Telecommunications and Network Management

272 FW 1
FWM Number
Originating Office
Information Resources and Technology Management

1.1 What is the purpose of this chapter? This chapter establishes the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) policies, responsibilities, and procedures for managing and using telecommunications and network systems, equipment, and services.

1.2 What are the objectives of this chapter? Our objectives are to ensure the Service’s telecommunications and network systems, services, and activities:

A. Contribute to employee and public safety,

B. Provide a reliable, cost-effective way to communicate telephonically to support our mission, and

C. Protect our mission-dependent data when it passes through a telecommunications network.

1.3 What is the scope of this chapter? This chapter applies to all employees who acquire, manage, and use telecommunications equipment and services.

1.4 What are the authorities for this chapter?

A. Executive Order 13011, Federal Information Technology (IT).

B. Clinger-Cohen Act, formerly known as the IT Management Reform Act of 1996 (ITMRA) (P.L. 104-106).

C. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-130, Management of Federal Information Resources.

D. Telecommunications Accessibility Enhancement Act of 1988, and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794).

E. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12101-12213).

F. 377 DM 1, Telecommunications Management.

G. 377 DM 2, Telecommunications Handbook.

H. 375 DM 19, IT Security Program.

I. E-Government Act [includes Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) (P.L. 107-347).

J. National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 54, Cyber Security and Monitoring (also known as HSPD-23).

K. OMB Memorandum M-08-05, The Trusted Internet Connection Initiative (TIC), November 2007.

L. Homeland Security’s Trusted Internet Connections (TIC) Reference Architecture Document V2.0.

M. Clarification to Telephone Use Policy (OCIO Directive 2005-013).

N. Appropriations, Telephone Installation, and Charges (31 U.S.C. 1348).

O. Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (5 U.S.C. 552a).

P. Secretarial Order 3309 - IT Management Functions and Establishment of Funding Authorities.

Q. Financial and Business Management System (FBMS) Technical Bulletin – Processing Information Technology Acquisitions in FBMS ACQ-3.

1.5 Who is responsible for telecommunications management for the Service? See Table 1-1 for a description of responsibilities.

Table 1-1: Responsibilities for telecommunications management

These employees….

Are responsible for…

A. The Director

Approving or declining to approve policy for telecommunications management.

B. Assistant Director - Information Resources and Technology Management (IRTM)

(1) Ensuring there is a policy for telecommunications and network management,

(2) Designating the Service’s Telecommunications Manager, and

(3) Implementing a program that ensures compliance with Departmental policies.

C. Chief, Branch of Communication Technology

(1) Implementing telecommunications policy, and

(2) Providing direction to the Telecommunications and Network Services Managers to help them implement the telecommunications and network services programs to meet the needs of the Service.

D. Telecommunications Manager

(1) Managing the telecommunications program, including Federal Technology Service (FTS) contract services, voice services, cellular services, video teleconferencing services, and equipment;

(2) Serving as the primary liaison between the Department and the Service for telecommunications matters;          

(3) Developing and planning national telecommunications requirements, including:

     (a) Helping to prepare the budget,

     (b) Reviewing and submitting requests for Departmental approvals, and

     (c) Recommending FTS Agency Representative(s) to Contracting Officer(s);

(4) Forecasting future telecommunications needs and costs;

(5) Reviewing the following requests for purchases of telecommunication equipment and systems and sending them to the Department’s Chief Information Officer (CIO) for approval:

     (a) Telephone systems,

     (b) Video conferencing systems and equipment, and

     (c) Voice over IP (VoIP) systems; and

(6) Serving as the liaison to the Department on cellular and mobile device strategic sourcing initiatives.

E. Designated Agency Representative (DAR) (usually the Telecommunications Manager)

(1) Serving as the point of contact for ordering FTS network services and features (the DAR is the only person in the Service who may place requests with the contractor);

(2) Overseeing acceptance, verification of usage, account reconciliation, monitoring of network quality, and escalation of complaints; and

(3) Maintaining a Servicewide inventory of FTS services and conducting a yearly inventory with the help of the Regional and local telecommunications contacts.

F. Network Services Manager

(1) Implementing and managing the Service’s data network, including Service Wide Area Network (SWAN), LAN to LAN, and remote access connections;

(2) Serving as the primary point of contact for network equipment and service issues, which includes acting as the primary liaison to the Department;

(3) Developing plans for Service data connections, including dedicated access, broadband (Internet Service Provider (ISP)) connections, and remote access connections;

(4) Helping with budget formulation and execution;

(5) Reviewing and sending requests to the Department for approval; and

(6) Coordinating all requests with IT security personnel before approval to ensure network security requirements are implemented.

