OPM CIO: new digital services team proving key for IT modernization projects

Guy Cavallo takes part in a fireside chat panel session at FedTalks on Aug. 24. 2022. (Image credit: Pepe Gomez with Pixelme Studio)

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The creation of a new digital services team at the Office of Personnel Management has proved key to the progress of IT modernization projects at the agency, according to Guy Cavallo.

Speaking Wednesday, the chief information officer said the recently established unit has been crucial in bringing in younger technology talent to work alongside legacy developers and other assigned staff on IT modernization initiatives.

“Having that digital services team inject new or agile skills and being involved in development projects that still has legacy developers and the assigned team I find is the right way” to approach modernization, Cavallo said at the FedTalks conference hosted by FedScoop.

According to the CIO, another benefit of the new team is that it helps ensure the agency has enough staff to work side-by-side with contractors on IT modernization projects.

OPM has also created 18 new internships and redefined some senior technology roles as it works to bring in a new generation of IT staff.

“Great technology with a workforce that’s resistant to it is a failure,” Cavallo added, describing the agency’s work to bring in new personnel.

The CIO added that OPM is forging ahead with work to move its IT infrastructure to the cloud in small chunks, with a focus on ensuring that each modernization project where possible pays for itself and demonstrates the benefits of such programs.

“If you take something from one premise, move it to the cloud, then cancel the on-premise contract, you’ve burned a bridge. Then you use that money to fund it. I think showing small successes, showing the tremendous advantages of elasticity and redundancy of the cloud — the business users see it,” Cavallo said.

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Guy Cavallo, IT Modernization, Office of Personnel Management (OPM)
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