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PEO EIS panel highlights Army IT opportunities

By David Wood, Communications Division

PEO EIS Mr. Douglas Wiltsie led a panel discussion at the Armed Forces Communications Electronics Association (AFCEA) Northern Virginia (NOVA) chapter’s Army IT Day on Feb. 4, 2015 in Tysons Corner, Virginia. The 14th annual gathering of AFCEA NOVA brought together over 1,000 members from industry and government and featured a keynote address from Army CIO/G-6 LTG Robert Ferrell.

The PEO EIS panel was composed of Project Manager Installation Information Infrastructure – Communications and Capabilities (I3C2) Mr. Michael Padden, Project Director Enterprise Services (ES) Mr. Jeremy Hiers and Project Director Computer Hardware, Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) Mr. Thomas Neff.

Mr. Wiltsie’s comments focused on top-level EIS efforts, including modernizing the Army’s network. Mr. Padden expanded on that topic by discussing how Enterprise Service Management System as a Service, a key portion of network modernization, will deliver an easy-to-use, reliable and secure information technology service management capability as a managed service.

Mr. Neff provided an update on the Army’s strategic sourcing efforts, including a look at fiscal year (FY) 2014 sales figures. He also mentioned that the IT Enterprise Solutions (ITES)-Software contract is expected to be awarded during the end of the second quarter of FY15 and the ITES 3-Hardware contract should be awarded in the fourth quarter of FY15. CHESS is also planning to release a draft request for proposals for the ITES 3-Services in the third quarter of FY15. The nine-year contract will have a $14 billion ceiling.

Mr. Hiers discussed the Army’s Unified Capabilities (UC) acquisition, which is tentatively planned for FY16. According to Mr. Hiers, UC represents the next logical step of network modernization and includes integrated voice, video, chat, instant messaging as well as other potential data services. Mr. Hiers went on to say that integration of commonly used communication and collaboration capabilities at the enterprise level are possible as the network becomes more powerful and, eventually, UC will replace a significant portion of the Army’s legacy telephone infrastructure.

Another major discussion topic and frequent subject of questions from the audience was cloud computing. Mr. Hiers stated that implementing the Army cloud strategy is a critical step in enabling data center consolidation. Therefore, the Army plans to establish contractual vehicles for commercial hosting services and will be conducting market research to explore ways to increase standardization and cloud management across varying hosting environments.

The EIS leaders all expressed their interest in hearing from industry and met with a number of AFCEA members following the panel discussion. Several media outlets mentioned PEO EIS in their coverage of Army IT Day; some highlights can be found on the PEO EIS website under In the News.

More photos from the event can be found at

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Posted February 18, 2015