Insight by General Dynamics Information Technology

Using application services to enhance government customer experience

Software development for commercial and federal websites has changed over the past five years. Today, commercial sites take advantage of the flexibility that application services provide and the federal government is taking advantage of these innovations as well.

For example, General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT) has worked with agencies to focus on application services. GDIT uses tools like DevOps and rapid iteration, as well as incorporating cybersecurity into design to complete the task.

GDIT’s Janek Claus, DevOps capability lead and Jay Olsen, director of application services, joined Federal News Network to discuss how the correct methodology can complete tasks quickly and with appropriate compliance.

When creating applications, Olsen discussed the importance of getting it right the first time to maximize efficiencies. Iterative software development doesn’t intend to cobble cybersecurity in at the last moment, it means to incorporate it at every iteration. Going back to “bolt on” connectors and other dependencies can be disastrous for larger project.

Further, when an iterative approach is embraced, agencies can pivot and move with changing requirements, changing budget constraints and new technology pricing.

When creating applications, Olsen discussed the importance of getting it right the first time to maximize efficiencies.

“We want to make sure that we’re designing applications that we can design and build once and deploy anywhere,” he said.

Claus then noted the importance of knowing the customer’s needs before making any final decisions. Organizations with experience in enterprise software development will know how to ask questions about meta data, architecture and taxonomy.

“You have to look into what are the specific requirements that your customer or the federal agency requires in order to find the right cloud provider,” Claus said.

This view from “40,000 feet” enables companies like GDIT to see system integration from a holistic perspective. Rather than some noble goal, a broad perspective allows large systems to flex and adapt to ever changing requirements.

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