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Diplomacy in Action

25. Information Resources


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The Department of State made considerable progress in FY '01 in achieving its Information Resources Performance Goal—"Provide secure, advantageous, commercial quality information technology (IT) support for the full range of international affairs activities of the United States."  The Department's Information Resources Management bureau (IRM) continued organizing its FY '01 efforts around the following five strategies, outlined in the Department's IT Strategic Plan for 2001-2005

Strategy 1: Develop and deploy and sustain a secure, commercial-style global IT network and infrastructure. During FY '01, a project team was assembled to develop a solution to enable 30,000 employees worldwide to have Internet Web browsing capabilities at the desktop via the Department's existing Sensitive But Unclassified network.    Getting Internet to the desktop of State employees is a top priority for Secretary Powell. The resulting Opennet Plus project was  successfully piloted in FY '01 and the Department obtained the necessary resources to begin to deploy the solution worldwide over the next 18 months. 

The Department also developed a plan to expand within 24 months classified processing, Intranet, and e-mail capabilities to posts that do not now have them.  When fully funded, this project, known as the Classified Connectivity Program (CCP), will have deployed to 190 posts a modernized classified infrastructure fully capable of supporting foreign affairs functions.  As of the end of September 2001, the Department had deployed CCP at 60 posts. 

Also in FY '01, the Department made significant strides in continuing to implement the Enterprise Network Management (ENM) project.  This multiyear initiative will provide a reliable and secure global telecommunications infrastructure vital to the conduct of diplomacy and international affairs.  ENM developed a series of requirements documents for an Integrated Enterprise Management System (IEMS), worked with the customer service offices in the IRM Bureau as well as other Bureaus to ensure their needs are being addressed, developed procedures to manage customer expectations and support levels, and implemented enterprise-wide configuration tracking. 

Having completed the production deployment of a modernized unclassified infrastructure worldwide, known as A Logical Modernization Approach (ALMA), in previous years, the Department began the ALMA Operations and Maintenance phase (also referred to as Technical Refresh) in FY '01 by completing the ALMA Technical Refresh Plan.  This multiyear project, scheduled to begin its implementation phase in FY '02 and continue refresh at a rate of 75 posts a year, will sustain the $120 million original ALMA investment by lowering the risks of equipment and system obsolescence and outages.  The Department also continued to administer two Enterprise software, licensing, and maintenance agreements for Microsoft and Oracle COTS products.  These permit the Department to take major advantage of standardization and achieve cost savings.  This key objective of the Enterprise Licensing project is achieved through administrative and operational cost savings that include reduced acquisition overhead, leveraged quantity purchase prices, and efficient distribution and upgrade mechanisms, with the overall result of a lower total cost of ownership. 

The Department made progress in implementing the multiyear Secure Voice Program, which provides for an orderly transition to the new, NSA-mandated STE technology that will support all of the Department's business processes requiring secure telephone communications.  In FY '01, the Department began installing the new equipment at the IT Training Center and at selected overseas posts.  The Department also achieved significant accomplishments in the Public Diplomacy ALMAtization (PD Alma) project.  PD ALMA will bring Public Affairs employees at overseas posts into the Department's unclassified networks and systems, thus giving these former USIA personnel access to standard Department administrative and e-mail systems.  By September 2001, the Department had completed PD ALMA installations and training at 120 of the 205 posts in the project.

In FY '01, the Department implemented a plan to conduct an infrastructure alternative analysis by installing VPN technology between Washington and 12 overseas posts.  The Department plans to build on this initial success in FY '02 and future years by deploying  VPN technology to additional posts abroad where commercially available.

In FY '01, the Department made substantial progress on IT security by implementing incident handling and response teams, incident handling units, network monitoring and threat analysis centers, and effective working relationships with other Federal incident response centers.  Enhancements to the Department's IT security posture also included implementation of an effective anti-virus program, training more than 200 Information Systems Security Officers, and offering security awareness training at over 200 overseas posts. 

Strategy 2: Provide systems and tools to ensure ready access to international affairs applications and information. In FY '01, the Department established an interagency team that awarded contracts to three vendors for prototypes for a Knowledge Management, collaboration, and interagency communication solution that would permit all agencies operating at U.S. Diplomatic Missions abroad to exchange information and coordinate their actions more closely in implementing U.S. foreign policy.  In FY '02, the Department will evaluate the three prototypes for this project, known as the Overseas Presence Interagency Collaboration and Knowledge Management System (OPIC/KM), select a winner, and pilot the system at our Missions in Mexico and India.  Full evaluation of the pilot is on schedule for early FY '03.

