The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) – largely because of its broad, hands-on healthcare mission – is not the type of Federal agency that can transform to near 100 percent telework. But that didn’t stop the agency from more than tripling its telework capacity to meet the demands of the COVID-19 pandemic, said agency CIO James Gfrerer during a May 28 AFCEA Bethesda webinar event. […]

According to The Washington Post, 40 percent of Federal employees were set up for remote work before COVID-19. And, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported just four percent of state and local employees had telework capabilities. Hundreds of thousands of government workers across Federal, state, and local levels were suddenly in need of remote access.






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DOJ Department of Justice

Nick Ward, Chief Information Security Officer at the Department of Justice (DoJ), said the agency is proceeding “full steam ahead” on efforts to explore adoption of zero trust security models, with the more distributed nature of DoJ’s workforce in the coronavirus pandemic providing impetus to that effort.






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General Services Administration GSA

The CIOs of the Agriculture (USDA) and Transportation (DoT) Departments said today that workforce productivity trends have been stable or improved since both agencies turned to large-scale telework in March to combat spread of COVID-19.






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EPA Environmental Protection Agency

Recounting how the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made a quick jump to 96 percent telework during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, agency CIO Vaughn Noga explained today how partnerships with other offices and a new approach to emerging tech helped fuel the fast transition. And he urged tech practitioners not to forget lessons learned over the past three months as they transition to the next phase of new normal.






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Government Telework

Before the COVID-19 outbreak, just 40 percent of Federal and only 4 percent of State and Local government employees were authorized to telework. But since then, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is mandating that Federal agencies maximize telework across the nation, and many SLGs are doing the same. Embracing telework – and doing it right – is a government-wide priority. 






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Several members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs are criticizing the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for its lack of Senate briefings on the Federal workforce during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.






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Remote work isn’t a new thing for many organizations, but with pandemic-driven shelter-in-place orders and travel restrictions, it’s the new normal. For most, this experience is a mixed blessing.  Work-life and home-life are melding together, more time is being spent with family and furry-friends, and commutes are non-existent ­­– unless you count walking from bed to the home office.  But during work hours, instead of chatting around the water cooler at our leisure, we’re now being inundated with virtual meeting requests.






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The Office of Management and Budget’s recent memo encouraging Federal agencies to maximize telework across the nation, has proven to cause some challenges for government workers making the shift, according to Kathleen Glow-Morgan, national transformational coach captain at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).






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GSA General Services Administration

The General Services Administration (GSA) transitioned from 50 percent to 100 percent telework during the coronavirus pandemic without any noticeable service disruptions, Deputy CIO Beth Killoran announced at the April 30 ACT-IAC COVID-19 Town Hall.






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Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser wrote a joint letter to the Trump administration urging them to not prematurely reopen Federal offices. Each of us have made tough decisions about which employees in our governments are performing essential roles and must still report to work locations, and which […] […]

How’s this for an emergency drill within the eye of the swirling coronavirus storm? As America social distanced, Federal IT has literally brought us together – as a government, and as a nation. As government IT operations achieve steady-state amid the demands of the pandemic, let’s begin to lift the veil on that story, starting with the Small Business Administration (SBA).






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Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., today urged the Federal government to proceed with an abundance of caution with its nascent planning to return workers to their office locations amid the coronavirus pandemic, and offered some insider handicapping on the likelihood that Congress will act to provide more funding in the near term for Federal IT modernization.






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The Small Business Administration (SBA) transitioned to telework “without missing a beat,” quickly implemented new programs, and scaled to adjust to a mass number of new users amid the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic thanks to prior IT modernization and cloud transitions, per CIO Maria Roat.






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