October 04, 2010, 8:24 PM — Diane Litman, acting deputy assistant secretary for information systems and chief information officer at Treasury, says CIOs can learn two lessons from the mistakes that were made with the Treasury Network (TNet) consolidation effort:
"First, when replacing a network that has been in production for a decade or more, there are many legacy applications that have customized network requirements that may not be well documented," Litman advises. "CIOs will face the choice of modifying legacy applications to fit a standard infrastructure, or customizing the new network to look like the old one and potentially losing some of the benefits of the new, standardized infrastructure. Careful analysis of all the potential applications, and providing the time and resources to do comprehensive testing, is key."
"Second, when moving from an internally managed network to a managed service provider, CIOs need to be mindful that all the specialized services that have been provided internally over the years are accounted for in the managed service contract, or are consolidated or eliminated before implementation," Litman says. "This includes common services like Domain Name System and e-mail filtering, all the way through larger issues like key management. Documenting these services before finalizing managed services contracts will save substantial future contract work."
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