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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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Around Government

January 21, 2014 Sequestration Relief The easing of spending caps could stave off more furloughs, at least for now. Agencies likely won’t have to force employees to take unpaid leave in 2014, but accomplishing their missions could still prove difficult. In December 2013, Congress finally came together to pass a bipartisan budget compromise, ...

Should Agencies Spend Money on Trainings If There's a Free Virtual Version?

January 17, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Federal agencies saved hundreds of millions of dollars through reduced conference spending over the past three years, and social networking website GovLoop wants to help agencies save even more through virtual conferences, career fairs and training. GovLoop this year will stand up a virtual government training division that will work ...

How the Cloud Could Be Helping Agencies More

January 15, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Federal agencies are aware of the benefits of cloud computing – from information sharing to cost reductions to personnel efficiency – yet many are still in the early stages of deploying it, according to a new survey. A survey of 223 federal, state and local government employees and contractors included ...

Many Feds Take Security Risks With Laptops, Smartphones and Tablets

January 14, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Most federal employees are taking steps to secure agency data – from locking their computers when away from their desk to storing files in a safe place – but many are not taking the same care when it comes to mobile devices. That’s according to a new report by Mobile ...

BYOD News: The Scramble to Get All the New Devices Online After the Holidays

January 10, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow With the holidays now behind us, federal IT shops may have been overwhelmed this week with the new device deluge – federal employees bringing their new tech gadgets gifts into work and in many cases onto government agency networks. IBM’s recently released Digital Analytics Benchmark showed that mobile traffic accounted ...

Top Info Security Execs Earn as Much as Other Chiefs

January 9, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow There’s good news for chief information security officers: Your salaries are often on par with other chief-level executives across an organization, though it may depend on which of those chiefs you call your boss. A recent survey of cybersecurity professionals in more than 130 large commercial organizations by the Ponemon ...

Few IT Pros Aspire to CIO Ranks

January 6, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow If you’re an information technology worker, chances are you’re not aspiring to the top IT job of chief information officer. That’s according to a new Computerworld survey of 489 IT professionals that found just 32 percent of respondents said their career aspirations include becoming a CIO. More than half (55 ...

Why Telework When You Can Take a Snow Day?

January 3, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Agency leaders who have incorporated telework into their continuity of operations plans likely had an advantage Friday, when their employees could take unscheduled telework to avoid the slippery commute after a snowstorm hit the East Coast. Snowstorms often force federal offices to shut down, requiring only emergency and telework-ready employees ...

New Year Brings Good News for Technology Pros

January 2, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The new year is bringing positive employment news for information technology workers, with the majority of tech-focused managers and recruiters planning to boost hiring in the next six months. Dice.com’s 2014 Hiring Survey of nearly 900 technology-focused hiring managers and recruiters found that nearly three out of four respondents (73 ...

Why Aren’t More Feds Teleworking?

December 20, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Nearly half of federal employees have been told by their supervisors that they are indeed eligible to telework, yet most aren’t doing so. The Office of Personnel Management’s latest telework status report, released Wednesday, found that 47 percent of federal employees in September 2012 were notified of their eligibility to ...