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Cloud Computing Confusion: Inconsistent Terminology is Muddying the Water

The federal cloud computing market is nothing if not confusing. Despite the best efforts of technical personnel at the National Institute of Standards and Technology to define what cloud is, the cloud market has come to encompass goods and services well beyond the narrow definitions of Infrastructure, Platform, and Software-as-a-Service. Understanding this is important for industry, because the complexity of the cloud market means finding business opportunities is that much harder.

Take for example the booming business of migrating agency datasets to big hosting companies like Amazon Web Services. AWS provides the cloud (the IaaS), but another vendor does the migration work. In this context, what part of the work should be considered cloud computing? The hosting services provided by AWS are clearly cloud, as defined by the NIST, but without the data migration work done by the industry partner, AWS provides nothing. The industry partner is a critical piece of the cloud puzzle, so should the migration work not also be considered part of the cloud market?

At Deltek, we call these types of services “cloud enabling” and we consider them to be part of the cloud computing paradigm. Therefore, we include spending on those services in our analysis of the federal cloud market. So, if cloud enabling services fit into a broader definition of the market, is your business development team searching for opportunities to do this kind of work?

Services like data migration are one shade of gray among many. An even more challenging trend that has emerged within the last couple of years is the use of the term “cloud” to describe a network of communications hardware and switches. This term first came to my attention in the early stages of the Defense Department’s implementation of multi-protocol label switching routers for the Joint Information Environment. Referred to as an MPLS cloud, the “cloudiness” of the MPLS gear appears to refer to the scalability of the hardware, but does the MPLS cloud really fit the definitions of cloud provided by NIST? The DoD is now taking the cloud analogy one step further, referring to sensor arrays as clouds. Are sensor arrays cloud computing? Their description as cloud confuses the issue quite a bit.

So What?

Seeking clarity in the terminology is not simply the complaint of a picky analyst. Consider the following. Using cloud terms for things that are not cloud has a serious impact on our understanding of the market and the size of the business opportunity related to cloud. For example, the Federal Aviation Administration has requested $24.3 million in FY 2016 for its Terminal Voice Switch Replacement program. The TVSR “replaces aging and obsolete voice switches” related to air traffic control. These switches are basically boxes of hardware that enable the use of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).

In its FY 2016 IT budget request, the Department of Transportation requested $71.5 million for cloud computing. The question must be asked, however, if a collection of FAA switching hardware constitutes a cloud. If so, then cloud service providers may consider the size of the DOT cloud business opportunity to be $71.5 million. If not, the FY 2016 cloud opportunity at DOT is $47.2 million.

Company leadership uses these figures to set expectations for the business opportunity available to their sales teams. Let’s say your company’s team is expected to capture 5% of the total cloud spend at the DOT and compensation levels are set accordingly. Does that total equal $3.5 million (5% of $71.5 million) or $2.35 million (5% of $47.2 million)? The distinction matters if your company doesn’t happen to sell the switching equipment that the DOT calls cloud.

The correct use of terminology is important because the definition of cloud computing informs business decisions. If the definition is flawed, the resulting decision is as well. If that matters to your sales team and bottom line, you can see why the terminology matters and why clearing up the confusion is relevant.

 

Takeaways from the New Army Cloud Computing Strategy

The Army Office of the Chief Information Officer/G-6 recently released its enterprise cloud computing strategy outlining the service’s concept for using cloud computing in the years ahead. The Army Cloud Computing Strategy (ACCS) reveals that the service remains committed to several basic steps that will enable it to deliver cloud-based capabilities across the enterprise.  These steps include:

  • Continuing to enhance the throughput capacity of its networks by implementing multi-protocol label switching routers.
  • Selecting applications that will either be killed or selected for migration to a cloud-based environment.
  • Utilizing data center services provided by the Defense Information Systems Agency to the furthest extent possible.
  • Expanding the development and deployment of cloud-based technologies for disconnected and tactical environments.
  • Ruthlessly standardizing IT hardware on common standards that comply with the Army’s various Common Operating Environments.
  • Implementing the governance processes and procedures necessary for selecting cloud services appropriate to the mission requirement being fulfilled.

In addition to formalizing the foundational aspects for Army’s adoption of cloud, the ACCS makes several things clear about the Army’s intended use of cloud that have implications for the acquisition of those services in the future.

