Bob DeLuca and Brian Whittaker from GSA’s Centers of Excellence discuss how the program is looking to grow in 2019, and what they want to see from potential agency and industry partners.
The General Services Administration is pushing for growth in the Centers of Excellence. GSA is looking for the third government agency to join the IT modernization program, and they hope to have one by the end of the fiscal year. Bob DeLuca, executive director of the IT Modernization Centers of Excellence, GSA, says that potential agency partners need to be prioritizing IT. “We are trying to make sure there’s a good strategic alignment. Does the agency have a strategic plan that includes IT as one of the top three things that they are trying to accomplish. And if it does, are they things that the Centers of Excellence do well to have a good match,” DeLuca said. “We need to see some level of organizational commitment. The Centers of Excellence don’t operate by themselves and then deliver something to the customer. We work with each other. There needs to be a good champion in the C-suite that is willing to work with us and go to working sessions and attend meetings on a regular basis so decisions can be made.” A key part of the Centers of Excellence are the industry partners who will provide the IT infrastructure. Brian Whittaker, deputy executive director of the Centers of Excellence says that they’re looking for the best of the best. “We are really looking for the best in class in a really specific set of functional areas, and to incorporate not only the large businesses and including the small as well,” Whittaker said. “We’ve reduced the number of functional area requirements from three down to one. So, our smaller business industry partners have room and the opportunity to participate as well. Some of those functional areas that we are really focusing in on right now are cloud adoption, information security, change management, data analytics, customer experience and contact centers.”