G. Regional/Program Chief Technology Officers

(1) Providing oversight and direction to Regional Telecommunications and Network contacts;

(2) Ensuring all Regional and program telecommunications and networking services are in compliance with Departmental and Service policies;

(3) Approving or disapproving Regional/program requests for telecommunications and network equipment and services, and ensuring solutions are technically and economically sound; and

(4) Ensuring telecommunication and network requirements for their Regions/programs are included in the Service’s fiscal year IT Spend Plans.

H. Regional Telecommunications and Network Contacts

(1) Serving as the initial point of contact for field stations/offices for any telecommunications, network equipment, or FTS service issues;

(2) Helping field stations/offices develop technical approval requests for telecommunications system and equipment purchases;

(3) Supporting the DAR and field stations/offices when ordering and installing FTS services and telecommunications equipment;

(4) Maintaining a list of their Region’s local telecommunications contacts (see section 1.5I);

(5) Maintaining an inventory of their Region’s telecommunications equipment, Private Branch Exchange (PBX), VoIP systems,  local telephone services, and telephone numbers;

(6) Verifying FTS services by working with the Telecommunications Manager on the yearly inventory to  include calling cards, telephone numbers, 800 numbers, audio conferencing accounts, and Web conferencing accounts;

(7) Working with the Network Services Manager and the Branch of Communication Technology network staff to ensure secure, reliable data connections for each office and to resolve network issues;  

(8) Obtaining technical approval for network services and equipment from the Network Services Manager; and

(9) Maintaining an inventory of all SWAN and ISP connections, including circuit speeds, circuit IDs, providers, and circuit costs, and providing it once a year (by August 31st) to the Branch of Communication Technology staff and the Telecommunications and Network Services Managers.

I. Local Telecommunications Contacts

(1) Providing support and assistance to the DAR and their Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact;

(2) Maintaining the following information for the facility:

     (a) Detailed telecommunications requirements,

     (b) Technical system descriptions,

     (c) Telecommunications hardware inventory,

     (d) Contractor access to the facility, and

     (e) Records of telephone equipment, services, and directory listings;

(3) Ensuring required equipment is procured and installed and site preparations are complete before changing systems;

(4) Ordering local telephone service;

(5) Testing and verifying new services;

(6) Giving local employees information on the availability and proper use of telephone services; and

(7) Managing telephone services, including:

     (a) Coordinating requests for telephone services and maintenance,

     (b) Verifying accuracy of local telephone charges, and

     (c) If service is disconnected, notifying the service provider and the Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact about the disconnection.

1.6 How do field stations/offices buy telephone systems?

A. Business Case Analysis. To buy a telephone system, the Local Telecommunications Contact (LTC) must develop a business case analysis that:

(1) Describes why the proposed system is required,

(2) Includes a cost estimate for equipment and installation and a detailed description of the system’s capabilities (e.g., number of users, extensions, trunks, voicemail, etc.), and

(3) For VoIP systems, includes a detailed network diagram of the proposed system and a narrative describing how the proposed system will interface with the existing network.

B. Approvals. The LTC must send a request asking for approval, the business case analysis (including the proposed system diagram for VoIP systems), and the current telephone system inventory to the Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact. Installation and operation of all Service telecommunications and network systems must comply with Federal, Departmental, and Service security regulations and guidelines.

(1) The Regional contact sends the approval request to the Regional Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Regional review and concurrence and to the Service’s Telecommunications Manager for technical review and approval. 

(2) The Regional CTO sends requests that cost more than $3,000 through the Assistant Director – IRTM to the Department’s Chief Information Officer (CIO) for approval (see Secretarial Order 3309). All requests for IT equipment and systems must be in the Service’s IT Spend Plan before they can be purchased.

(3) After receiving approval, the LTC must follow contracting and procurement policy (see 301 FW 1-7) and FBMS procedures (see FBMS Technical Bulletin ACQ-3), to purchase the system. The LTC must ensure that staff upload the approval with the purchase request into FBMS.

C. Inventory. The LTC must update the local telecommunications system and services inventory whenever purchasing new equipment.

