Governance Considerations

Regardless of its implementation pace, IPv6 integration is not a single, isolated, network-centric project. It is an evolution of the IT environment that gives it a strategic dimension. The success of a strategic project depends on supporting guidelines and rules that span the entire organization at all its levels:

• Senior management visibility and support: A clear and consistent message of commitment from the senior management is essential to making sure that each group within the organization is prioritizing appropriately the IPv6-related activities.

• Enforcement: Adherence to the IPv6 strategy and meeting the project goals should be a measure of the organizational, group, and individual performance.

• Cross-functional coordination: All groups within the organization must collaborate in addressing mutual dependencies with respect to IPv6 integration.

• Communicate frequently at all levels: Continued communication on the IPv6 adoption topic reinforces the expressed importance placed on the project and enables its progress to be tracked closely.

• Make IPv6 a natural part of other activities: Raise awareness about IPv6. Reward IPv6-related achievements and innovation.

Organizational Leadership

Effective governance requires a mix of actively engaged senior leadership, champions, early adopters, and policy enforcers. IPv6 champions must be identified throughout the organization in each of these areas.

NOTE Bechtel discussed IPv6 internally for a few years before making the transition commitment in late 2004 at the senior management level. At that point, senior managers felt that there were sufficient business drivers and that IPv6 technology and supported products had reached the required level of maturity and global industry adoption. Bechtel's federal global business unit was identified as the organization with the highest immediate need, based in part on the 2003 DoD mandate. Over the following two years, Bechtel has identified additional IPv6 opportunities. Through this process, Bechtel tied the need and pace of IPv6 adoption to its business-related IT strategic planning. The approach is parallel in several ways to the introduction and development of web technologies over the last 13+ years. IPv6 continues to be part of the IT planning process. Senior management buy-in and support, senior IT leadership oversight, and the other critical success factors identified previously made a significant difference in the progress of the IPv6 adoption project.

Enforcing the governance and guidelines is essential with the many interdependencies that characterize the IT environment. Thus, it is important to highlight the role of gatekeepers in ensuring the proper and complete implementation of IPv6-related requirements.

As shown in Figure 6-3, gatekeepers play a significant role in enforcing the implementation of the IPv6 policies in the functional groups (Development and Engineering, Quality Assurance and Configuration Management, Production) by tracking the handover process between these groups.

Figure 6-3 Role of Gatekeepers in the Consistent and Optimal Integration of IPv6

Well-defined IPv6 entrance and delivery criteria help its organic integration throughout the IT environment.

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