IBM said Peace Corps is deploying cloud-based capabilities — using Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) — from IBM to recruit volunteers to boost its talent management program.
The Peace Corps sends its volunteers — on two-year assignments — to develop sustainable solutions that address challenges in education, health, economic development, agriculture, environment and youth development in the world.
Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, nearly 220,000 Americans of all ages have served in 140 countries worldwide.
IT market research agency IDC says the federal government is expected to invest more than $9 billion in cloud computing by 2018.
As part of a 5-year deal, the Peace Corps is advancing its recruiting and talent management platform to include IBM Kenexa Talent Suite, a SaaS that will run on SoftLayer’s Federal cloud infrastructure in a hybrid environment integrating with applications that run internally at the Peace Corps.
In 2010, the Peace Corps selected Kenexa, which was acquired by IBM in 2012, to modernize its Volunteer Delivery System.
“Federal agencies are viewing cloud much more strategically than infrastructure alone,” said IBM U.S. Federal General Manager Anne Altman. “For the Peace Corps, it’s about engaging an audience that wants to actively participate in the volunteer application process and is accustomed to using new tools for such interactions.”
In December 2014, IDC named IBM a leader in U.S. Government private cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS).
Meanwhile, scientists from IBM Research and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) announced an open platform designed to support the creation of smartphone apps that can enable the blind to navigate their surroundings.
The IBM and CMU researchers used the platform to create a pilot app, called NavCog, that analyzes signals from Bluetooth beacons located along walkways and from smartphone sensors to enable users to move without human assistance, whether inside campus buildings or outdoors. The free NavCog app will be available on the App Store soon.