Water agency builds “borderless” infrastructure to improve collaboration

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California Natural Resources Agency manages the state’s natural resources, including water. One of its largest departments is the Department of Water Resources (DWR), with about 3,500 employees. DWR supplies and manages the water delivery systems, provides flood protection through improvement of levees, inspects 1,200 dams and helps coordinate the state’s integrated water management.

To accomplish those tasks, department personnel need to access and manipulate large data sets to model the effects of the environment on the water system. “Many of our missions require close collaboration with other federal, state, and local government organizations, subject matter experts, and the people of California,” says CEO Tim Garza.

But DWR had limited ability to share data outside the department, which made it difficult to make timely decisions.

The agency wanted a new data center infrastructure that could adapt easily to support changing business needs. The immediate need was for borderless collaboration with all stakeholders, including local, state and federal government and private sector entities.

The solution the agency chose was a borderless infrastructure based on Council member Cisco’s Data Center Business Advantage solutions and Cisco’s planning, design and implementation services.

Results enabled secure collaboration by creating 20 distinct security zones, reduced total cost of ownership for the network by 30% and accelerated network performance by 40%.