Virtustream Blog

Simplifying Complex Public Sector Environments


in Business, Compliance, Cloud

Agencies continue to seek ways to improve agency services and mitigate the risk of migrating mission-critical applications to the cloud.  Already, many agencies, focused on improving the citizen experience, have set their sights on the cloud. Flexible, agile and affordable, managed cloud can accelerate the agency mission.  Still, CIOs are cautious about which applications to prioritize and what steps they must take to ensure the reality fulfills the promise.

Since the White House released the Cloud First Policy in 2011, agencies are prioritizing the evaluation of cloud computing before making any new investments in IT infrastructure or software. Agencies have cautiously deployed sub-sets of applications in the cloud, like email, and an increasing number of agencies have undertaken projects to develop cloud-native applications in the cloud. Successful deployments and more cloud choices are increasing confidence in cloud.

The Benefits of Cloud Are Real

Originating with the government, mission-critical is a term now used by all organizations to describe the crucial dependency of an organization on an application and its relationship with the business of governing. Delivering mission-critical applications more efficiently saves taxpayer dollars, strengthens security and enables agencies to do more with constrained budgets. Migrating legacy workloads and applications to the cloud frees up the budget to tackle transformative new projects and programs.

The financial incentives for migrating traditional applications to the cloud are real. Analysts estimate that in 2018, 70% of the $95.7 billion U.S. federal IT budget will be spent on operating and maintaining existing IT investments.

Migration Speedbump: Reliance on Core Enterprise Applications

While modern web-scale applications were designed to run in the cloud, most organizations still rely on a broad mix of existing mission-critical applications, many of which were not intended to operate in a cloud computing environment and some that were not designed to scale up or down on-demand. Further complicating migration planning, applications may require stringent security or compliance controls to ensure that regulatory guidelines are met.

While agencies are increasingly eager to move to the cloud, many soon realize that it takes considerable time and resources to plan, re-architect and manage the new solution. The majority of today’s mission-critical workloads do not fall into the category that makes it easy for public sector organizations to migrate and gain authority to operate (ATO) quickly and cost-effectively. Most public cloud offerings do not allow these organizations to realize true IT transformation since the self-service nature of public cloud requires agencies to perform most of the management activities themselves still to support the workload and the end-user base.

Virtustream Federal Cloud – The Public Face of Transformation

Virtustream offers public sector organizations a better path to the cloud with secure and cost-effective managed cloud solutions that allow them to run the complex, mission-critical applications of today. Virtustream Federal Cloud was built to handle mission-critical applications for the most-complex, highly-secure IT landscapes in the world. While organizations’ public sector IT budgets remain stagnant or even decrease, expectations for new technology are continually rising. Virtustream allows agencies to cut costs from their most expensive and time-consuming mission-critical applications.

Accelerate Time to Value

Virtustream helps public sector and federal government organizations increase the performance and reliability of mission-critical applications while simultaneously helping them manage and contain costs from their most expensive and time-consuming mission-critical applications. Virtustream enables agencies to step into the cloud today by deploying existing applications with minimal changes and gain ATO sooner, versus taking a giant leap to re-architecting every application from scratch to be cloud-native.

Security and Compliance Come Standard

Virtustream understands that different applications have different use case characteristics and reinforces why we have architected and operated Virtustream Federal Cloud to address the specific requirements of migrating mission-critical applications. For federal clients, this includes understanding their security requirements such as FedRAMP, and the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Cloud Computing Security Requirements Guide (SRG). Our approach to cloud ensures continuity of operation and shortens time to value for our customers without compromising essential aspects like security and compliance. Virtustream Federal Cloud is accredited and holds a Joint Authorization Board (JAB) Provisional Authority to Operate (P-ATO) at FedRAMP Moderate, and hosts customers with corresponding FISMA ATOs that inherit platform FedRAMP controls.

Virtustream can also support International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) compliance for those organizations with ITAR-controlled workloads and data with specially designed nodes that have enhanced logical and physical security mechanisms.

Manage Costs

Even though public sector IT budgets are often stagnant or decreasing, expectations for new technology are continually rising. Virtustream Federal Cloud allows organizations to realize operational efficiency while increasing cost transparency and gaining the ability to allocate cost to specific programs, allowing them to achieve improved financial flexibility to choose the right services and resources for the right workload, and cut costs from their most expensive and time-consuming mission-critical applications. Virtustream’s true consumption-based pricing model allows federal government IT departments to only pay for what they use—improving economics beyond basic virtualization, and freeing up budgetary funding to be allocated to other areas.

Offload Management Burden

Cloud platform infrastructure is only part of the mission-critical workload story. With Virtustream Managed Services, organizations can realize true IT transformation through comprehensive IT management solutions that raise the bar on current operations and ensure that the most value and performance is gained from information infrastructures. Using industry-leading methods and innovative tools, our advisors provide real-time metrics to detect, diagnose, repair, and report on issues in the most complex business IT environments.

Focus on the Mission

With vast experience and proven, repeatable processes, Virtustream helps government agencies navigate the complexities of digital transformation and modernization. Virtustream allows agencies to deliver mission-critical applications more efficiently, strengthen security while simultaneously enabling them to tackle transformative new projects and programs.

Begin Your Transformation

To learn more about how Virtustream can help transform your agency’s operations to deliver better services to your constituents while beating budget pressure, contact your Virtustream account manager or reseller partner today. You can also click to learn more about Virtustream Federal Cloud and our public sector solutions here.