1.7 How often should telecommunications systems and equipment be replaced?

A. Because the lifecycle of most traditional telephone systems is generally 10 years, field stations/offices should plan to replace their systems at least every 10 years. VoIP systems are generally on a 6 to 8 year lifecycle.

B. Field stations/offices should start the planning process at least 3 years prior to replacement or purchase of telecommunications systems and equipment.

C. OMB Circular A-130 requires us to report budgetary cost information for replacement of telecommunications equipment.

(1) To meet this requirement, LTCs must send cost estimates for planned replacements or purchases to their Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact by February of each year for the following fiscal year.

(2) The Regional contact must send this information to the Telecommunications Manager for inclusion in the annual Capital Planning and Investment Control (CPIC) report that we send to OMB.

1.8 What are FTS 2000 and FTS telecommunications services?

A. FTS 2000 was the first Governmentwide contract for telecommunications services. FTS 2001 and Networx are the follow-on contracts. FTS services include:

(1) Voice and data services,

(2) Long distance,

(3) Calling cards,

(4) Audio conference accounts,

(5) Web conferencing, and

(6) Toll free services

B. We must use the FTS2000/FTS2001/Networx or future FTS contracts for long distance voice, data, and telecommunications requirements that are within the scope of FTS services.

C. The Project Leader or supervisor for the field station/office determines which services are needed to perform job functions and support mission requirements. (See Table 1-2 for procedures on ordering services and guidelines for who needs a calling card.)

D. The Service’s Headquarters or Regional Emergency Coordinators (see 090 FW 2) determine who can receive Government Emergency Telecommunications Service (GETS)/Wireless Priority Service (WPS). The Emergency Coordinator should send requests for GETS/WPS to the Telecommunications Manager through the Branch of Communication Technology (and their Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact, if appropriate).

1.9 How do field stations/offices set up local and long distance telephone service?

A. Local Service:

(1) The Project Leader/supervisor for the field station/office and the LTC must work together to order local telephone service that will meet the needs of the office. (For some field stations, the Project Leader may also be the LTC.)

(2) The LTC may order local service from the General Services Administration (GSA) or from a local telephone company.

B. Long Distance Service: Because we must use FTS contracts for long distance, the LTC must tell GSA or the local telephone company which long distance company the Department is using for FTS long distance and other services.

(1) If local telephone service is with GSA, no further action is necessary to get FTS long distance service.

(2) If the local telephone company supplies the service, then the LTC must place an FTS order for long distance and other services through the Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact (see section 1.10).

1.10 How do field stations/offices order FTS services?

A. Table 1-2 describes the steps for ordering FTS services.

Table 1-2: Ordering FTS services

For all services…

(1) The LTC sends a request for the service to the Regional Telecommunications and Network Contact. Requests must include FBMS WBS/cost center code, site name, site physical address, service requested, telephone demark information, local contact name, and contact information. 

(2) The Regional contact sends the request to the DAR.

(3) The DAR places the order with the FTS vendor.

(4) The FTS vendor processes the order.

(5) The DAR notifies the LTC when the service is ready to use.

Additional requirements (by service)

For calling cards…

(1) If needed, the Project Leader/supervisor requests calling cards through the LTC. Typically, we consider issuing calling cards to an employee if the employee:

     · Travels more than 2 weeks a year and does not have a Government-provided cellular device,

     · Regularly travels to a location where cellular service is not available, or

     · Teleworks and does not have a softphone (i.e., software on a computer that serves as a telephone) or Government-provided cellular phone.

(2) The LTC sends the request to the Regional contact, and the Regional contact sends the request to the DAR. The DAR places the order with the vendor.

(3) The vendor sends the card to the DAR. The DAR enters the card information into an inventory database, viewable by the Regional contact and LTC. The LTC and the Regional contact must maintain an accurate inventory and inform the DAR of any discrepancies.

(4) The DAR sends the card to the employee.

(5) Employees who use calling cards are responsible for all charges incurred. They must review call records to ensure the calls were for official business. Employees should send charge disputes to their Regional contact, who will send them to the DAR. The DAR sends a dispute of charges to the FTS provider for reimbursement.

(6) The LTC must collect and cancel cards when employees no longer need them. LTCs should send requests to cancel cards to their Regional contacts.

For long distance and toll free services…

(1) The LTC must send the telephone numbers to the Regional contact with the request for service. The Regional contact works with the DAR to get the service.

(2) When the service is implemented, the DAR sends the LTC a completion notice with a request to test the line.