First, cloud computing adoption in the Army will be overseen by the Army Application Migration Business Office – Product Director Enterprise Computing at the Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems. PD EC has been authorized to assist commands with the system and procurement planning necessary for moving applications to the cloud, meaning that vendors should keep close tabs on what’s happening there. It is worth thinking about how Army customers will acquire cloud services with PD EC designated as the coordinating organization. The acquisition of enterprise technology services is PEO EIS’ primary function, strongly suggesting that PD EC will either put a multiple award contract in place to provide vendor migration and other cloud services, or it will use vehicles that are pending and/or are already in place across government.

In this context the follow-on to IT Enterprise Solutions – 2 Services looms large. Not only are PEO EIS vehicles mandated for Army customers, the PEO is also looking for ways to streamline its contract operations. Adding cloud to the services provided by ITES vendors would effectively kill two birds with one stone by using a vehicle already in the process of being competed for the work. This said, the award of ITES-3S is a long way off and protests are guaranteed to hold it up even longer. PD EC is therefore likely to use other procurement tools, like GSA’s IT 70, the Alliant contracts, and/or a blanket purchase agreement to fulfill cloud requirements.

The second revelation from the ACCS is the first detailed listing I’ve seen of the types of systems that the DoD classifies as having a “low” data impact level. These systems, including testing and development efforts, library systems, and public websites are classified at data impact level 2 and are the most likely to be moved to the cloud first. After these systems, the bar rises fairly quickly to data impact level 4 for many training systems, morale systems, and lodging systems.

In short, being certified at the data impact “low” level isn’t likely to generate vendors much cloud business at the DoD. It is much more preferable to be certified at the moderate and high levels of 4 and above.  That is where the real money will be.

 

2020 Census Needs Investment in Enabling Technology and Infrastructure Requirements

Preparations for the 2020 Decennial Census are a key factor shaping the Census Bureau’s budget. Plans for the 2020 Census aim to drive cost efficiencies by leveraging lessons learned and improving census procedures. FY2015 marked the launch of the second phase of R&D for the effort, which aims to overhaul the census process and achieve dramatic cost savings through technology implementation and process updates. A recent review of the Census Bureau’s plans highlights technology hurdles that may provide business opportunities for contractors. 

The Census Bureau approach to the 2020 Census intends to complete the survey for the same or less cost than 2010. So far, the efforts have encountered a number of planning hurdles, in particular challenges producing reliable schedules and cost inaccuracies. Insufficiently resolved issues underlying these problems will continues to be plague progress as work moves along with the second phase of research, testing, and operational development. The bureau’s FY 2016 discretionary budget request included $1.5 billion to support research, development, and implementation of the 2020 Census. The bureau’s information technology budget has $199 million slated for undertakings at this phase, an increase of 169% over FY 2015 enacted levels. Further, all of the FY 2016 funds are expected to support development, modification, and enhancement activities. All in all, just over 91% of the FY 2016 investment is potentially contractor addressable (based on the portion of resources that provides associated government personnel). 

Among other activities, these funds are intended to help roll out an internet response option for collecting enumeration data. In order to provide an option for collecting self-responses from households via the internet, the Census Bureau needs to make a number of investments. These enabling capabilities include designing and developing an application for internet response, developing and acquiring IT infrastructure to support the large volume of data processing and storage, and planning communication and outreach strategies to facilitate households’ submission of responses via the internet. Preliminary cost estimates for the internet response were calculated at $73 million, but these figures were deemed unreliable for not conforming to best practices. Issues included not updating the estimates to reflect changes related to the option that occurred since 2011. Another snag is the lack of time frames for decisions around implementation of cloud computing solutions. As a result of these problems, additional concerns are being raised about the estimated cost savings that is expected to result from these efforts. With field tests for various components anticipated during the fall of 2015, addressing these underlying complications will be necessary in order for the program to continue on schedule.

Originally published for Federal Industry Analysis: Analysts Perspectives Blog. Stay ahead of the competition by discovering more about GovWinIQ. Follow me on twitter @FIAGovWin.

 

Commerce Department Looks to Modernize IT by Sharing

The Commerce Department’s CIO, Steve Cooper, has called out three focus areas for technology priorities: shared services, infrastructure, and modernizing the department’s technology strategy. Implementation of shared services will have a palpable impact on contracting, since the federal agency is considering a broker model to deliver services and achieve cost savings. 