The Department also made significant progress in FY '01 in the consular area. The Bureau of Consular Affairs (CA) completed development of and implemented a standalone border crossing card system.  CA also made significant progress in implementing the Passport Modernization Project TDIS-PD for a photodigitized passport system that is now more than 75 percent complete and has been deployed at all domestic passport agencies.  In addition, we have improved visa applicant name checks by implementing a Russo/Slavic algorithm, and we are developing a Hispanic and Asian algorithm for future deployment.

The Department's 2001 update of the U.S. Department of State Plan To Implement the Government Paperwork Elimination Act (GPEA), recently submitted to OMB, laid out, for the first time, the overall e-Government vision and strategy for the Department and spelled out an essential GPEA implementation environment, which included continued focus on the OPIC/KM pilot project and several high priority e-Government initiatives in the Consular area. 

Strategy 3: Develop a modern, integrated messaging approach and capability. Although the FY '00 Performance Plan indicated no progress would be made in FY '01, we prepared the groundwork for an ambitious strategy to replace our vintage WWII cable system. 

IRM has developed a plan and strategy for eliminating the telegram; completed a high-level requirements analysis for a new messaging system; completed an initial market survey of commercially available (COTS) technologies; prepared high-level process and module diagrams of the future messaging system; and completed a mockup of the capabilities to be expected in a new messaging system.

In addition, deployment of CableXpress was substantially completed in FY '01, and significant progress was made on the initiative to establish a Department Global Directory.

Strategy 4: Leverage IT to streamline administrative and IT operations and facilities. The Department made substantial progress on several major projects that support its e-diplomacy mission; i.e., the application of electronic government and business concepts and technologies to support the conduct of international affairs and global diplomatic operations.  This mission is detailed in the FY '01 update to the Department's GPEA Plan.

The Integrated Logistics Management System (ILMS), which is included in the 2001 update to the Department's GPEA Plan, is a Web-based supply chain system.  It will eliminate the need for paper requisitions and provide electronic storage of contracts, flow through orders from the warehouse and consolidated receiving points, and all transactions of the supply chain including e-commerce transactions with businesses and the public. ILMS will eliminate also the paper-based annual motor vehicle reports and the paper-based annual inventory reports from each post for accountable property.  In FY '01, the Department made progress on detailed implementation plans and conducted an independent IV & V of this complex project.

The Department continued to implement the Integrated Personnel Management System, Operations and Management project, also included in the 2001 update to the Department's GPEA Plan. In
FY
'01, the project began implementation of a functional Help Desk, installed a domain firewall, upgraded the project Web site, and began upgrading the interfaces with other Department administrative systems.  In addition, the Department moved forward on implementation of the Regional Financial Management System (RFMS), which will replace the Overseas Financial Management System running at two Financial Service Centers (Bangkok and Charleston) with one system that is compliant with applicable Joint Financial Management Improvement Program (JFMIP) core system requirements.  Software components were developed, preparation for the project pilot was completed, system testing was performed, the disbursing in a production environment was implemented, and the pilot was conducted. 


In FY '01, the Department began a project, known as Enterprise Server Consolidation, which encompasses consolidation and standardization of the Department's enterprise server operations.  The project was started in FY '01 and focused on developing a plan for a comprehensive server farm concept, establishing the infrastructure for the server farms and initiating enhancements of facilities in FY '02.  The project is projected to continue through FY '05.

Strategy 5: Sustain a trained productive workforce. During FY '01, the Department reduced the vacancy rate for IT positions from more than 30 percent to under 10 percent, established special IT pay programs, and improved recruitment through on-the-spot hiring at job fairs.  In addition, the Department increased the number of employees certified in Microsoft Software to over 300, conducted security awareness training at over 200 posts and upgraded three of our Information Management Systems (IMO) positions at three of our largest Missions overseas to senior level (OC) slots.


National Interest
Diplomatic Readiness - Information Resources
Performance Goal #
IR.01
Strategic Goal

Diplomatic Readiness -Information Resources - Information for e-Diplomacy

Outcome Desired

Fully modernized, secure, and advantageous IT infrastructure and information systems, relying largely on commercial services and approaches, supporting the mission of the Department of State and the international affairs community

Performance Goal

Provide secure, advantageous, commercial-quality information technology (IT) support for the full range of international affairs activities of the United States.

