Cloud is much more than just a passing trend in the public sector, as government IT strategies have evolved and no longer allow for siloed, monolithic systems that lack interoperability and flexibility.
But why has cloud become such a major factor in the evolution of IT infrastructure across the global public sector? Many industry analysts attempt to answer this question by looking to the past.
Some point out that traditional IT projects typically struggle with agility and discipline, leading to unmet expectations, timeline slippage, project delays and budget overruns. Others focus on pure financials, pointing out that IT budgets are increasingly unable to support inefficient procurement models that build for peak conditions and suffer idle capacity.
However, it is every bit as important to consider future trends. Cloud models are clearly more agile and flexible and, if done right, allow IT managers to implement capacity on-demand and better match supply with future demand.
In the future, government policy around grand data sets will influence tax revenue and public safety. Infrastructures will become smarter, with embedded sensors delivering tremendous streams of data for analysis. Regulatory code will need to adapt to the complex legal environment in which we live, requiring sophisticated frameworks for analysis and early warning.
Cloud allows government agencies to realize cost savings, efficiencies and modernization and expand their existing infrastructures without having to rely on capital resources. Governments want shared services, automation and standardization and are increasingly issuing mandates that make cloud models the preferred model of implementation.
The key to government cloud adoption is the risk classification process and the assignment of workloads to the appropriate type of cloud deployment model - public, private or hybrid. For example, an ingress point for tax returns would have a much different risk profile than an interactive map of a public transport system. This risk classification process can be a challenging area for government agencies, which for years have had direct, hands-on access to their server farms.
As governments expand their use of cloud models for appropriately classified workloads, Savvis finds itself involved in a number of opportunities in the heart of a major government cloud - or G-cloud - initiatives around the world. For example, our contract with the U.S. General Services Administration allows us to provide cloud to federal, state and local government organizations. And in the
Savvis continues its cloud deployments in countries such as
Clearly, every sovereign nation has different approaches to cloud computing models. Countries like the
Governments all over the world are utilizing cloud to help transform the supply chain, improve government service and revolutionize public sector IT.
David Shacochis is vice president, global public sector, at Savvis.