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OPM Wants to Extend New Cloud Instance Across Agency

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OPM Wants to Extend New Cloud Instance Across Agency

The Office of Personnel Management plans to create a procurement strategy to extend its new cloud instance to the rest of the agency, according to a senior official.

Akanksha Sharma, a senior adviser to OPM's chief information officer, said the plan is based on the agency's successful adoption of cloud for plotting and analyzing coronavirus data. 

“The next major step is for us to create a procurement strategy that allows us to actually scale the cloud. Since we needed something quickly. I think we did it on a purchase card, so you really can’t put too many high-performing applications on there,” Sharma said. 

According to her, OPM's facilities management team used to spend up to three hours a day updating its spreadsheet of data on coronavirus cases to help decide when to reopen offices. 

OPM tapped GSA's Cloud Adoption Center of Excellence for help in developing a faster solution because relying on a commercial off-the-shelf solution would have taken months of internal approvals. 

The result was a custom, open-source, Python-based application that features a dashboard displayed through JavaScript and HTML. 

“I really jumped on that with the help of the CoE team because I just thought it was such a great, tangible use case to drive business value. So within three weeks, we were able to create a dashboard for them," Sharma added. 

During the dashboard's adoption, Sharma's team partnered with OPM's cybersecurity team to streamline the authority-to-operate process and create a plan for adding new apps to the cloud in the future. 

GSA's Cloud Adoption CoE helps government agencies select and design appropriate paths for migrating to cloud services. The center also offers cybersecurity, cloud acquisition support, cloud governance, business applications and digital capabilities. 

Category: Popular Voices

Tags: Akanksha Sharma cloud Cloud Adoption Center of Excellence CoE commercial off-the-shelf solution cybersecurity dashboard coronavirus date and analyze data on the coronavirus FedScoop General Services Administration HTML JavaScript Office of Personnel Management open-source OPM Popular Voices procurement procurement strategy Python application