They also have questions about cloud providers, composable tech stacks, and leaving behind monolithic platforms and servers housed on premises.
But as conversations begin with consulting firms and technology partners, new challenges arise related to the mind-shift necessary when federal agencies and departments genuinely embrace the cloud. For example, when shifting to the cloud, agencies no longer need to buy servers and pay for space to house those servers. But they do have to pay recurring fees for cloud usage. Instead of a one-time cost for a new stack of servers, new cost cadences can trigger their internal challenges.
Another example: In embracing the cloud, departments within an agency – and without – can more easily share previously siloed data. But embracing this new reality requires a mind-shift. In this case, not just from leadership but also from employees who can now utilize and access the data.
Technological Solutions + Thought Leadership = DMI
Through many years of working with federal partners, DMI has learned the importance of providing the right technological solution and trusted thought leadership.
DMI’s ongoing work with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on their phased shift to AWS GovCloud provides a real-world example of what it looks like to couple technical skill and thought leadership to offer a complete resolution to urgent technological needs.
“There are many technical folks in the world that can build a cloud platform for a federal client. But bringing the thought leadership, and integrating the business and the technology together, is the key,” said Rajesh Sripada, Sr. Director, Business Intelligence and Data Management, DMI.
Helping an agency like the FDA embrace a new way of doing business can be difficult due to silos and information barriers that could be political, social, or cultural.
“Breaking such barriers requires enormous amounts of experience and a long understanding of FDA’s culture,” said Sripada. “You have to reach out and bring people in to make the project’s success possible. It’s really not just about technology but also thought leadership at an enterprise level.”
DMI, FDA & AWS Cloud
In Phase 1 of the FDA project, DMI worked closely with agency leaders to help them understand the shifting cost cadence associated with the cloud. Sripada and his team explained how the elasticity of the cloud allows agencies to pay only for what they need and how the cost structure diverges from maintaining servers on-premises.