The Department of Commerce has established four working groups targeting opportunities to implement shared services within technology, finance, human resources, and acquisition. The aim of these groups is to identify capabilities within those lanes to have delivered by a set of shared service providers. The department will likely stand up a shared service broker, an internal organization that will be responsible for selecting and managing providers, service agreements, and performance. By focusing shared services for commodity technologies and capabilities, bureaus will be able to free up resources to deliver greater value to mission activities. 

According to a recent interview with Commerce's CIO, the acquisition approach has yet to be determined. One potential option will be to pursue shared services as a joint effort along with other functional areas. The other option would treat these services independently. While bureau leadership is in favor of more broadly adopting a shared service model, none of the bureau CIOs have volunteered to take on the responsibilities of being the provider. This presents an opportunity for vendors to fill the role. A request for information (RFI) is expected out by the end of the year, which will then lead to a request for proposals (RFP) for the selected services. Since the leadership consensus across Commerce’s CIOs is inclined toward testing out shared service models sooner rather than later, service providers should watch for upcoming opportunities. In the short term, an RFI and RFP are expected for video teleconferencing and audio conferencing. 

Additional direction for efforts related to shared services and cloud services implementation are covered in the department’s enterprise transformation roadmap. Other areas to monitor for opportunities at Commerce include technology infrastructure modernization, like secure wireless.

 

Originally published for Federal Industry Analysis: Analysts Perspectives Blog. Stay ahead of the competition by discovering more about GovWinIQ. Follow me on twitter @FIAGovWin.

 

What Agencies Really Spend on Cloud: A Case Study

Several years ago, Deltek’s Federal Industry Analysis team developed a sophisticated system for estimating what the actual federal information technology budget is every year. FIA did this because the figures released by the Office of Management and Budget capture only a portion of yearly IT spending, meaning government contractors had only part of the picture to work with when it came time to set strategic goals. The deficiencies in OMB-provided estimates on cloud computing spending are no different than the overall IT figures. They also don’t capture everything that is being spent, leading vendors to develop flawed assumptions about where money is going toward cloud efforts.

Basing strategic goals on the estimates provided by federal agencies is a big unstated risk to government contractors. Bid and proposal dollars may be pushed in the wrong direction, sales targets may be set unrealistically high/low, etc., and yet these kinds of decisions are made all the time using the government’s partial data. How far off are the government figures when it comes to spending on cloud?  Let’s look at an example.

According to the Department of the Interior, it spent approximately $11.4 million on cloud services in FY 2014. The programs on which the money was spent are:

So far so good, right? Sure, however, the numbers you see are only part of the picture. According to data from Deltek’s Cloud Computing Database the actual amount that DOI customers spent on cloud services in FY 2014 was at least $21.6 million; $10 million more than was reported by the DOI. The table below shows these investments.

Comparing the two tables we can see that the investments listed in table one don’t match those in table two. This is because DOI contracting personnel reported spending data by service rendered (table two), not by investment title. It follows, therefore, that an investment called “Cloud Hosting & Support Services” could related to one of the program investments mentioned above.

The point of this exercise is to offer a word of warning when it comes to strategic planning. The fact is that the IT spending data provided by federal agencies is incomplete, meaning it can strongly skew our view of where a respective agency’s IT investment dollars are going. Understanding this can make the difference between setting realistic and unrealistic goals, so having the right tools is critical for making the best possible decisions.

 

Opportunities for Cloud Providers in the FY 2016 Budget Request

As part of the President’s Budget Request for Fiscal Year 2016, the Office of Management and Budget released figures for spending on cloud computing that agencies anticipate they will make.  The figures released this year don’t provide the same granularity into spending on service delivery types and deployment models that the same data has provided in past years.  The data does, however, more closely align with spending on other categories of information technology investments in that it has been divided into operations and maintenance (O&M) and development, modernization, and enhancement categories (DME).  Putting spending (FY 2015 estimated and FY 2016 forecast) into O&M and DME buckets helps OMB understand the percentage of overall agency IT dollars that are going into cloud vs. other types of investments. It also helps industry understand where new investments are being made versus spending on steady state programs.

Top Ten Agencies Forecast to Spend on Cloud in FY 2016

Here is a list of the top ten federal agencies by forecast cloud spending in FY 2016. Keep in mind that only Civilian sector agencies were included in the data as the Department of Defense has not yet released detailed information for FY 2016.

