Nextgov highlights how the government has maintained service delivery and workforce capabilities in the face of a global pandemic.
In only a few months, the coronavirus pandemic reshaped the way the federal government operates. With federal office buildings nationwide mostly vacant and more than 1 million civil servants and contractors working remotely, federal agencies had to rethink how to meet their missions and perform critical functions. Cloud computing became a key technological enabler. While agencies spent the last decade migrating various functions to the cloud, the pandemic provided a nitroglycerine-like accelerant to some agencies’ plans.
The cloud’s ability to scale provided many agencies with commercial-grade capabilities that allowed remote workforces to meet mission demands and safely serve citizens. The Department of Veterans Affairs, for example, provided more than 100,000 telehealth consultations with veterans from March to May, a ten-fold increase in video capability that wouldn’t have been possible without cloud. Similarly, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office beefed up its already-significant suite of business tools to meet mandatory telework needs. And cloud’s impact has been felt even among defense and intelligence employees, with the Pentagon exploring sensitive—and potentially even classified—telework offerings in the coming months.
In this ebook, Nextgov explores the cloud’s role during the pandemic and what may come next.
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