Software has taken on an outsized role in military operations. Today’s advanced weapons systems are software and network-enabled. And software is relied upon for virtually every mission in some way – whether just in the gathering of intelligence, mission planning, or in the actual execution of the mission, itself.
With software becoming so essential, there is increased pressure on the application developers that work with and for the Department of Defense (DoD) to develop more quickly – at the breakneck pace of innovation. And with so much at stake, the applications that they are being asked to develop quickly have to also be secure and assured.
This is what has given rise to DevSecOps across the military and government. And this need for rapid, secure application development has also resulted in a massive need for tools that can make the actual development and deployment of software easier and more seamless.
Red Hat is one of the solution providers that the military has turned to as it’s made the move to DevSecOps because of their innovative solutions and development platforms that can expedite the software delivery lifecycle (SDLC). And now, thanks to a new enterprise agreement with DLT Solutions, those tools could be even more accessible to the Department of the Navy than ever before.
To learn more about this new enterprise agreement and what it means for the people that develop mission-critical applications for the Navy, we sat down with AJ Ezersky, Director of Program Management at DLT Solutions.
GovDevSecOpsHub (GDSOH): DLT was recently awarded a $167.5 million enterprise agreement by the U.S. Department of the Navy (DON) for Red Hat solutions. What different services and solutions can the Navy and Marine Corp acquire through this deal?
AJ Ezersky: With the DON Red Hat II Enterprise Agreement, Navy and Marine Corps customers have access to Red Hat’s entire portfolio of offerings to include subscriptions, premium support levels, consulting, and professional services. That also includes training and certifications.
The Enterprise agreement consists of two components: the Enterprise License Agreement and the Agency Catalog.
The Enterprise License Agreement includes subscriptions for Core Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) products at premium level support, various add-on subscriptions, 10,000 Red Hat basic training subscriptions, and 20,000 consulting hours – with 4,000 of those hours available annually. The ELA is centralized and managed utilizing DLT’s MarketPlace. This creates an ease of accessibility and instant access of all Red Hat platform products for DON customers by eliminating the need for traditional lengthy contracting processes.
The Agency Catalog makes all of Red Hat’s remaining products available for procurement at substantial enterprise-level, pre-negotiated, pre-established discounts, terms, and conditions. This side of the agreement makes a number of exciting, emerging technologies available to the DON at steeply discounted pricing, including Ansible Automation, Open Stack, Open Shift, JBoss, Confirmed State-Side Support, and others.
“Altogether, the DON realized $163M in total cost avoidance on a $155M contract. That means that they saved more than they spent with the previous Enterprise Agreement, which illustrates how much value that DLT brings to this relationship.” – AJ Ezersky
The Enterprise Agreement is a mandated source of supply for all things Red Hat. If the DON is purchasing Red Hat solutions, products, or services, they must procure them utilizing this contract vehicle. The reason behind the mandated source of supply is to help all DON organizations and programs achieve maximum cost savings.
GDSOH: What are the Navy and Marines using Red Hat solutions for? How are these solutions playing a role in Navy and Marine Corp missions?
AJ Ezersky: Red Hat Enterprise Linux is the secure, trusted, certified, and accredited platform for numerous programs across Navy and U.S. Marine Corps, as well as all of the DoD, the intelligence community, and all levels of government.
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform is the Kubernetes-based container orchestration solution selected by the Navy for modern software development and delivery to ships at sea. The OpenShift Container Platform enables modern software development with agile and DevSecOps methodologies to create secure software more quickly, and rapidly deliver mission-critical capabilities to the fleet.
Red Hat also provides supported, secure versions of modern cloud capabilities like API management gateways, ActiveMW, Kafka, Camel, application servers, OpenJDK, and other solutions that combine the power of open-source software with the security of a trusted software supply chain and known support lifecycle. All of these solutions are part of the agreement with the DON.
GDSOH: Red Hat open hybrid cloud is one of the services mentioned in the announcement of this deal. Another is Red Hat OpenShift. How has the way the Navy utilizes applications impacted demand for solutions like these?
AJ Ezersky: Red Hat’s Open Hybrid Cloud model allows several Navy programs to do software development and testing in a secure cloud environment like GovCloud, or even multitenant cloud environments, such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud or other environments, where appropriate. It makes it easier for them to deploy these applications to a secure, accredited environment hosted in air-gapped or classified environments.
“The Enterprise Agreement is a mandated source of supply for all things Red Hat. If the DON is purchasing Red Hat solutions, products, or services, they must procure it utilizing this contract vehicle.” – AJ Ezersky
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform is what makes this possible. It provides a common Platform as a Service across all underlying infrastructure. This makes development and deployment more seamless.
Further, Advanced Cluster Security and Advanced Cluster Management provide single sources of policy enforcement, visibility, compliance, network segmentation, vulnerability management, and response across not only all OpenShift Container Platform clusters, but other Kubernetes clusters as well.
All of these things are helping the DON rapidly develop and deploy new applications and capabilities at the speed of innovation to keep our tactical and technological edge over our adversaries.
GDSOH: What is DLT’s Enterprise Agreement Platform? How is it beneficial for the Navy and other DLT customers?
AJ Ezersky: DLT’s Enterprise Agreement Platform (EAP) is a comprehensive and proactive Enterprise Agreement management solution that combines the power of the DLT MarketPlace with a vendor-certified team, and Rapid Ramp to Revenue (R3) methodology – all backed with empowering metrics.
EAP accelerates our customer’s contract utilization, simplifies the speed to procurement, and maximizes the value of their Enterprise Agreement.
DLT’s EAP capability enables the DON to rapidly ramp contract utilization, which leverages the DON’s buying power and economies of scale all while reducing contract administrative burden, contract duplication, and IT spending.
“All of these things are helping the DON rapidly develop and deploy new applications and capabilities at the speed of innovation to keep our tactical and technological edge over our adversaries.” – AJ Ezersky
DLT’s EAP empowers the DON to make informed decisions, provides asset visibility and tracking, delivers real-time reporting, improves operational efficiencies, standardizes and accelerates technology adoption, reduces contract administration, and identifies opportunities to reduce costs.
GDSOH: The agreement comes on the heels of the successful completion of a previous, five-year agreement between the organizations. What about DLT’s performance during that initial agreement led to the Navy and Marine Corp re-signing with DLT?
AJ Ezersky: DLT understands the DON’s objectives, is dedicated to supporting the warfighter and has a strong partnership with both the Navy and Red Hat.
DLT has helped the DON consolidate, centralize, and streamline the procurement process and effectively manage approximately 60,000 Red Hat ELA subscriptions while delivering increased visibility of Red Hat IT assets, and assisted with asset management, reporting, trend analyses, and metrics. More than 1,100 unique programs are utilizing the DON Red Hat Enterprise Agreement and its products and offerings.
Altogether, the DON realized $163M in total cost avoidance on a $155M contract. That means that they saved more than they spent with the previous Enterprise Agreement, which illustrates how much value that DLT brings to this relationship.
Featured image: Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Aaron Wilson stands watch aboard USS Gerald R. Ford in the Atlantic Ocean, April 19, 2022. (Photo by: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Zachary Melvin.) The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.