Excellence begins at home, TTS chief says

Agencies don't have to depend on the General Services Administration to design and launch their own internal Centers of Excellence-like programs to support modernization.

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Agencies don't have to depend on the General Services Administration to design and launch internal   Centers of Excellence-like programs to support modernization.

GSA's Technology Transformation Service won't announce a third agency participant in its IT Modernization CoE initiative for months. Even so, TTS acting Director Kelly Olson said, that shouldn't stop other agencies from designing their own similar programs.

Last December, the Department of Agriculture was named as the first agency to host the CoE initiative, which looks to bring private-sector expertise to help solve government IT problems. In September, GSA named the Department of Housing and Urban Development as the second participating agency.

"GSA's Centers of Excellence are only two agencies," Olson said at an Oct. 11 event hosted by NextGov. However, she noted, CIOs at the Department of Transportation and the Small Business Administration, are getting started on their own.

"They are launching their own organization initiatives in an enterprise fashion. It looks and feels a lot like what we're doing," Olson said. "We're fully supportive." TTS can partner with those agencies that begin their own programs, as well, she said.

DOT rolled out the Destinations Digital program last spring that is consistent with the CoE principles and goals.

At SBA, CIO Maria Roat has pushed a number of modernization initiatives, including a September award of a five-year contract with a $40 million ceiling to Alpha Omega Integration and World Services to help with strategic planning and engineering expertise for the CIO's FY 2018-2022 initiatives and technology needs.

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