Edward F. Palm, Ph.D.
The recipient of the justification report is the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) located in Washington, DC. This is a really small agency that currently utilizes Microsoft products throughout its enterprise. The purpose of this report is to justify implementing Google Apps for Businesses within FRA specifically due to and seamless and real-time collaboration. This report will highlight key components of why and how the aforementioned benefits can be successfully realized.
As the Federal Government continues to see an increasing influx in budget cuts, to become a top priority. Google’s web-based messaging and collaboration apps require no hardware or software and need minimal administration, creating tremendous time and cost savings for businesses.
In addition to , Google Apps provides seamless and real time collaboration through the use of cloud services. This suite helps employees work faster and smarter by making it easy for everyone to collaborate effortlessly across teams, sub-agencies and locations. Google Apps lets workers share and edit many types of files in real time with the added bonus of continuous version control.
The following sites are potential resources that will be used to justify my claim and recommendation:
In addition to Internet research, it would be ideal to conduct interviews with industry experts and current employees of the agency. Another option is to go to the local library for books that may provide statistical and historical support for the claims that are being presented. Specific information that I would like to evaluate as a part of justifying my recommendation is as follows:
Cost Benefit Analysis
Research reflecting cost savings post Google Apps implementation
FRA’s technological current state vs. future state
Upon completion of my research, I will collect my findings and give a full report outlining recommendations for the implementation of Google Apps within FRA.
Table of contents
52. Problem statement
63. Method used
74.1. Shortages of Windows
84.2. Benefits of Google Apps
Similar to any other construction in the federal institution of the United States, the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration is faced with a multitude of challenges generated by the changes in the internal and external environments. People for instance demand higher quality services and assistance, technology raises more threats and the government solicits a reduction in the operational costs. It is the present belief that all these issues can be successfully addressed with the integration of Google Apps, which can stimulate technologic innovation to increase the efficiency and quality of data manipulation (and subsequently the quality of the services), as well as decrease the operational costs of the division.
2. Problem statement
The FRA is currently operating a Microsoft-based system of applications, which reveals a series of shortages. Employees for instance have often complained that the applications run slow and they require a lot of space (and processing capacity). Additionally, the employees at the Department of Transportation have also argued that the Windows applications will easily become infected with viruses, which cause delays in operations and increase the dependency on technical staffs to get the system operating again. Employees also complained about the blue screen and the need to reboot rather frequently, which also causes delays. At the level of management, the perceptions relative to Windows were those of trust in the established system, yet dissatisfactions with the shortages mentioned by the employees, as well the high cost of operating on a Windows platform.
3. Method used
The methodology used in the construction of the current study was a combination of primary and secondary research. The primary research was conducted among the employees at the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration and its findings were revealed throughout the previous section. Specifically, the primary research was utilized to identify the problems with the current operating systems used by FRA.
The secondary research is represented by the case study, through which data would be collected from various sources and then integrated in a manner that is relevant for the present study. In this order of ideas, the secondary research is condensed throughout the following two sections, which indicate the findings of the research, but also sit at the basis of the future analysis to be conducted.
The findings retrieved through the research of the secondary sources are divided into two specific sections, each dealing with precise aspects of the topic addressed. On the one hand, data is collected to support the problems identified by the employees at the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration, which emphasize on the theoretical disadvantages of using a Windows platform. On the other hand, the findings also integrate theoretical evidence in support of Google Apps.
4.1. Shortages of Windows
When operating on the Windows platform, the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration faces the following limitations:
A relatively lower level of server stability
A significantly lower performance of the platform due to servers which run slowly
The need to integrate, allocate and consume more resources
The need to restart the system frequently
The existence of compatibility issues between the platform and the non-Windows applications
The inability to administer the server (Web Hosting Information, 2005).
Aside from these limitations however, it has to be noted that Microsoft’s Windows system also reveals a wide array of benefits, which make the system noteworthy for the institution. In such a setting, the primary advantages of Windows include the ease of use due to the user friendly interface, the variety of the applications, the ability to become integrated with various business applications or the fact that it has voice controls for several applications, meaning that it increases work productivity (3CX).
4.2. Benefits of Google Apps
The primary benefits of Google Apps include the following:
The applications always back up the data and as such ensure safe storage and easy access
The data is fully owned and controlled by the company, rather than by a tertiary party
Google Apps provide a high level of security and reliability, as well as strong encryption and authentication
Google applications allow high inter-connectivity with devices such as Android operated devices, iPhones, BlackBerries, Windows telephones or any telephone with a browser
Real time operations, regardless of geographic or other barriers
Increased speed of operations
Decreased costs and decreased negative impact upon the environment (Google)
The usage of cloud computing, which in turn generates advantages of “speed, accessibility and storage” (McCorvey).
Also at this level, it is important to note the limitations of Google Apps, namely the lack of control over the system, the limitations of the storage capacity or the latency, which is still present, regardless of the improvements made to Google Apps and their integration among devices (Crowder, 2011).
The current section is dedicated to assessing the costs and benefits of implementing Google Apps in the detriment of the Windows