Doan: Networx means change

The new telecommunications contracts will have a far-reaching effect on agencies’ missions

In unveiling the extensive Networx telecommunications contracts, the General Services Administration recently ushered in a new era with far-reaching implications for the security and prosperity of the nation and how government agencies accomplish their missions.

GSA’s Networx Universal and Enterprise contracts — through which GSA will meet the federal government’s enormous telecommunications needs — will provide continuity for the critical communications infrastructure that underlies government operations in virtually all agencies.

In plain English, government will be able to change and improve how it serves citizens and other constituents. Networx will:

  • Enable the Social Security Administration to answer more questions about monthly benefits — and do it more effectively and efficiently.
  • Improve the speed and accuracy of the National Weather Service’s forecasts, thus saving lives in the path of dangerous storms.
  • Enhance the Homeland Security Department’s ability to communicate internally and with state and local counterparts.  n Increase NASA’s contribution to scientific discovery and education through reduced costs and improved video and data transmissions from space.
As agencies take advantage of the interoperability enabled by Networx, they will also use the program to transition to  IPv6.  It  will allow agencies to connect countless devices to their networks, protect those new connections with encrypted security, and give agencies new ways to conduct intra-agency and cross-agency operations.

There is talk in many circles —  inside and outside the government — about Networx being a  catalyst for these changes and other transformational
capabilities.

Moreover, Networx offerings, such as managed services, will enable each agency to better manage its network and all its diverse devices. Networx products and services will make communications for each agency and across government more secure and efficient, and they will allow for more effective delivery of services.

Agencies only need to describe their future needs and go through the fair-opportunity process to obtain access to some of the world’s finest telecom companies. GSA and the Federal Acquisition Service will be there if any agency needs help in its transition to Networx.

Networx builds on the highly successful FTS 2001 program with its 135 customer agencies in more than 110 countries.

However, Networx is unique in its comprehensive set of IP-based services and products designed to meet future needs through its new security requirements,  management and application services, and  contract flexibilities that allow continuous refreshment with new products and services.

Networx offers transformational capabilities to  millions of users worldwide, and it also returns GSA to its core mission:  to provide high-quality products, services and solutions to the government at best value.

That’s where we want to be.

Doan is administrator of the General Services Administration.

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