As a consequence of advancements in defense technology outpacing organizational change within the military, defense enterprises are now experiencing significant operational challenges.
A sort of paradox has emerged, in which leaders who want to innovate must also use valuable resources to prop up old systems.
In new research on this subject from Booz Allen Hamilton and Market Connections, survey respondents cited process and budget as two major setbacks when it comes to working with legacy command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR) technology.
Military organizations are now dealing with an array of technologies that were not built to work together and thus require operators to shift between interfaces to accomplish a range of essential tasks. In a world where seconds of time can determine mission success, this isn’t a sacrifice the military can afford.
With a process called Enterprise Integration, individual pieces that make up C4ISR are designed modularly from the start, as part of an enterprise system, and maintained throughout the development lifecycle.
In addition to the clear benefits of interoperable technology, Enterprise Integration also gives leaders the chance to soothe specific C4ISR-related pains in systems development, security and acquisition.
Fifty-five percent of survey respondents agreed that the government-owned open architectures made possible with Enterprise Integration can also help prevent vendor lock-in, the paralysis that occurs when proprietary systems leave little room for agencies and organizations to pull in best-of-breed solutions as needed.
What’s more, nearly two-thirds of respondents realize the security benefits of Enterprise Integration: By designing in cybersecurity from the very beginning, the military can avoid vulnerabilities that spring up when protective postures are bolted on as an afterthought.
The modular nature of Enterprise Integration that makes built-in security possible also allows for a simplified acquisition process. Large, complicated solutions can easily become bogged down in the slow and somewhat immobilizing acquisition process. By implementing solutions in smaller, more frequent installments, leaders can focus on outcomes rather than requirements and pivot when the mission requires they do so.
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