Ardent's Common Microservices Initializer Accelerates Agency's Digital Transformation

NITAAC offers an array of innovative technology services and solutions such as microservices through our award-winning contract holders on our Best in Class (BIC) Government-Wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs).

Many government systems are developed as monoliths. These server-side systems are usually based on a single language such as Java, JSON, etc. and within a single application. That can pose various challenges to agencies as those systems are primarily knowledge and language dependent, so new features must be developed within the same framework. These systems are difficult to maintain, manage and scale – and can become a liability roadblock to progress.

That is why microservices are currently in high demand. Microservices are an architecture in which complex applications are composed of small, independent processes that communicate with each other using language-agnostic Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Using microservices, individual areas within an organization can develop in whatever language or application that works best for them without affecting other areas of the system. This results in faster, easier to manage updates that do not directly affect other areas of the system.

Ardent Management Consulting (Ardent), a NITAAC CIO-SP3 Contract Holder, developed a solution called the Common Microservices Initializer or CMI.

CMI was developed for use by a component within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to help generate clean structured, fully functional Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) pipelines adhering to the Department’s guidelines and best practices. The DHS component had been onboarding several new development teams and tasking them with developing microservices, which was a lengthy two-week process, that involved multiple developers. Additionally, there were few templates or frameworks in place to ensure that the microservices being built were consistent or standardized, which resulted in a lot of technical debt.

“The challenges that agencies are facing today include all of these monolithic apps that need to be modernized, which require significant effort to plan and architect. To get to the endpoint can take several years,” noted Pawan Gyanwali, Ardent’s Vice President of Digital Transformation. “So, we looked at that particular model and figured out how we could speed up that process of the migration for our clients and make this process more efficient and cost effective. We developed a solution called CMI that helps agencies build and deploy microservices faster and ensures they are built correctly.”

With CMI, microservices can be up and running in a fraction of the time compared to new design and development, helping organizations bring value to its digital transformation mission approximately 65% faster, saving both time and money. More information is available in the Maximizing Microservices case study and Digital Transformation white paper on the Ardent website.

The DHS component is currently building the CMI pipeline into each of its major applications that maintain a microservices architecture. To date, five major applications have been integrated with CMI and more are in progress.

CMI can be configured for use in other agencies as well. With the proper knowledge and understanding of another agency’s environment and technology stack, CMI could be configured to help accelerate the creation of standardized microservices.

Federal agencies can acquire the CMI solution through Ardent on the NITAAC Best in Class Government-Wide Acquisition Contract, CIO-SP3 Small Business. This Best in Class vehicle allows for ease of use and accelerates outcomes for agencies.

NITAAC provides any Department of Defense or civilian agency with three Best in Class GWACs to meet virtually every IT need. The NITAAC pool of pre-qualified Contract Holders have assisted over 64 federal departments with their information technology efforts. To learn more view our Contract Holder Capabilities (/about/contract-holders-capabilities) page.