Accountability and reliability are demands and goals of every government initiative. Wasted spending and failed initiatives are the kind of problems that plague government organizations. Earlier this year, the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA) went into effect, calling for, among other things, increased accountability in any and all government IT projects. Not unlike enterprise IT, government IT faces the challenge of promoting cost optimization while improving the overall capability of IT. Among the ways to encourage each of these mandates is to integrate solutions that ensure applications and other infrastructure components function optimally.
Among the ways new federal oversights plan to enforce greater standards of accountability is by measuring traditional IT performance metrics, such as latency and uptime. Even with this information, government IT workers can’t make adjustments and improvements without clearly defined answers to the problems they face. Federal IT infrastructure is massive and digging through activity logs to spot a potential problem won’t result in the accountability IT needs at the government level.
The abilities to collect and correlate data in real time are at the heart of infrastructure performance management (IPM). When IT teams can see what’s going on under the hood in real time, they can point to likely issues and identify root causes. This is how IT gets accountable, by providing workers the technology to maximize performance and find real answers.
Enabling IT workers to get in front of potential performance issues results in a better performing infrastructure and overall improved cost effectiveness. A greater focus on accountability is a positive step. However, no modern infrastructure, especially one as complex as the federal government, can achieve its goals of optimized performance without technology that prioritizes performance to guarantee services are available whenever they’re needed.
The size and scope of government IT – never mind considerations related to data sensitivity – can make it seem like an entirely different beast than that of the enterprise. Ultimately though, the goals and the technology are the same. Government IT needs to shift its focus to managing IT performance, rather than responding to problems. In the enterprise, downtime costs businesses money. In the government, excessive downtime or extended latency can cost taxpayers millions. No matter your political views, you can see why that’s just unacceptable.
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