Office of the Chief Information Officer

United States Department of Agriculture

Enterprise Services

An image of a computer cord that is coming from a cloud and is plugged into a computer


Enterprise Services is a collection of services that offer the customer wide reaching IT solutions with robust capability at attractive costs.  Messaging, Active Directory, and Enterprise Virtual Private Network management are all part of the service.


Service Description

Enterprise Messaging System – Cloud Services (EMS-CS) is an information technology communication service used by all USDA organizations. EMS-CS is managed by OCIO and the service is provided by Microsoft Corporation.

Enterprise Active Directory (EAD) is a network repository with logical structure much like a database. It is a reference system with attribute information about end user accounts and networked devices. The service will eventually be used by all USDA organizations and is managed by OCIO. The core Administration and Support are provided by CTS. Several optional services are available. Optional migration software will facilitate and simplify the migration of user objects from the agency Active Directory (AD) into the new EAD, and saves many person hours of effort through automation. Also available are Professional Services to support agencies in completing the tasks necessary for migration into the EAD, and to perform the actual migration including contract support for the Enterprise Messaging System – Cloud Services (Office 365) integration that must be accomplished after migration to the EAD.

Enterprise Virtual Private Network (eVPN) service provides the ability to have a secure telecommunication connection with the USDA backbone network, from the Internet. The ‘virtual network’ established for end user workstations via this service, is commonly used by teleworkers and by those with other mobility needs.

What is included

Enterprise Messaging Syst​em – Cloud Services (EMS-CS)

  • Outlook/Exchange: Standard email and calendar support provides 25 GB storage per end user mailbox. Attachments up to 50mb in size are supported. Also provided is the Lync client for instant messaging and presence, archiving, spam and virus filtering, the USDA Global Address List, distribution lists, resource accounts, and test accounts (resource and test accounts may not be logged-into or they will then incur charges). Outlook Web access is available on internal USDA networks. Quantities are determined by reporting from Active Directory. 
  • Live Communication Service: LiveMeeting Standard Edition service provides web and video conferencing with up to 250 end users. LiveMeeting Professional is available for use by USDA and additional licenses can be procured through the USDA volume licensing agreement. 
  • Mobile Messaging: Access to email and other Office applications via wireless mobile devices is supported. BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) is supported. The server licenses are included as a part of the Microsoft Office 365 service. Customers using BES are required to provide Client Access Licenses (CALs) and must keep this licensing current. 

SharePoint Service:

  • Base SharePoint Services are designed for internal USDA end users and have a 1GB per user storage limit. The use of this by individual users is already included in the EMS-CS Base Service Mail Box fee. 
  • Above Base SharePoint Services are available for customer application hosting and integration. These services will incur an additional fee.
  • Service Desk Support: USDA provides a Tier 2 Service desk with 24x7 availability. In the event that the Tier 2 Service Desk is unable to resolve the customer reported problem, Microsoft provides a Tier 3 Service Desk with 24x7 availability. Both service desks provide assistance for all of the above listed services.
  • Information Discovery and Litigation Support (IDLS): OCIO will support IDLS and other types of official requests for electronically stored information within EMS-CS such as searches or preservation. OGC will determine USDA EMS-CS data retention requirements. Fulfillment of IDLS requests may require additional customer fees. IDLS support activities are only for electronically stored information. Customer organizations are responsible for any maintenance associated with their legacy data. Customer organizations are responsible for making IDLS requests through OCIO eComply and are ultimately responsible for such activities.

Enterprise Active Directory (EAD)

  • Active Directory Infrastructure: The server infrastructure needed to support the Enterprise Active Directory.
  • Authentication Services: Kerberos V5 authentication services for Windows and Macintosh computers.
  • System Updates and Patches: Maintenance of current system updates and patches to ensure the environment remains current and secure.
  • System Redundancy: Multiple domain controllers will exist throughout the domain providing active redundancy throughout the enterprise.
  • System Backup/Restore: Routine backup of AD configurations and data to ensure timely restore in the event of a critical system failure.
  • Internal Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Services: EAD provides machine, Encrypting File System (EFS), SSL and code signing certificates.
  • Tier 3 Support: Tier 3 support is provided by the EAD staff under this agreement to agency IT staff.
  • Identity and Credential Access Management services included: A core connection to Enterprise Entitlements Management Service (EEMS) is provided to allow automated provisioning and de-provisioning.
  • Standardized Platform: The EAD provides a standardized platform for delivery of Enterprise Services such as cloud computing. This will significantly reduce the effort and cost of implementing future Enterprise Services.

Enterprise Virtual Private Network (EVPN)

  • Secure eVirtual Private Network (VPN) support with full network access.
  • Enterprise VPN solution and two-factor authentication.

How We Charge

  • Secure eVirtual Private Network (VPN) support with full network access.
  • Enterprise VPN solution and two-factor authentication.
Service Activity Units
Enterprise Active Directory

# Mailboxes

Enterprise Messaging System - Cloud Services

# Mailboxes

Enterprise Virtual Private Network

# Mailboxes

Service Level Metrics

Measure Target SLA
Exchange (Cloud): Percentage of hours of email infrastructure server service. This includes Mobile Messaging device connectivity.

Sun-Sat, 0000-2359


Live Meeting Availability (Cloud): Percentage of hours of Live Meeting infrastructure server service.

Sun-Sat, 0000-2359


SharePoint Availability (Cloud): Percentage of hours of Live Meeting infrastructure server service.

Sun-Sat, 0000-2359

Enterprise Active Directory Service Availability

Sun-Sat, 0000-2359


Cost Savings Tips

  • Use of Live Communication Service can reduce the need for travel expenditures.
  • Use resource accounts and shared account features of Enterprise Messaging System – Cloud Services to enable better office collaboration and coordination.
  • Consistent message retention and discovery is provided at the Department level.
  • Personal archives can help keep mailbox sizes low.
  • Enterprise Messaging System – Cloud Services as improved document storage and greater security.
  • Use Fax2Mail with Enterprise Messaging System – Cloud Services to reduce the cost of maintaining stand-alone fax hardware and telecommunication lines.