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Harnessing the Power of Digital Transformation for Government with IBM Garage

By Andrew Fairbanks | Managing Partner, Federal, IBM Consulting
October 13, 2021

Technology continues to advance at an extremely rapid pace. Hybrid cloud, computing, artificial intelligence (AI), and 5G are enabling organizations around the world to fundamentally change the...

Technology continues to advance at an extremely rapid pace. Hybrid cloud, computing, artificial intelligence (AI), and 5G are enabling organizations around the world to fundamentally change the ways in which they operate. Organizations are also realizing – often in reaction to a highly damaging intrusion – that the measures they take to secure their IT systems are critical to continuity of operations and protection of highly sensitive data. As this relates to our federal government agencies specifically, to meet the dual imperatives of mission effectiveness and security, they must modernize their infrastructure, architectural models, and ways of working. They must be able to work with agility, speed, and discipline to harness the new capabilities to reduce cost and improve effectiveness, while simultaneously protecting the increased size and complexity of their attack surfaces.

With President Biden’s May 2021 Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity, the White House reignited the modernization discussion, driving to make it a priority for federal government agencies. Modernization is required to implement Zero Trust models, to sunset unsupported infrastructure hardware and software that are vulnerable to attack, and to enable more modern features and functions to be implemented to reduce the cost of government operations, improve mission effectiveness, and improving public sector customer experience. However, these government agencies face unique regulatory, acquisition, and cultural obstacles to IT modernization. Operational agility and flexibility is top of mind for more than 68 percent of government leaders around the world, according to a recent study from the IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV).

To help the federal government accelerate its path to modernization, IBM is proud to announce today that we are expanding IBM Garage™ to Huntsville, Alabama, home to the Redstone Arsenal Federal Center of Excellence, where various tenants of the Department of Defense, Department of Justice and NASA already sit. IBM Garage is our unique approach that connects organizations with the right mix of IBM business, technology and design experts in a collaborative environment to help fast-track innovation and help clients drive lasting, meaningful transformation. While IBM Garage has conducted engagements with over 4,000 organizations around the world, the IBM Garage at Huntsville is specifically designed for the Federal government, where we have already collaborated extensively with the U.S. Army’s Logistics Data Analysis Center (LDAC).

LDAC is Army Materiel Command’s (AMC) logistics data analytics service. It provides sustainment data, information technology and decision support to improve readiness and enable effective Army senior leader decision-making from the Army’s strategic support areas to the tactical points of need.  LDAC, in collaboration with IBM, is using IBM Garage methodology to digitally transform the agency, move their operations to the cloud, and develop in-house analytics capabilities.

This effort has included rapidly building discrete capabilities, including parts demand forecasting or data discovery toolkits, but also maturing agile, DevSecOps and design thinking practices across the organization. These innovations help LDAC customers get improved reports and applications faster, to meet their mission. In the longer term, LDAC sees the potential to leverage their logistics expertise to provide scalable and user-centric data services to the AMC.

With the continued success of supporting LDAC and other federal agencies, the IBM Garage at Huntsville is specifically situated to address the unique hurdles in the way of government digital transformation and modernization. This new service provides government-grade cloud environments, cleared local resources trained in the patterns and practices of IBM Garage, and thought leaders available in a hybrid delivery model.

Depending on where an agency is in its transformation journey, IBM Garage Huntsville offers a variety of service options, which are all available both remotely and, when safe to do so, at the IBM Huntsville office or on client site. Wherever the setting, government clients will have access to IBM Garage methodology to help accelerate progress in their digital transformation.

Modernization can seem overwhelming. Our newly opened IBM Garage in Huntsville can quickly address the needs of government agencies and help them overcome their unique regulatory, acquisition, and cultural obstacles to begin making immediate progress on their modernization imperatives.

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