The Future of Defense
Securing the Mission with Cloud
Senior Vice President and General Manager of the North America Government and Education Business, Oracle
When it comes to selecting a cloud provider, one size fits none.
As Oracle’s Senior Vice President and General Manager of the North America Government and Education business and a 16-year Oracle veteran, Pat Mungovan is charged with deftly managing Oracle’s position and strategy as the federal market navigates an accelerating shift from on-premises software to cloud-based applications, platform, and infrastructure services. While much of the commercial world has rapidly embraced a move to the cloud, federal IT leaders acknowledge its promise while balancing a complex series of mission priorities as well as choice, cost, compliance, security, and more.
For more than 40 years, Oracle has been a critical mission partner to the federal government. Today, Oracle is the global leader in enterprise data management. That leadership position, and the missions that are entrusted to Oracle, demand continuous innovation and agile response. “Our commitment to the mission of government is unwavering. We have decades of experienced-based partnership, and presently support an enormous portfolio of almost exclusively mission-oriented workloads,” Mungovan says. “Now, Oracle also provides the same enterprise solution capabilities in a more modern, consumable fashion in the cloud.”
Today, a small fraction of the more than $80 billion of IT spend in the federal government is targeted to cloud. By some estimates, as much as 80% of the total spend simply maintains legacy systems. But across both defense and civilian agencies, this model is in the early days of phase-out as enterprise cloud solutions are increasingly compliant, secure, and affordable.
With a focus on core agency missions and mission-critical workloads, Oracle provides the federal sector with the technology it has come to expect from on-premises deployments, but in a FedRAMP-authorized cloud service model. True enterprise-grade, compliant, and integrated SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS capabilities that support or leverage DevSecOps, artificial intelligence, high-performance computing, data lakes, and more, are available today.
“One of our core value propositions is deployment model choice. We are positioned to be the agile, mission-critical provider regardless of whether it’s on-premises, in the cloud, or both,” Mungovan says. “A key consideration is simply how customers want to consume the same world-class, enterprise mission-oriented capabilities. Cloud deployments present unquestioned benefits in agility, economics, and security, and can allow agencies and branches to unlock a significant component of ‘run and maintain’ type spend. At the same time, it’s not like the entire estate is moving to cloud. It’s a journey over a longer time horizon. So, we need to be responsive to the multiple modalities that exist with respect to security, data governance, analytics, and other capabilities.”
“Cloud deployments present unquestioned benefits in agility, economics, and security, and can allow agencies and branches to unlock a significant component of ‘run and maintain’ type spend.”
Selecting the Right Cloud Provider
Broad, multi-cloud procurement vehicles are paving the way for agencies to realize enhanced mission successes. However, they must have the knowledge to choose from among a pool of providers so they can select the right partners for their requirements. “Not all clouds are created equal,” Mungovan notes. “Cloud is an active, trust-based engagement where the first thing mission owners are going to have to do is think about what workloads are suitable for which cloud, and whether it has the right security layers, performance, and economics,” he adds. “It’s a hyper-scale opportunity, and it fundamentally changes the relationship from a legacy-based ‘vendor’ relationship to a more engaged, active, trust-based partner.”
Mungovan recommends IT leaders consider four key factors when selecting a cloud partner:
“Apart from perhaps security, the worst thing you could get into as you move forward in cloud are hard-partitioned silos of data,” Mungovan adds. “Our strategy is to target the most appropriate workloads and projects, and, as government embraces cloud solutions for its missions, elevate from a project-based approach to a platform-based strategy.”
“Cloud is an active, trust-based engagement where the first thing mission owners are going to have to do is think about what workloads are suitable for which cloud, and whether it has the right security layers, performance, and economics.”
In support of that strategy, Oracle is transitioning a business emphasis on project-based workloads to focus more on its cloud infrastructure and modernizing the SaaS environment to platform cloud. In a partnership with Microsoft, the Azure Interconnect platform does that job commercially, and leaders are working to build out the government companion capabilities on an enterprise platform that supports all missions in a standardized, open way. Oracle provides a full suite of cloud services that support advanced security and performance capabilities. Mungovan says this could be aligned to everything from cyber threat detection, to supporting troops, monitoring the flow of money, or border support. He urges decision-makers to budget for investments in innovation. And not just short-term innovation — which tends to be project-focused — but really thinking through the enterprise platform strategies.
“The big opportunity is to unlock the dollars spent on keeping the “technical lights on” and re-purpose them to the platform of the future – which is a hybrid on-premises and multi-cloud model.”