The Communications Evolution
Communications technologies are being driven by the growing demands of a mobile and agile workforce and the increasing migration of government services online. Government requires that new communications services offer greater security, availability, and performance while reducing costs, improving operations, and enhancing services to citizens.
In Texas, network services are being transformed by the needs of business and government with
- the rapid convergence of voice, data, and video requiring greater bandwidth over Internet protocol platforms
- growing attention to network reliability and security with increased connectivity to data centers and the emergence of cloud services
- increased demand for mobility, portability and wireless
- evolving requirements for remote offices and remote workers
The Texas Agency Network (Tex-AN) provides voice, video, and data to support Texas government. The communications infrastructure includes state operated networks providing voice and data services, managed service contracts for voice, video and data; as well as network operations centers to monitor and secure data transmission.
Tex-AN services are also available to eligible Texas municipalities, schools, universities, and assistance organizations. In addition the Capitol Complex Telephone System (CCTS) offers telephone service to agencies located on the Capitol Complex.
Like the private sector, state government seeks an array of communications services from multiple vendors with flexible but enforceable service level agreements to meet the broad range of business requirements for state agencies.
Creating aggregate demand leads to cost-effective pricing for state government and eligible government entities. The state’s enterprise approach remains a crucial component for the procurement of communications services.
The new Tex-AN Next Generation (NG) contracts establish new opportunities for state communications services with greater choice for voice, video, and data services. These contracts offer significant rate reductions for communications services because of the state’s broad base of customers.
Tex-AN NG services allow the state to meet the diverse and evolving communications needs of agencies by providing
- more competitive pricing
- multi-vendor environment for enhanced customer choice of high-quality advanced communications services
- enhanced business continuity capability through service level agreements
- converged services for greater flexibility to meet current and future business needs of state agencies
- incentives for adopting newer technologies
The rapid evolution in communications technology and the opportunity to reduce costs requires that agencies consider transitioning from traditional voice networks to an IP-based environment.
Next Generation of Communication Services
Tex-AN NG offers a new customer self-service portal, which provides a service catalog, online ordering, and service level review to increase transparency of service delivery. The self-service catalog empowers agencies to search, compare, and discover the most appropriate and cost-efficient services to meet their needs.
The Tex-AN Next Generation Service Catalog includes vendor details on
- service description
- service level agreements (SLAs)
- requirements to obtain service
- term commitments
- geographic availability of services
Agencies will also have greater insight into their service performance and pricing to help them better manage their operations. The Customer Command and Control (C3) portal includes a dashboard for self-service management and review of
- service costs
- incident trouble tickets
- service level agreements
- change management
- solution utilization
With Tex-AN NG, the state is well positioned to meet current and future information network needs. To take advantage of next generation services, agencies should evaluate their existing environment and strategically develop their service requirements through the tools established within Tex-AN NG.