IRMCO honors IT leader of Pentagon reconstruction

CAMBRIDGE, Md.'Hari Bezwada led the effort to re-establish the IT infrastructure at the Pentagon after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Not only did the Defense Department's product manager for IT systems direct the work, which was finished in six months'a year ahead of schedule'but he also helped save the agency $12 million.

For his efforts, Bezwada today was honored with the Interagency Management Council's 2003 Individual Award. IRMCO also honored the Patent and Trademark Office and the Postal Service's Trademark Postal team with the 2003 Team award.

On Sept. 11, 2001, Wedge 1 of the Pentagon renovation project was two weeks from completion when a hijacked plan destroyed a section of the building. Two days later, DOD awarded a new contract for reconstruction, and Bezwada set to work.

Through a performance-based contract, he applied the Total System Performance Responsibility concept that let the contractor take the necessary authority and accountability to deliver a state-of-the-art infrastructure ahead of time and below cost.

Bezwada put in place the Virtual Program Office, which let the IT contractor share configuration management information with all interested parties online. This reduced lead times, streamlined the process and eliminated redundancies and rework. He also shortened the time it took for contract modifications from 14 days to one day.

In earning the team award, the Patent and Trademark Office collaborated with the USPS to automate a bulk mailing system to send time-sensitive legal notices to patent and trademark applicants.

The group developed the prototype in three months and then fully implemented the system last summer.

Before the new system, PTO would print the notices in one building then transport them to a mailroom in another building for mailing. Workers metered mail by hand and delivered it to the Postal Service. The entire process took at least a week.

Now the system lets PTO employees electronically submit mail through a Web portal, cut the cost for mailing in half and improve the quality, timeliness and accuracy of PTO's mail.

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