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Public Policy and Administration


Lydia L. Forsythe


After the events of September 11, 2001, inadequacies in how government organizations and agencies shared knowledge and communication with defense mission partners became readily apparent. A reasonable U.S. government information technology expectation is the integrated use of mobile phones across organizations and agencies. Yet, it is difficult to meet this expectation, as the provisioning process for mobile devices can be different for each government organization or agency. The Department of Commerce National Institute of Standards and Technology does not set provisioning standards, and organizations and agencies determine policies tailored to their particular needs. Using Schein's theory on organizational culture, the focus of this phenomenological study was to explore the Mobility provisioning process from the experiences of government customer support personnel. Eleven personnel responded to 10 semistructured interview questions derived from the research question. The data were manually transcribed and then coded, arranged, and analyzed using a software tool. Three major themes emerged from the analyzed data: (a) expand communication with customers and leaders, (b) identify policy guidelines, and (c) streamline and centralize the process. Using these themes, recommendations include enhancing communication among stakeholders, provisioners, and Warfighters, soldiers in the field; implementing standardized user policies; and improving cross-€organization and cross-€agency provisioning processes. Social change actions include increasing mobility provisioning efficiencies among provisioners, which not only saves time and money, but also provides Warfighters with affordable, dependable, and reliable mobile communications systems.