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News | May 3, 2017

DLA’s IT leader understands frustration, urges patience

By Shawn J. Jones DLA Troop Support

Visitors to the Defense Logistics Agency’s Modern Desktop web page will not find guidance related to Frisbee-tossing their new thin-client computers out of the window. But according to DLA’s chief information officer, they will find plenty of tips, tricks and other information that could help avert an information technology-induced meltdown in the first place.

Kathy Cutler led a town hall at DLA Troop Support April 26 that focused on providing information about the agency’s IT overhaul.

The Defense Department mandated the overhaul, which includes a move to the Windows 10 operating system and virtual desktop infrastructure, to improve cybersecurity. But the agency’s deployment has not been without its challenges.

Cutler said her team identified about 45 major issues that are proving difficult to resolve. Among them are problems related to printing, logons and common-access-card certificates.

“I assure you that we’re not going to stop until they are resolved,” she said, “and we recognize that they are causing an impact on you personally and your ability to do some of the functions you need to do to support the warfighter.”

Cutler also acknowledged the response rate of the Enterprise Help Desk isn’t meeting the agency’s needs.

“It’s very frustrating because right now our Enterprise Help Desk is not very responsive because they are getting so many calls, and folks are having to stay online for 40 to 60 minutes,” she said.

Cutler also said her team is working to reduce helpdesk hold times and to improve the time it takes to resolve issues.

In March, her team resolved 81 percent of IT incidents within 72 hours of assignment, but she said it’s not good enough.

“Our goal is to resolve 98 percent of issues that are reported in 72 hours, so obviously, we still have a ways to go,” she said.

Despite the helpdesk’s long hold times, she urged employees to keep reporting their problems, because each call provides information that may serve as a clue to solve enterprise-wide issues.

“We want you to call it in even if it is a known issue,” she said.