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U.S. House of Representatives Hosts IDCA at Ford House Office Building, Washington, D.C.

By Sean Mitchell
Tue 7 Mar 2017
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Washington D.C., August 18th, 2016: The International Data Center Authority (IDCA) was hosted by the U.S. House of Representatives at the Ford Office Building during IDCA’s QTSC summit in Washington D.C. This announcement comes after IDCA members concluded their tour of the U.S. House data center, and NOC facilities, and met with key members of The U.S. House’s CIO, responsible for the information technology, business continuity, application delivery and data center and disaster recovery strategies. The visit included talks with the CIO of The House, Catherine Szpindor, Director of Networking and Facilities of The House and Member of the IDCA Technical Standards Committee Advisory Panel, Richard Zanatta, and Manager of IT Governance & Compliance for The House, Nicole C. Morris.

IDCA Chairman Mehdi Paryavi said, “The methodologies of The U.S. House, as a key representation of the legislative branch, is very relevant to our work, since this is pretty much what we do, as IDCA pertains to data center standards. Therefore, in the sense of legislation and representation IDCA and The House are very similar in nature.” Paryavi continued, “The reception and the open access provided to the IDCA delegation was excellent. We really appreciated meeting with the CIO of The U.S. House, Directors of Data Center and Business Continuity, hearing their side of the story, touring their facilities and discussing the mission-critical nature of their work, the challenges they face and how they have been able to provide effective resolutions with the resources that are available to them. The session was strategically potent in my opinion, as one of the key initiatives of our work is brining the pioneers of the private and public sectors closer to each other and making sure that our ecosystem captures the realities of both worlds.”

Steve Hambruch, Chairman of the IDCA Technical Standards Committee said, “ The U.S. House was very gracious in taking time to speak with the committee and provide it’s input and perspective.”  Hambruch continued, “I think the IDCA can help government organizations truly measure the efficiency of their own IT systems by giving them tools and metrics that are meaningful to organizations whose efficiencies cannot naturally be expressed on a profit and loss basis.”

The U.S. House CIO office is in charge of providing uninterruptable services to over 12,000 direct end-users whom together deliver the nationally critical services to The United States of America whether the House is in session or not. The critical nature of availability, resilience, response-time, effective implementation of polices and procedures, as well s the fine precision required when it comes to business continuity and application availability is amongst some of the stringiest in the world.

Lance Walker, Member of the IDCA Technical Standards Committee, “The U.S. House tour was a very interesting visit. The biggest takeaway from this tour was the budgeting process. It’s a five-year process, and as we know, IT changes monthly. As soon as they receive money to build a data center, technology had matured five times. The challenges they have are very unique and with IDCA building these standards, those are things we will address to help them in the future.” 

Walker continued, “I have spent my years in the air force and the military and I totally relate to the sensitive gray areas of such organizations and how critical they can be to our way of life. I think the advantage of the IDCA to help The U.S. House is to help them quantify why they may need to find a different path of appropriation. IDCA can give them the tools to go to The House, and to the Senate, to help shorten such processes. “

“The U.S. House received us with open arms and explained their own challenges, so it was a great approach. They described how they have been able to identify their weaknesses and how they are able to keep up with the end-user demands of some of the world’s most mission-critical applications.” noted Dikran Kechichian of TechXact Group and Member of the IDCA Technical Standards Committee.

“The committee was fortunate enough to tour The U.S. House of Representatives data center and meet with not only the data center Director, but also the CIO of The U.S. House. In those meeting we were able to ascertain the factors that drive their decisioning and their technology selection which is invaluable to us in terms of properly modeling within our standards framework, the types of factors that drive government/public IT sectors compared to private IT operations,” Steve Hambruch concluded.

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