Federal government departments are currently individually responsible for procuring end-user IT devices for their employees—including computers, operating software, and peripherals such as printers—as well as providing the associated IT support services. Duplication of effort in these activities has resulted in the Government spending significantly more than the private sector.
By moving away from each department independently managing these activities, there are opportunities to drive economies of scale, achieve savings for taxpayers and improve service.
Data center consolidation is an increasingly popular approach to achieving cost savings and other efficiencies in state and local government, but the actual process of shutting down and relocating numerous hardware and software components can create complex challenges across multiple dimensions. Many consolidation projects have suffered cost overruns, delays and disappointing results, which are driven by hidden interdependencies, unforeseen requirements, and a failure to effectively coordinate activities with stakeholders. Because data center consolidation is a once-in-a-career event for most IT professionals, organizations often lack the internal expertise to anticipate and manage the hundreds of issues that might arise.
State and local governments are moving aggressively to consolidate data centers and associated IT infrastructure. Some intend to outsource portions of their infrastructure and services as part of the consolidation effort, while others may simply need help with planning and executing the consolidation.In addition, some are using consolidation as a platform for broader modern-ization goals, such as implementing virtualization technologies and migrating applications to cloud services. Each of these paths can achieve significant savings and efficiencies, but consolidation’s benefits will be realized only through careful planning and attention to the multitude of interrelated variables and activities involved.
Renewing data center and network infrastructure will improve physical and cyber security, and increase storage and bandwidth capacity to meet the Government’s future requirements for videoconferencing, online services and managing large data sets.
The bottom line is to centralize their administration and rationalize service delivery to achieve greater efficiencies, reduce costs, minimize risks and improve service quality.