Making his first in-person appearance at AFCEA Belvoir Industry Days since taking the helm at PEO EIS in May 2020, Program Executive Officer Ross Guckert held a Nov. 4 keynote address and participated in a panel with other service PEOs the following day.
Noting that the Army workforce “needs to change the way we think” to deliver the best solutions for multi-domain operations (MDO), Guckert encouraged industry attendees to read the Army’s Digital Transformation Strategy, Unified Network Plan, Data Plan Execute Order and Cloud Plan, since those key documents “chart our course for modernization.”
The cornerstone of EIS’s modernization strategy, according to Guckert, is cloud migration. “We’re making the business case on how we’re saving money and operationalizing the cloud,” he said. All of EIS’s legacy enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems destined for the cloud have moved already — or will soon, he added.
Closely related to that focus area for EIS Is the development of the acquisition strategy for Enterprise Business Systems – Convergence, which will modernize the Army’s core ERP systems. Guckert said EIS’s EBS-C product office wants to understand industry’s thoughts on how to shape and implement the strategy. “We’re not going to be very prescriptive; this year is about risk reduction and wanting to understand your ideas and proposed architectures,” he told attendees.
Delivering capability for three key programs — the Army Contract Writing System, Accessions Information Environment and Integrated Personnel and Pay System – Army (IPPS-A) — is another priority for EIS. While all three programs have been re-baselined this past year, they are all planned for delivery in the 2022 fiscal year, said Guckert. “The good news is we’re learning a lot from each of those re-baselines,” he noted.
Treating data as a strategic asset is a continued focus area for EIS across both its Business Mission Area (BMA) and Networks, Cyber and Services portfolios; BMA’s Army Data and Analytics Platforms (ARDAP) project management office was established over a year ago to take the lead in aligning EIS with the Army Data Strategy, said Guckert.
Meanwhile, within EIS’s Networks portfolio, all three project management offices are focused on delivering the requirements for the unified network. Noting that the Army isn’t “starting from scratch,” but is “starting off on the right foot with a number of modernization pilots,” Guckert explained that the Army’s Enterprise IT as a Service pilot and other efforts are helping inform EIS’s work. “It’s a joint effort; we’re excited to move out with the collective team to modernize the Army’s network,” he said.
Building the EIS bench is Guckert’s final priority — one which can be challenging due to the nature of the organization’s work. “Our portfolio is a different animal,” he said. “Unique skill sets are needed. If I don’t spin up new leaders before they come in, the learning curve is huge.”
Wrapping up his PEO panel remarks on the conference’s final day, Guckert unveiled EIS’s top five upcoming procurement opportunities: Enterprise Data Analytics Platform for Army Vantage; Release 4 Plus for IPPS-A; Systems Engineering and Technical Assistance for ARDAP; Pacific Infrastructure Modernization Capability Set for Power Projection Enablers; and Enterprise Digital Intermediate Frequency Multi-Carrier Modem for Wideband Enterprise Satellite Systems.
The complete list of EIS’s upcoming procurements is available on the website’s Business Opportunities page.