ELECTRONIC MESSAGING AND VOICE MAIL
This appendix establishes policies and assigns responsibility for the management and use of electronic messaging systems and services in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Electronic Mail (E-Mail) is an integral component in the conducting of business within USDA and between USDA and other federal and private organizations. Across government, users have experienced frustration in transmitting E-Mails and attachments. The executives and users have higher expectations, volumes are increasing, some attachments are very large, and queue times are noticed by the users. The Chief Information Officer (CIO) Council, through the Interoperability Committee, is seeking pragmatic solutions to these and other common problems. To assist in defining the technical barriers and opportunities, the Federal E-Mail Postmasters Group was established to develop realistic service expectations, share best practices, develop service guidelines, and message delivery status expectations. As consensus is gained, USDA will continue to update E-Mail policies to reflect government-wide decisions and approaches.
As a result of the USDA Electronic Mail Modernization Program, USDA agencies agreed to the implementation of a USDA enterprise-wide infrastructure, the Departmental Electronic Mail Gateway Service, as the integrated E-Mail solution for interconnecting disparate E-Mail systems. The Program's benefits include: electronic mail protocol conversions between different proprietary E-Mail formats (e.g., GroupWise, cc:Mail), directory synchronization of E-Mail addresses, and standard X.400 message exchange.