For audio and Web conferencing accounts…

(1) The LTC works with the Regional contact to make a request to the DAR.

(2) When the request is processed, the DAR sends authorization codes to the Regional contact and the LTC.

(3) The DAR also coordinates with the vendor and the LTC to activate the account.

B. To cancel an FTS service, the LTC must send a request through the Regional contact to the DAR. The DAR sends the cancellation order to the vendor.

C. For more information on ordering procedures and the current FTS vendor, go to the Branch of Communication Technology’s Intranet Web site.

1.11 What are the types of data connections, and how do field stations/offices order them? There are two types of data connections—SWAN and ISP connections. All data connections and circuits must be TIC compliant and be procured using only Department-provided contract vehicles. Regions must obtain approval from the Network Services Manager for any data connection or circuit, and provide network diagrams that show the LAN configuration and each device that is connected to the WAN for each office. No physical device or network application may be introduced onto the WAN infrastructure without prior approval. This includes network monitoring tools, traffic shaping tools, proxies, backup appliances, optimizers, firewalls, virtual hosting platforms/clients, wireless devices, and any tool that inspects or passes packets.

A. SWAN connections:

(1) These are provided through the Department’s Enterprise Services Network (ESN). ESN is the Department-managed WAN that connects the Service’s offices with high-speed circuits and data services we order through the FTS contract. Field stations/offices should work with their Regional Telecommunications and Network Contacts to set up SWAN connections. 

(2) The Regional contact must send a request to the Network Services Manager for a SWAN connection or LAN-to-LAN connection.

(3) The Network Services Manager sends a change request via Remedy (i.e., the ESN change management database) to ESN for the data connection.

(4) The network team coordinates the installation and data service implementation with the FTS vendor, Regional contact, and the field station/office.

(5) For a list of Regional contacts and ordering procedures, see the Branch of Communication Technology’s Intranet Web site.

B. ISP connections: ISP connections are typically lower speed satellite, cable, or DSL connections. Once approved by IRTM, field stations/offices should order ISP services in coordination with the Regional contact. The network diagram that sites must provide to show the configuration of the LAN must also show all connections to the ISP-provided router and Departmental network devices.

C. Network-attached devices and applications: To purchase and install a network-attached device or application, the LTC and Regional contact must follow the same approval process as for a SWAN circuit.

(1) The Regional contact sends an approval request to the Network Services Manager.

(2) The Network Services Manager approves or disapproves the request based on Departmental and Service policy and technical compatibility. 

(3) Before installation of an approved device or application, the Regional Information Technology Security Manager (RITSM ) must update the Authorization & Accreditation (A&A) paperwork to document the change in the A&A boundary.

1.12 How does the Service provide telephone access for the hearing and speech impaired?

A. We must provide telecommunications access to hearing and speech-impaired individuals when the Project Leader or supervisor identifies a need for it (also see 270 FW 4, Making Electronic and Information Technology Accessible).

B. The Project Leader/supervisor is responsible for supplying a reasonable accommodation for employees to perform work-related activities. Equipment and services can be procured through the GSA Federal Relay contract.

C. When a Project Leader/supervisor identifies such a need, we must:

(1) Include specifications for accessibility in solicitations for service, and

(2) Display in our buildings or offices the standard logo specified by GSA that indicates Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD) or TDD-related equipment is available.

D. The Telecommunications Manager must:

(1) Provide access numbers to GSA’s Technical Services Division so that GSA can include that information in the Federal TDD directory, and

(2) Ensure that access numbers for TDD and TDD-related devices are published in Service telephone directories.

1.13 How do employees get cell phones, Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), or wireless devices?

A. An employee must get approval from his/her/their supervisor before buying a cell phone, PDA, or wireless device and service for official Government use. It is the supervisor’s responsibility to determine if an employee needs a cellular, wireless device, or PDA to perform his/her/their job.

B. Field stations/offices may use the GSA schedule to buy cellular devices and plans. 

1.14 Can an employee make personal calls from an office phone or a Government cell phone?

A. Yes. Employees may use their Government phones for personal calls:

(1) On a limited basis (e.g., scheduling appointments, informing family members of schedule changes, calling home while on travel, etc.), and

(2) Only if it is not an additional cost to the Government.

B. See the Department’s Telephone Use Policy online for detailed information about the limits of personal use on Government telephones.

Amended by Decision Memorandum, “Approval of Revisions to ~350 Directives to Remove Gender-Specific Pronouns,” 6/22/2022