The spending forecast in this chart totals just north of $2.4B, representing only a small percentage of what agencies spend annually on IT.  Of the agencies listed, the surprises that stick out to me are Labor and the Office of Personnel Management.  Both of these agencies are small compared to the agencies around them, especially Homeland Security and Treasury, and yet they intend to spend considerable amounts of money on cloud.

Where the New Dollars Are

How much of this spending will be new dollars?  The chart below illustrates these forecast totals in terms of O&M and DME.

As we can see, the forecast spending picture takes on a different flavor once we know where new investment is intended.  From this perspective Labor remains an attractive target for business development efforts; OPM less so.  It is Commerce, though, which emerges as the greenest field of all.

Labor and Commerce: Green Fields for Cloud Providers in FY 2016

The graph below shows the four organizations in the Department of Labor where DME (i.e., new) dollars are forecast to be spent on cloud computing in FY 2016.

The specific programs in each organization slated to receive this funding are:

Departmental Management

  • Digital Government Integrated Platform (DGIP) - $84M
  • Enterprise Consolidated Network (ECN) - $17M                                                                                                                
  • Customer Service Modernization Program (CSMP) - $1M
  • Integrated Acquisition Environment - $1M
  • National Core Financial Management System (Shared service provided by the Department Of Transportation) - $8M

Wage & Hour Division

  • Strategic Enforcement Achieves Compliance System (SEACS) & Prevailing Wage System (PWS) - $3M

Employment & Training Administration

  • ETA BPM IT Modernization - $1M

Mine Safety and Health Administration

  • MSHA Internet/Intranet Maintenance - $1M

At the Department of Commerce the following organizations forecast spending DME dollars on cloud computing in FY 2016.

The specific programs in each organization slated to receive DME funding are:

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

  • USPTO Patent End-to-End 2 (PE2E-2) - $87M
  • USPTO Network and Security Infrastructure II (NSI-2) - $24M
  • USPTO Trademark Next Generation 2 (TMNG-2) - $9M
  • USPTO Fee Processing Next Generation (FPNG) - $8M
  • USPTO Consolidated Financial System (CFS) - $8M
  • USPTO Dissemination Capability (DC) - $6M

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

  • NOAA/NWS Integrated Dissemination Program - (IDP) - $4M

Bureau of the Census

  • Census IT Infrastructure - $3M

Departmental Management

  • BusinessUSA - $2M

Department of Commerce

  • Commerce Business Application Solutions (BAS) - $1M

Despite the allocation of new dollars for cloud efforts at the USPTO, the Next Generation requirements are almost certain to be fulfilled under the Software Development Integration and Testing – Next Generation (GovWin IQ Opp #37269) and SDI-NG for Small Business (GovWin IQ Opp #63628) contracts awarded in 2011. Work for the other efforts may remain in play.

 

Buying Services as a Commodity: The DoD’s New Approach to Cloud Computing

In mid-January, the Defense Information Systems Agency released new security requirements for companies seeking to provide cloud services to Defense customers.  Industry has welcomed the Department of Defense’s new approach because it promises to greatly increase the department’s use of commercial cloud computing.  In 2015 and beyond the DoD will indeed buy more cloud services from commercial sources.  This business will, however, come at a price, because the new approach also enables Defense customers to buy cloud services as a commodity.

Reading through the guidelines it becomes clear that DISA and the DoD OCIO are putting into place a cloud-buying system that provides more than a security framework; it also standardizes to the furthest extent possible the offerings that vendors can provide.

The guidance states that DISA will categorize vendor offerings according to National Institute of Standards and Technology definitions for service delivery and deployment model.  Vendors will be required to provide DISA with clear definitions of the service delivery and deployment model types that fit their solution.  If vendors do not provide this information, DISA will define the vendor’s offering for them.  The standardized offerings will then be listed in a DoD Cloud Services Catalog that Defense customers can use to select the service they need/want.

The catalog approach has benefits for Defense customers because it simplifies the process they can use to compare commercial cloud services.  For example, an Army program manager wants to use a SaaS-based records management capability in a public cloud environment for low impact data.  Instructed to procure the capability at the lowest possible price, the PM peruses the DoD Cloud Catalog and finds several vendors with an appropriate offering.  All of the commercial offerings are SaaS-based, in a public cloud, are Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program compliant at the necessary data impact level, and promise the levels of confidentiality, integrity, and availability that the project requires.  Who does the Army program manager choose?

