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Brittany Ballenstedt

Blogger Reporter Portrait for GovernmentExecutive.com Brittany Ballenstedt writes Nextgov's Wired Workplace blog, which delves into the issues facing employees who work in the federal information technology sector. Before joining Nextgov, Brittany covered federal pay and benefits issues as a staff correspondent for Government Executive and served as an associate editor for National Journal's Technology Daily. She holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Mansfield University and originally hails from Pennsylvania. She currently lives near Travis Air Force Base, Calif., where her husband is stationed.
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New Program Preps Veterans for Wireless Careers

November 20, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The White House and industry groups are teaming up again to connect more than 5,000 transitioning veterans to high-tech jobs. The White House Office of Science and Technology policy on Wednesday announced Warriors for Wireless -- a new nonprofit program that involves partnering with private sector telecommunications companies to help ...

Auditors Don't Yet See Cost Benefits of Telework or Hoteling

November 18, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Several federal agencies are exploring or moving forward on efforts to increase telework or hoteling programs to reduce their real estate footprint, yet most of these efforts are still too young for agencies to realize space reductions or cost savings, according to a new report by the Government Accountability Office. ...

Cybersecurity Experts Will Face Off in Mock NetWars

November 15, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Cybersecurity competitions are no longer limited to just high school and college students. Hundreds of experienced cybersecurity professionals will gather in Washington Dec. 15-16 for the SANS Institute’s second annual NetWars Tournament of Champions, which will pit the best and brightest security professionals against each other to determine who has ...

A Declining Number of Feds Feel Empowered to Innovate

November 14, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Faced with the constant pressures of doing more with less, many agencies and IT leaders are looking to infuse innovation into their cultures and strategic plans. There's a problem though: Fewer and fewer federal employees believe that creativity and innovation are rewarded at their agency. The 2013 Federal Employee Viewpoint ...

Are CIOs Still Relevant?

November 13, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Is the role of the chief information officer losing relevance? The answer depends on who you ask. A new survey by Tech Pro Research found a disconnect in the ways CIOs and chief technology officers and their non-IT counterparts perceive the CIO role within their organization. The majority (64 percent) ...

The Return on Investment for Big Data Is Far Lower Than Promised

November 12, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow With new computers and software enabling the ability to store and analyze data faster and at a lower cost than ever before, it’s all too easy for federal leaders to become overwhelmed, so much so that many are failing to tie that data to specific mission-focused goals. But as agencies ...

Federal Telework Use and Satisfaction Are Rising

November 12, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow While federal employees are registering lower levels of satisfaction with their jobs, pay and organization than just two years ago, due in large part to pay freezes and budget cuts, there is at least one area where satisfaction is on the rise: telework. The 2013 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, released ...

Cisco, Vets Push IT Careers for Transitioning Military Personnel

November 8, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Military veterans and a leading technology company are using this Veterans’ Day as a platform to encourage transitioning military personnel to pursue careers in information technology. Cisco, in partnership with the White House and other IT companies, in April launched the first-ever IT Training and Certification program, which provided 1,000 ...

Federal Agencies Welcome More Than 500 Virtual Interns

November 6, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow More than 500 U.S. students are connecting virtually with select federal agencies this fall to work on special projects in areas like social media, big data and digital storytelling. In September, 332 undergraduate and 179 graduate students accepted positions to serve eInternships through the State Department’s Virtual Student Foreign Service ...

What Government Services Will Look Like in 2020

November 5, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow With the government’s botched rollout of HealthCare.gov, it may be difficult to imagine a future where federal agencies effectively leverage technology to better serve the American public. Yet a vast majority of public-facing government employees believe that by 2020, technology will make that vision a reality. A new GovLoop survey ...