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Creating Efficient Processes for Cloud Computing Services

The U.S. Government established a new program to increase federal cloud computing services and standardize security requirements but struggled with long approval times and stakeholder engagement. We uncovered the root of the issues and helped them scale effectively.

Opportunity

General Services Administration (GSA) needed support with a government-wide program that was tasked with providing a standardized approach to security assessment, authorization, and monitoring for cloud products and services — modernizing government IT to meet the needs of today’s missions and customers.

This program faced several challenges, including a general misunderstanding of process, the unclear value of sharing authorizations between agencies, and communicating conflicting messages to stakeholders. The agency needed to improve stakeholder relations and increase understanding of the process to prevent program compliance from becoming a burden.

Solution

The program team worked with us to help define and improve processes, develop strategic goals and approaches, and improve stakeholder relations. In the initial stages of support, we helped design and implement Accelerated, a stakeholder-developed initiative that redesigned the process of authorizing cloud products, reducing authorization timelines from 24 months to less than four.

As the program matured and demand increased, we developed a plan to scale the new program to meet the desire for more secure cloud service options. As attention on the program increased, we recognized an emerging need for the program to begin communicating with stakeholders through new channels. The Clearing developed and executed a communications strategy to ensure stakeholders remain informed on program updates and key initiatives.

Impact

Our customer engagement and project management strategies enabled the program to efficiently scale and meet the federal government’s demand for cloud products. We helped the program achieve the following:

  • Double cloud authorizations in just two years
  • Define annual program strategic goals, objectives, and performance metrics with continuous monitoring and analysis of programs
  • Improved relationships with agency stakeholders and Cloud Service Providers to promote the use of program-authorized products
  • Refreshed program branding and communications strategy

I have truly enjoyed working with this team. They are professional, yet easy-going with a can-do spirit. I think of them as my A-Team. Overall, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE working with The Clearing. You are outstanding consultants and truly give the government its money's worth.

SENIOR LEADER, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION