Cloud, mobile, big data and other emerging technologies have forever altered American citizens’ expectations of government IT. To meet these expectations, the federal government must make network modernization a priority. As stated by federal CIO Tony Scott, existing government infrastructure “was never designed for the mission and the challenges we face today.”
One way to accomplish this is through the New IP. An industry term for an innovative approach to networking that is software-enabled, user-centric and based on open standards, the New IP has the ability to save taxpayers $7 billion over the next five years. There are a number of steps IT leaders can take to make the transition and realize these savings – selecting open standards and multivendor networks, implementing Ethernet fabrics and software-enabled network technologies and considering alternative procurement models such as as-a-service solutions.
Currently, agencies spend more than 70 percent of IT budgets on maintenance. As a result, agencies are unable to make much needed investments in new network infrastructure, pushing the administration to call for smarter IT delivery by working to reform the federal IT acquisition process. Complementing this effort, initiatives and guidance like the administration’s Digital Services Playbook, call for government to develop best practices to save time and money, while still enabling innovation. In order to meet these objectives, government needs a new solution. Rather than continuing to pay for legacy equipment that can’t keep up with government’s changing needs, agencies can break the cycle by shifting from a network-as-an-asset procurement approach to an Op-Ex aligned network as-a-service solution with Brocade Network Subscription.
Aside from enabling agencies to break the cycle of maintenance spending, Brocade Network Subscription model provides exceptional flexibility empowering agencies to deploy a network that is always mission-ready, unburdened by long-term commitments and appropriations cycles, addressing goals of initiatives like the Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act. This is especially important as 50 percent of IT managers say their mission has changed over the past three years. Infrastructure must be able to adapt just as quickly.
Brocade Network Subscription also allows agencies to determine when and where technology upgrades or refreshes are needed, and allows them to scale up or down infrastructure capacity with 60 day notification, giving them the ability to be mission-ready as requirements shift.
Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) CIO Dave Bennett has highlighted how the agency has benefited from an as-a-service procurement approach. At a FedScoop event, Bennett noted, “Throughout the course of a contract I’m able to ebb and flow and have a built-in tech refresh…this helps me support users by quickly and consistently bringing in new capabilities as technology evolves in a cost-effective way.” DISA’s adoption of alternative network procurement models affords the agency greater flexibility ultimately making their IT resources go further.
Agencies cannot embrace the future when tied to extensive, fixed term commitments. Through Brocade’s Network Subscription, agencies can transform expensive legacy network support spending into an agile, fluid, flexible, scalable, future-ready network infrastructure.
Brocade’s Network Subscription solution promotes a disciplined approach to managing the network lifecycle, which includes Technology assessment and design, acquisition and deployment, maintenance /support, technology refresh, and asset dispositioning, while embracing the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) to align ‘costs with usage’. Thus, Network Subscription helps agencies overcome the challenges of technology obsolescence; to take control of the future, to realize significant improvements in performance, productivity, and service delivery by ‘always having the right network…at the right time.’