Va. city outsources IT remotely

Va. city outsources IT remotely

In the go-go economic climate of the late 1990s, the city of Falls Church, Va., had trouble hiring and retaining IT staff. The city's network was 'antiquated, outdated and falling apart around us,' said Shirley Hughes, general manager and chief financial officer for Falls Church's administrative services division.

City officials decided to outsource all IT work to Reliable Integration Services Inc. of Dunn Loring, Va. The company remotely manages the city's Microsoft Windows NT network, including applications used by the city's police, fire, public works staff and 'everything,' Hughes said.

For about six months, citizens have been submitting problems, comments, questions and complaints through the City of Falls Church Liaison Action and Suggestion system on the city's Web site, CLASS sends an automatic e-mail reply to each inquiry and assigns a tracking number, Hughes said, and 'ensures we are being responsive to the people we serve.'

During this week's snowfall, Hughes worked from home on a notebook PC. Having moved to Falls Church three years ago from Maine, she wasn't fazed by what she called a 'dusting' of snow, which was enough to close most public schools for two days in the Washington suburbs.

About the Author

Trudy Walsh is a senior writer for GCN.

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