Officials, Industry Preparing For More Mobile Government

Marjorie Censer | Washington Post | April 28, 2013

Walking through the halls of federal buildings was a distinct change for Steven VanRoekel, who had started at Microsoft right out of college and spent three years as Bill Gates’s assistant.

Federal employees had very simple cellphones and Blackberrys — if they had them at all — and many buildings weren’t equipped with wireless, recalled VanRoekel, who joined the government in 2009 and became the federal chief information officer in 2011.

He’s now spearheading an effort to modernize the government’s technology, pushing to make more information available to citizens and allow its employees to do more work on the go.

But moving the federal government to tablets, smartphones and applications isn’t as simple as signing a cellphone contract or building a 99-cent app.