Army streamlining desktop support services

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - The Army is consolidating its desktop support services under a single organization and putting one person in charge of IT operations at each of its bases and installations.

The centralized approach will save dollars, increase security of Army networks, and ensure that the service's IT investments are aligned with the warfighter's needs, said Col. Mark Barnette, chief of the Information Infrastructure Modernization Division in the Army's CIO office.

"In the past, Cold War era, Army IT was never really centrally managed and funded," Barnette said during the 2004 Directorates of Information Management/Army Knowledge Management conference. "This is a more holistic approach, rather than buying a particular solution or changing a particular policy."

The Army will name 180 directorates of information management, one coming from each of its active-duty installations, under its Single Directorate of Information Management concept.

This means there will be one person at each local base in charge of Army infrastructure management, including messaging and collaboration, Barnette said. Other personnel currently working DOIM job issues will be reshifted to other core mission areas.

Other job details for the local army DOIM include:

  • Signing a service contract with each tenant customer

  • Introducing best practices throughout the installation

  • Consolidating disparate desktop/server support contracts

  • Improving network security and Information Assurance Vulnerability Alert compliance

  • Centralizing command, control, communications, computers and information management common user services across the installation

Barnette said the Army, in building what officials call its "enterprise infostructure," will focus this year on reinforcing the Enterprise Systems Technology Activity oversight of Army networks.

ESTA, part of the Army's Network Enterprise Technology Command at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., will give the Army a plan to protect its networks within the next 30 days, according to Army CIO Steven Boutelle.

The Army is also working on a second draft memorandum of its Army Knowledge Management document this year and will restructure its Installation Information Infrastructure Modernization Program, a $3.2 billion program to improve the infrastructure and connectivity of the bases.


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