Agencies may fear losing control of their data if they don't have their own data centers, but the government must change how it operates to be more efficient, federal CIO Vivek Kundra said. (Sheila Vemmer / Staff)
Chief information officers from the Treasury and Homeland Security departments will lead the government's effort to consolidate nearly 1,200 data centers, federal CIO Vivek Kundra announced today.
Treasury's Michael Duffy and DHS' Richard Spires will spend eight months creating a plan to save money and energy by consolidating the centers, as called for in President Obama's fiscal 2011 budget proposal.
Many agencies have too many data centers, Kundra told attendees at the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association's Bethesda chapter breakfast. DHS has at least 23, and the General Services Administration has at least eight. Some servers and mainframes are only at 20 percent of their usage capacity, he said.
Agencies may fear losing control of their data if they don't have their own data centers, but the government must change how it operates to be more efficient, Kundra said.
"We've seen that this is the best practice from the private sector, and the government needs to take it head on," he said.
Telework is another area where the government can improve its efficiency, Kundra said. The Office of Management and Budget is collecting data from agencies to see how many employees teleworked when Washington-area offices closed during February's snowstorms.
Kundra said his office will examine which agencies were able to continue normal operations through telework. Those agencies will then share telework best practices with agencies that had fewer people working remotely, he said.
"In my offices, we were telecommuting the whole time," Kundra said.