If you said the one that costs the least and is technically acceptable, give yourself a pat on the back.  LPTA is the result of competitions carried out in a standardized procurement environment.

What DISA and the DoD OCIO have done with the guidelines is implement a commodity-based procurement approach to IT services requirements. Presented with a catalog of approved cloud services neatly homogenized into discreet categories, Defense customers will look for vendors that have the offering they need.  Once they have identified a number of potential vendors, proposals received can be evaluated based solely on price.  Functionality, security, and cloud types have all been vetted and pre-approved.  There is no need to conduct a best value competition because most of the variables inherent to best value have already been vetted as part of its inclusion in the DOD Cloud Catalog.

In short, cloud services have been commoditized, fulfilling a long-held dream for government buyers of information technology.

 

Defense Cloud Security Guidance Aims to Empower Military Services

Mid January 2015, Defense Department’s (DOD) Defense Information Services Agency (DISA) released guidance for use of commercial and non-DOD cloud providers within the DOD.

Since the DISA publication is a Security Requirements Guide (SRG), it offers non-product specific requirements to mitigate risks associated with commonly encountered IT system vulnerabilities. While SRGs provide high level direction, Security Technical Implementation Guides (STIGs) offer product-specific details for validating, attaining, and maintaining compliance with the SRG requirements.

The previously published Cloud Security Model outlined 6 Information Impact Levels. Although the DOD cloud computing SRG has reduced the number to 4 impact levels, the numeric designators remain consistent with the previously published model. DOD provisional risk assessments for cloud services focus on evaluating the requirements for the impact levels at which a cloud service offering is supported by a provider.  Provisional authorization is then leveraged by the mission owner in granting authority to operate (ATO) for mission systems operating in the cloud.

The security control baseline for all levels aligns with the FedRAMP moderate baseline’s definition for confidentiality and integrity. This shift from high confidentiality and high integrity intends to support the categorization of customer systems targeted to be deployed to commercial CSP facilities. The 15 December 2014 CIO memo called out FedRAMP as the minimum security baseline for all DOD cloud services and advised that defense components “may host unclassified DOD information that has been publicly released on FedRAMP approved cloud services.”

The DISA cloud computing SRG covers systems up to the Secret level of classification. Services running at a classification levels above secret, including compartmented information, are governed by other policies and fall outside the scope of the guidance DISA released. General Service Administration’s (GSA) Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) aims to have a cloud security baseline established for FISMA high requirements within the next six months. DISA plans to consider incorporating the FedRAMP High Baseline into its guidance once it becomes available.

Ultimately, CSPs have three paths to choose from in pursuing a DOD provisional authorization. One option is to achieve a provisional authorization through FedRAMP’s Joint Authorization Board (JAB). Another option is to achieve FedRAMP Agency ATO by completing the FedRAMP compliance process as well as meeting any additional security control requirements from the authorizing agency. The third option is for a system to be comply with requirements fo DOD Self-Assessed Provisional Authorization. The concept of FedRAMP Plus (FedRAMP+) applies to situations where an agency has specific security requirements beyond the FedRAMP baseline. Within the DOD SRG, these additional security controls and requirements are necessary to meet and assure DOD’s mission requirements.

Like FedRAMP’s intention to allow agencies to take a greater role in steering commercial cloud authorizations, DISA’s guidance will empower the military services to procure their own solutions and leverage the government’s work through FedRAMP. Considering the trend toward shared service adoption, after a cloud solution is adopted by one service branch, other defense components may look to implement FedRAMP+ solutions or DISA may evaluate that solution for potential formal shared service use.

 

Originally published for Federal Industry Analysis: Analysts Perspectives Blog. Stay ahead of the competition by discovering more about GovWinIQ. Follow me on twitter @FIAGovWin.

Federal Cloud Security Program Charts Course for Ramp Up

The program in charge of the government's cloud security baseline has outlined its plan to target key issues in the months ahead.

It’s been several years since the government started to address challenges around cloud security by establishing a cloud security baseline. The General Service Administration’s (GSA) Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) set out with the goal to “do once, use many times” when it comes to security authorizations. During the first two years of FedRAMP activities, achievements:

-       More than 50 Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) are engaged in the FedRAMP process.

-       27 CSPs have completed the FedRAMP compliance process

-       These authorizations address over 160 FISMA implementations

-       The Third Party Assessment Organization (3PAO) accreditation program has been established and 31 independent auditors have received accreditation. Two thirds of these auditors are small businesses.

