SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel, Peter Silva

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New Survey Finds Increased Use of M2M Data Could Improve Federal Agencies' Effectiveness

Technologies Like Wireless M2M Can Enable Real-Time Decision Making and Enhance Strategic Planning Including Protecting Infrastructure, Ensuring Public Safety, and Safeguarding Our Nation

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - April 15, 2014) - Collecting information on physical assets is essential to mission execution in federal agencies, but its potential is not being fully realized, according to a new study from Government Business Council (GBC) and AT&T Government Solutions, a division of AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), and the unit within AT&T that serves a wide range of federal agencies. Eighty-three percent of the 355 senior federal leaders surveyed indicate their agencies could improve collection.

Respondents identify significant obstacles to information collection, including budget constraints (88 percent), a lack of manpower (76 percent), and insufficient technical expertise (69 percent). Sixty-one percent indicate their agencies have difficulty processing collected information.

Wireless machine-to-machine (M2M), a technology widely used in the private sector, could assist federal leaders in the collection of information vital to protecting infrastructure, ensuring public safety, safeguarding our environment and the nation. Adoption has been slow. Only 19 percent of respondents indicate that their agencies are currently using or considering using M2M. M2M involves transmitting information through sensors, meters, and other devices over a wireless network to automate tasks previously done by inspectors or analysts. Applications like monitoring energy usage in federal buildings and bases, or assisting the Department of Defense in the real time management of its many assets. 

"Though some agencies are already using M2M for asset tracking, field inspections, and environmental data collection, there is still a significant opportunity for this technology to improve decision making in federal agencies," said Ted Iobst, Director of GBC. "At a time when agencies are under increasing pressure to cut budgets and demonstrate accountability to Congress, it is more important than ever that they be able to keep track of mission critical assets."

Additional findings from the report include:

  • Majorities of respondents classify information on equipment (78 percent), facilities (73 percent), utilities (55 percent), and vehicles (55 percent) as important or very important to executing their agencies' missions
  • Respondents rank real-time decision making as the most important benefit of using wireless M2M technology at their agency
  • Cost and security concerns are the most widely identified challenges to wireless M2M implementation

The GBC report, "Information Collection: the Key to Better Decision Making," assesses the perceptions, attitudes, and experience of senior federal employees from at least 29 agencies regarding the current state of information collection in the federal government. The study is based on survey data collected from 355 senior federal officials from the GS/GM grade levels 11 through 15 and the Senior Executive Service.

To download the full report, please visit:www.govexec.com/r/m2m

About AT&T Government Solutions

Every day, thousands of experienced AT&T Federal Solutions professionals seek to go beyond their customers' expectations and deploy visionary solutions that serve our citizens, defend our nation and prepare for the future.

We serve as a trusted provider to the federal government, backed by a proven performance record in integrating our network expertise with IT professional services and a professionally managed service portfolio, which includes: traditional and IP-based voice; Wi-Fi; high-speed Internet; data transport; cyber security; unified communications; cloud-based services; and mobility devices, services and applications. Our broad array of advanced technologies, dynamic service management tools, and experienced staff help us to address core government needs -- reduce expenses, modernize operations to increase workforce productivity, and help protect information, infrastructure and people. AT&T solutions enable agencies to focus on their mission and performance goals.

Fusing our core capabilities with innovation from AT&T Labs and the AT&T Foundry, we are driven to meet today's demanding agency requirements, while establishing a path to emerging technologies. Underpinning every solution we build and deliver are the global resources and assets of AT&T, one of the world's largest communications services providers, connecting people, infrastructure and information with a consistent emphasis on speed, security and reliability.

To learn more about the full array of AT&T products and services, go to www.att.com/gov

About Government Business Council

Government Business Council (GBC), the research arm of Government Executive Media Group, is dedicated to advancing the business of government through analysis and insight. GBC partners with industry to share best practices with top government decision-makers, understanding the deep value inherent in industry's experience engaging and supporting federal agencies.

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