behind a firewall, and it needed a single development environment for the entire software development lifecycle that was secure and provided total visibility and traceability of people, processes and tools.

The DoD represents a highly distributed body of organizations and initiatives. While some areas of government may be lagging behind, the DoD is one of the most active software developers in the world, and Forge.mil provides the needed foundation for many of the department’s most recent innovations— including highly secure and mission-critical initiatives.

Other public sector customers include large federal departments, state and city organizations and federal contractors. In all of these cases, these organizations have worked hard to modernize systems and improved the quality and functionality of applications that improve public service.  Across the board, many government organizations are delivering innovations at dramatically faster speeds, and have not had to compromise security or compliance while gaining a clear view of the entire software delivery lifecycle.

We also see a number of government institutions outside of the U.S. bringing development efforts into a single environment. They too are providing digital customer experiences that exceed even private-sector innovations.

CollabNet is very encouraged by the progress government agencies have made when it comes to software development, and how applications are improving public services and the efficiencies.  We also see a strong trend of government organizations embracing open-source and cloud computing to as security efforts improve based on adoption of large enterprise within the private sector.

The government sector is on the move when it comes to software delivery. This week, from August 13 – 16, we are participating in one of DISA’s largest events, the 2017 Department of Defense Intelligence Information System (DoDIIS) Worldwide Conference in St. Louis. CollabNet is demonstrating both TeamForge for enterprise collaboration and our DevOps lifecycle management platform.

If you are there, come by, meet us, see a demo. Find out how your team can start developing better quality software faster and learn more about how we have helped other customers in the federal space achieve these goals over recent years.

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