From mobile apps to testbeds on wheels, creative thinkers at government agencies are finding ways to better serve the public.
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The White House's IT Shared Services Strategy, introduced by federal CIO Steven VanRoekel in May, seeks to reduce duplicative IT systems and services by consolidating on shared platforms. The strategy is simple in concept but far-reaching in its implications.
Under the plan, the Federal CIO Council will create an online catalog of IT services that are approved for sharing across agencies. The services will be established by organizations designated as "managing partners," which are also responsible for maintaining contracts with agencies that consume the services. OMB wants federal IT teams to think "shared first" for new requirements.
With its heavy emphasis on commodity technologies, the Shared Services Strategy's innovations are more latent than realized. But a key goal is to free up funding for areas of government "where innovation is needed." If the strategy works, innovation should flourish.
Google in the Enterprise SurveyThere's no doubt Google has made headway into businesses: Just 28 percent discourage or ban use of its productivity products, and 69 percent cite Google Apps' good or excellent mobility. But progress could still stall: 59 percent of nonusers distrust the security of Google's cloud. Its data privacy is an open question, and 37 percent worry about integration.