Looking Ahead to the Defense Department’s IT Priorities and Strategies in 2017 and Beyond

Published: December 21, 2016

USAFARMYBig DataCloud ComputingCybersecurityDEFENSEHealth ITISRJoint Information Environment (JIE)MobilityNational Defense Authorization ActNAVYUnmanned Systems

Amidst a presidential and leadership transition, the Department of Defense (DoD) will continue efforts to transform its IT ecosystem through various technologies.

Deltek's new report, Defense IT: Priorities and Strategies, 2017 and Beyond examines the factors shaping the DoD’s information technology environment, explores IT investment areas, identifies future defense IT priorities, and provides market forecasts for several major technology areas.

Joint Information Environment (JIE) and Beyond

The DoD will continue work towards transforming its IT ecosystem into a unified Joint Information Environment (JIE) in as cost-effective a manner as possible. Parallel investments in cloud computing, big data analytics, enterprise mobility, and unmanned systems will merge with the DoD’s efforts to stand-up the JIE, providing opportunities for the department to leverage emerging technologies.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The uncertain budget environment may cause DoD to struggle with reaching Joint Information Environment (JIE) milestones on schedule.
  • The FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will usher in changes to the DoD’s technology acquisition and administrative structure, enabling the DoD to accept more risk and experiment with emerging technologies more rapidly.
  • As the DoD’s network security matures, hardening vulnerable networked weapon systems will become increasingly important for all of the military departments.
  • The DoD will have all the major pieces in place by the end of FY 2017 to unleash a surge in cloud spending and commercial cloud use.
  • DoD’s disjointed enterprise data management strategies and lack of chief data officers is hindering the department’s enterprise-wide use of big data technology.
  • Securing the vulnerabilities that mobile devices introduce is the number one challenge to expanding mobile access across the DoD. New multi-factor authentication approaches will to an extent alleviate this problem.
  • The DoD’s R&D efforts will focus increased spending on emerging technologies to enable swarm control, autonomy, situational awareness, and man-machine interfaces for unmanned vehicles and systems.

Evolving research and development efforts, acquisition policies, legislative priorities, a fluid cyber threat environment, and rapidly changing technologies all help to shape the DoD’s vision for its future IT ecosystem that support the its mission and strategy going forward.

To learn more about the major drivers in the defense IT market and get our recommendations for how solutions providers can maximize their market positioning to best take advantage of defense business opportunities, read the full report: Defense IT: Priorities and Strategies, 2017 and Beyond.