FY '01 RESULTS AS OF 9/30/01

The collection, analysis, and communication of information concerning international issues and developments is essential to achieving foreign policy goals.  With increasing quantities of information available, the Department places a premium on value-added and timely information.  The availability of secure and reliable information networks and e-Government applications (known collectively as the Department's e-Diplomacy initiative) are essential tools for the policy process and Department operations at home and abroad.  They are equally critical for the effective conduct of foreign relations and for communications with other U.S. Government agencies, businesses, and the public.

During 2001, the Department made substantial progress on initiating and continuing IT projects based on our five major strategies outlined in the Department's IT Strategic Plan for 2001-2005. The accomplishments under our stated FY '01 strategies include:

Strategy 1:   Develop and deploy and sustain a secure, commercial-style global IT network and infrastructure.

         Initiated OpenNet Plus project to enable 30,000 employees worldwide to have Internet Web browsing capabilities at the desktop.

         Developed and began implementation of the Classified Connectivity Program (CCP) to extend classified processing, Intranet, and e-mail capabilities to posts that do not now have them within 24 months.

         Continued to implement the multiyear Enterprise Network Management project to provide a reliable and secure global telecommunications infrastructure for the Department.

         In the vital IT security area, implemented incident handling and response teams, incident handling units, network monitoring and threat analysis centers, and effective working relationships with other Federal incident response centers.  In addition, enhanced the Department's IT security posture by implementing an effective antivirus program, training over 200 Information Systems Security Officers, and providing security awareness training at over 200 overseas posts. 

         Completed all preparations for the implementation phase of the multiyear ALMA Technical Refresh project, which will provide the technical upgrades necessary to sustain the $120 million original ALMA investment.

FY '01 RESULTS AS OF 9/30/01 (cont'd)

         Began implementing the multiyear Secure Voice Program, which provides for an orderly transition to the new, NSA-mandated STE technology that will support all of the Department's business processes requiring secure telephone communications.

         Continued to administer two Enterprise software, licensing and maintenance agreements for Microsoft and Oracle COTS products, which permit the Department to take major advantage of standardization and achieve cost avoidance.

         Completed PD ALMA installations and training at 120 of 205 posts that will bring employees of the Public Affairs sections into the Department's unclassified networks and systems, thus giving these former USIA personnel access to standard Department administrative and e-mail systems.

         Installed VPNs between Washington and 12 posts abroad as alternate routes.  These successful installations indicate that VPNs will become a significant network alternative as a back up for the Department's primary service.

Strategy 2:  Provide systems and tools to ensure ready access to international affairs applications and information.

         Established an interagency team that awarded three contracts to provide prototypes to pilot a Knowledge Management, collaboration, and interagency communication solution that would permit all agencies operating at U.S. diplomatic missions abroad to exchange information and coordinate their actions more closely in implementing U.S. foreign policy.   We are piloting the OPIC/KM systems at our Missions in Mexico and India in FY '02 and on schedule to evaluate the results of the pilot in early FY '03. 

         Completed development of and implemented a standalone border crossing card system, made significant progress in implementing the Passport Modernization Project that is now deployed at all domestic passport agencies, and  improved name checks on visa systems by implementing and developing foreign language algorithms.

         Updated the Department's Plan To Implement the Government Paperwork Elimination Act—a document, which laid out for the first time the overall e-Government vision and strategy for the Department and spelled out an essential GPEA implementation environment and several high priority e-Government initiatives. 

Strategy 3:  Develop a modern, integrated messaging approach and capability.

        Substantially completed deployment of CableXpress.  Progress in the CCP program over the upcoming 24 months will allow us to expand deployment of CableXpress in FY '02 and FY '03 to posts that did not have desktop classified processing capability in FY '01. 

         Developed a plan and strategy for eliminating the telegram; completed a high-level requirements analysis for a new messaging system; completed an initial market survey of commercially available technologies; prepared high-level process and module diagrams of the future messaging system; and completed a mock-up of the capabilities to be expected in a new messaging system.

FY '01 RESULTS AS OF 9/30/01 (cont'd)

Strategy 4:  Leverage IT to streamline administrative and IT operations and facilities.

         Made substantial progress on several major projects that support the Department's e-diplomacy mission; i.e., the application of electronic government and business concepts and technologies to support the conduct of international affairs and global diplomatic operations:

         Developed implementation plans for the multiyear Integrated Logistics Management Systems (ILMS), which will eliminate the need for paper requisitions and provide electronic storage of contracts, flow through orders from the warehouse and consolidated receiving points, and all transactions of the supply chain including e-commerce transactions with businesses and the public.