-       Nearly every federal agency is participating in FedRAMP.

Mid December 2014, FedRAMP revealed its new logo and program roadmap for the next two years. The document outlines the program’s priorities. The goals include:

1)    Increase stakeholder engagement

o    Expand agency implementation of FedRAMP.

o    Increase cross-agency collaboration

o    Promote greater understanding of the FedRAMP

2)    Improve efficiencies

o    Greater consistency and quality of 3PAO assessments and deliverables

o    Create flexible framework for data and workflow management

o    Align with and leverage existing security standards

3)    Continue to adapt

o    Continuous Monitoring will advance and evolve

o    Establish additional baselines

o    Integrate further with cybersecurity initiatives and contribute to policy reform 

Over the next six months, program activities in pursuit of these objectives will include establishing a baseline for FedRAMP use across the federal government, provide implementation guidance for agency authority to operate (ATO), outline multi-agency authorization methodology, launch an online training program, re-launch the FedRAMP.gov website, collaborate with the Office of Management and Budget and Office of Federal Procurement Policy to develop and publish procurement guidance, release a draft baseline for FISMA high security controls, and publish a roadmap for evolving continuous monitoring. The list goes on to include laying out guidelines for addressing inconsistencies in security assessments and providing key indicators for officials performing risk analysis. In line with these goals, just before the end of the year, FedRAMP issued updated guidance for agency review of authority to operate (ATO). As a whole, these initiatives lay the ground work that will be built up on over the next two years to make the cloud security program more robust. From its outset, FedRAMP described its gradual approach as “crawl, walk, run,” and the program does indeed seem to be picking up the pace.

 

Originally published for Federal Industry Analysis: Analysts Perspectives Blog. Stay ahead of the competition by discovering more about GovWinIQ. Follow me on twitter @FIAGovWin.

 

Federal Spending on Enterprise Business Systems Stays Strong

Ongoing initiatives to modernize government business systems offer prime examples of the ways federal agencies are looking to leverage technology transformation to achieve cost savings and efficiency gains. 

At end of 2014, Deltek’s Federal Industry Analysis team completed analysis of the market for business systems, identifying four segments characterized by different types of enterprise solutions. These four segments are financial management, asset and material management, human resources management, and administration and government management. 


Financial Management – The goal of improving financial management across the government has led to updated guidance for financial management system and shared services initiatives. Systems in this segment include solutions for payroll, accounting, invoice processing, budget formulation, and collections. This segment is expected to grow by 4.7% from FY 2014 to reach $3.4 billion in FY 2015.

 

Asset and Materials Management – Business systems for asset and materials management facilitate tighter asset control. Systems in this segment include solutions for supply chain management, inventory control, and fleet management. This segment remains flat from FY 2014 to 2015.

 

Human Resources Management – These systems support efforts to improve workforce performance. Solutions include personnel management, performance management, recruiting, and compensation management. This segment is expected to grow by 8.3% over FY 2014 levels to $3 billion.

 

Administration and Government Management – These systems include solutions for contract management, program management, customer relationship management, and travel management. Spending in this segment continues near FY2014 levels.

 

Deltek predicts contractor addressable spending on federal business systems to total $10.6 billion for FY 2015, increasing slightly over FY 2014 spending levels.  While many government efforts to improve business systems have been underway for some time, policies and legislative mandates continue to shape both the strategic direction and agency progress. For example, demand for improved business performance is underscored by reporting requirements and the need for increased financial transparency. The goal of reducing spending is also linked to efforts like adoption of shared services and plans to address auditability of financial systems. Ongoing budget pressure has increased the tendency to take an incremental approach to streamlining and enhancing government business operations.

 

Agencies making the largest investments in modernizations efforts include the Department of Defense, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs. Going forward, agencies are looking to continue advancing business system capabilities through mobile access and business analytics. The role of cloud environments is expected to expand, as only a small percentage of systems have completed migrated to cloud environments. Further exploration of the government initiatives targeting modernization of business systems is available in the recent Federal Industry Analysis report Federal Enterprise Business Systems, 2015.

 Originally published for Federal Industry Analysis: Analysts Perspectives Blog. Stay ahead of the competition by discovering more about GovWinIQ. Follow me on twitter @FIAGovWin.

 

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