         Continued completion of the Integrated Personnel Management System (IPMS), O&M project by implementing a functional Help Desk, installing a domain firewall, upgrading the project Web site, and beginning an upgrade that interfaces with other Department administrative systems.

         Continued implementation of the Regional Financial Management System (RFMS) project by developing software components, performing system testing, implementing the disbursing in a production environment, and conducting the pilot.

         Developed a plan for a comprehensive server farm concept for the Enterprise Server Consolidation project, which encompasses consolidation and standardization of the Department's enterprise server operations.

Strategy 5:  Sustain a trained productive workforce.

         Reduced the vacancy rate for IT positions from over 30 percent to less than 10 percent.

         Established special IT pay programs, and improved recruitment through on-the-spot hiring at job fairs.

         Increased the number of employees certified in Microsoft Software to more than 300.

         Conducted security awareness training at over 200 posts.

         Upgraded 3 Information Management Officer positions at our largest Missions overseas to senior levels. 

Performance Indicator

FY '00 Baseline

FY '01 Target

FY '01 Actual

Percentage of commercial networking facilities available for unclassified and classified processing completed

Custom-leased telecommunications lines

Limited bandwidth and availability

Conduct studies to move toward commercial-style networking.

The Department of State has continued interest in moving toward commercial-style networking and has made some progress toward that goal. The Department of State independently moved toward commercial style networking by installing in FY '01 VPNs between Washington and 12 posts abroad as alternate routes to the DTS-PO-provided primary circuits.  DoS' initial success with VPNs indicates that they will become a significant network alternative as a backup (alternate route) for the primary service.  In addition, the OpenNet Plus pilot that was scheduled for completion in FY '02 was completed in FY '01.

Verification

Source:  IRM reports


Performance Indicator

FY '00 Baseline

FY '01 Target

FY '01 Actual

Percentage of classified and unclassified desktop computers older than 4 years

Unclassified - 10%

Classified - 90%

Develop plan to refresh equipment in order to capitalize on ALMA investment through regular refresh.

The Classified Connectivity Program (CCP) plan, which will replace classified desktops (and infrastructure) overseas was written and approved in FY '01.  CCP was installed at 60 posts by the end of FY '01, replacing 1,875 desktops that were more than 4 years old worldwide. The ALMA program continued to replace original unclassified ALMA equipment with the priority in FY '01 on replacing servers and routers. Ninety servers were replaced in FY '01. As a result of these efforts, DoS went beyond its commitment in the FY '00 Performance Plan to develop a refresh plan and actually jump started the replacement program that was scheduled to begin FY '02.

Performance Indicator

FY '00 Baseline

FY '01 Target

FY '01 Actual

Reduction of overseas servers

(The Department plans to review the validity of this performance indicator in FY '02.)

Average post has 12 servers.

Reduce number of servers by 25% each year. Average post has 16 servers (increases due to PDNet and expanded functionality).

As a result of increased management oversight, the average number of servers did not increase from 12 to 16 as predicted in the FY '00 plan.  The average number of servers per post increased by only 1.1 to 13.1. This increase was the result of the deployment of CCP and Cablexpress servers to 75 posts, and the deployment of 150 PD ALMA servers.  The FASI prototype deployment used a totally centralized server model to handle FASI operations in Washington, D.C., Mexico, and India.

Performance Indicator

FY '00 Baseline

FY '01 Target

FY '01 Actual

Progress toward elimination of the current cable system and processes (e.g., ACP-127 and IRM Communications Centers)

Current cable system outmoded.

CableXpress deployed as an interim solution.

No improvement

Significant progress was made in FY '01 in preparing the groundwork for the elimination of the current cable system.  Although the FY '00 Performance Plan indicated no progress would be made in FY '01, the following was accomplished:

A plan and strategy was developed for eliminating the telegram; completed a high-level requirements analysis for a new messaging system; completed an initial market survey of commercially available (COTS) technologies; prepared high-level process and module diagrams of the future messaging system; and completed a mock up of the capabilities to be expected in a new messaging system.  In addition, the Department successfully demonstrated the mock up to one regional bureau and received very positive and useful feedback.

Verification

Source:  IRM reports


Countries

Worldwide

Lead Agency

Department of State



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